Michigan Ross Dean Scott DeRue To Step Down

Ross School of Business Dean Scott DeRue


I am writing to you with mixed emotions, as this is one of the most difficult decisions I have ever made,” DeRue says in the email, obtained by Poets&Quants. “On May 23rd, I will serve my last day as dean of Michigan Ross. Shortly thereafter, I will assume a senior executive position in the private sector, with details forthcoming in early June.

When I arrived in Ann Arbor in 2007 and joined the Michigan Ross faculty, it was my dream job. I was surrounded by my academic heroes, wonderful faculty and staff colleagues, exceptionally talented students, amazing alumni, and a campus community that embodies what it means to be the Leaders and Best. I felt a deep sense of pride and good fortune to be part of such a wonderful community, and after 14 years, I still wake every morning feeling the same way.

Our community, and each and every one of you, holds a special place in my heart, and I will forever consider the University of Michigan and Ross School of Business my family.

Serving as your dean for the past five years has been the greatest professional honor of my life. Because of your commitment to excellence and passion for our mission, over the past 5 years we have been able to achieve great things, for which I am extraordinarily proud and grateful for all of you. Some of these accomplishments include:

  • Achieved some of the highest rankings in Ross School history, including every program with a top 10 ranking, many in the top 5, and several programs ranked #1.
  • Increased enrollment by 20% as we moved to a 4-year undergraduate program, and applications to the school’s degree programs increased by 86%.
  • Raised $204 million, of which 83% supported students, faculty, and new academic programs.
  • Launched new social-impact initiatives, including our Business+Impact Initiative, Business & Society Series, and +Impact Studio.
  • Achieved new records for gender, URM, and first-generation representation among our students, introduced DEI into core classes and new electives, and last year, 65% of our faculty contributed to our DEI mission through their research, teaching, and/or service.
  • Increased the number of faculty research publications each year by 18%.
  • Launched a ground-breaking online MBA, built a state-of-the-art digital education studio, and reached more than 3 million learners in our online certificate programs.
  • Expanded the school’s portfolio of Ross Experiences in Action-Based Learning (REAL), created the Living Business program, and increased global study opportunities by 23%.
  • Earned recognition for the #1 alumni network among business schools globally.
  • Balanced the budget every year, and increased the school’s annual revenue by 27% and net position by 17%.

Looking forward, as we reimagine the future of business education and rebound from the pandemic, I am filled with hope and optimism knowing that Michigan Ross has a strong foundation to build upon and is positioned for a very bright future. I also have an immense amount of trust and belief in our leaders across the school to guide us forward to a successful AY 2021-22. For myself, it will be a new chapter in my life, and I am excited to share with you more details as soon as possible. I am returning to the private sector after 18 years of academic life as a Ph.D. student and professor. The road ahead will be full of new opportunities and challenges, all of which I am excited about, especially knowing that I will continue to have the University of Michigan and Ross School community in my corner, supporting me every step of the way.

As noted above, my last day as dean will be May 23rd. Provost Collins is developing a plan to appoint an interim dean, and I will work with that person to assure a smooth transition. The provost will soon share additional information, including plans for the search to hire my permanent successor.

Forever and always, Go Blue!

Scott DeRue


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