Yet another business school dean is calling it quits after a single five-year term. Following last week’s announcement that the dean of Georgetown University’s McDonough School is stepping down, the dean of Northeastern University’s D’Amore-McKim School of Business yesterday (June 12) said he would rejoin the faculty after the 2016–17 academic year.
For D’Amore-McKim Dean Hugh Courtney, that means he is giving up the job at the end of his five-year contract, just like David Thomas at McDonough (see McDonough Dean To Step Down). The university plans to form a search committee early in the fall to help find a successor.
The former McKinsey partner, who joined Northeastern as dean in July of 2012 from the University of Maryland’s Smith School of Business where he was vice dean, had a productive term. The beneficiary of the largest gift ever to Northeastern’s business school, he led the institution as the university renamed the school in 2012 the D’Amore-McKim School of Business—made possible by a $60 million gift from two alumni: Richard D’Amore, BA’76, and Alan McKim, MBA’88. The business school raised approximately $50 million more in the four years that followed.
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Despite the huge infusion of cash, Courtney failed to gain much traction in the rankings game for the school’s full-time MBA program. The school slipped one spot last year to 51st on Poets&Quants‘ composite list of the five most influential MBA rankings, from 50th in 2012 when he took over the school as dean. During that same timeframe, the school’s U.S. News ranking dropped one place to 57th from 56th, while it fell ten places to 61st in the Bloomberg Businessweek ranking.
Still, under his leadership, D’Amore-McKim established itself as a leading provider of online graduate business programs, increased the size of its undergraduate business program by 16%, and also launched specialized master’s programs in several areas. The school noted that the number of students participating in its well-known co-op program has increased by 36%, including more global co-ops and co-ops at startups. Under Courtney’s direction, D’Amore-McKim launched an MS in Innovation program in 2014, and is launching new full-time MBA tracks in healthcare and entrepreneurship as well as new programs that include online versions of the MS in Innovation and MS in Business Analytics.
“During his years as dean, Hugh applied his expertise in business strategy and strategic decision-making to develop many new programs and initiatives at DMSB,” wrote Provost James C. Bean in an email to the university community. “Through Hugh’s leadership, the DMSB offers exceptional undergraduate and graduate programs and cultivates a pioneering entrepreneurial ecosystem for students as they engage in experiential learning and international programs.”
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D’Amore-McKim said that Courtney also led the way in unbundling graduate education at the university level, with 10 new credit-bearing certificate programs that can be “stacked” into master’s degree programs. At the university level, he helped lead the development of Northeastern’s curricular flexibility initiative that has created new pathways for students to more fully explore their diverse interests.
“It is an extraordinary honor and privilege to serve the D’Amore-McKim School and Northeastern University as dean, and I am thankful to all of my colleagues for their support and dedication over the past four years,” Courtney said in a statement. He did not say why he was not renewing his term.
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