Business Schools

Thunderbird's Branding Move


The Arizona school adopts a new name—again. Plus: MBAs are LinkedIn; Reims opens the bubbly; and more deans and donations in this latest roundup of news from the MBA world

What's in a name? A whole lot, according to officials at Thunderbird's graduate business school. Officials at the Glendale (Ariz.) business program have just changed the school's name from Thunderbird, The Garvin School of International Management, to The Thunderbird School of Global Management. Known for its strong focus on global business, the school hopes this fifth name change since the institution was founded in 1946 will improve its worldwide presence and grab the attention of more prospective students.

The name change is part of Thunderbird's 2010 strategic plan to improve brand recognition as it expands its offerings around the world. The school says that Thunderbird alumnus and trustee Samuel Garvin, who, along with his wife, gave the school $60 million in 2004 and had the school named for him, has "endorsed" the decision to change the name.

—Janie Ho

It's Not What You Know…

LinkedIn—the online professional site that's partly a social network and partly a virtual business card exchange—allows its 9 million users to list their connections to other site members on their profile page. So which members are the most linked in? Ranked by employer, those who work at salesforce.com (CRM) and Google (GOOG) (on average, 48 connections), says LinkedIn spokesperson Kay Luo. The site boasts 130,000 recruiters, but the most-connected users by job title are founders and CEOs (76), followed by board members (74), and, a bit further down, MBA students (44), who outlink senior recruiters.

School ties also matter. Students and graduates of Stanford business school have an average of 60 connections, followed by those from MIT's Sloan School (58), and Harvard Business School (57). And LinkedIn says the top-growing industries among new users include arts and crafts, libraries, and fitness.

—Lauren Young and Paula Lehman

Reims Pops the Cork

It's likely that officials of the Reims Management School in France toasted the New Year with a bottle of champagne. That's because the school has named global wine guru Stephen Charters as head of its Champagne Chair. This should come as no surprise, as Reims is a city in the Champagne-Ardenne region of France, famous for its sparkling wine.

Charters, an academic with a background in wine marketing, will develop research activities and create specialized courses at the masters, MBA, and executive education level. Charters has the intoxicating task of working with major houses, including Moët & Chandon, Veuve Clicquot, Ruinart, and Krug, that have helped fund the chair.

—Janie Ho

New Hampshire, Lehigh Name Deans

The University of New Hampshire's Whittemore School of Business and Economics has named Daniel Innis as its new dean, effective July. Innis formerly served as dean of the College of Business, Public Policy, & Health at the University of Maine.

Paul Brown of NYU's Stern School of Business was tapped as the new dean for Lehigh University's College of Business and Economics. Brown served as the associate dean of Executive MBA programs at Stern before heading to the Bethlehem, Pennsylvania business school.

—Janie Ho

Big Gifts to Florida, Boise State

University of Florida alumnus William Hough, has pledged $30 million to the Warrington College of Business—the largest private donation ever made to the university. The donation, which will be supplemented by state funds, will go towards constructing the William R. Hough Hall, which will house the Graduate School of Business, to be renamed in Hough's honor.

The Micron Technology Foundation is in the giving mood, too. The educational and charitable foundation established by the Boise-based semiconductor company donated $12.5 million to Boise State University. With the new College of Business & Economics building that the school hopes to construct with this money, Micron (MU) can be sure to attract some new talent to utilize over the years.

—Janie Ho

Wharton Tops FT Rankings

The University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School has topped the Financial Times rankings of the top 100 global MBA programs. Wharton was followed by Columbia, Harvard, Stanford, and London Business School.

Rounding out the top 10 were the University of Chicago, INSEAD, New York University, Dartmouth, and Yale.

The FT bases its rankings on factors such as international experience, salary increase, employment, and faculty research.

—Janie Ho


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