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Concordia University School of Business Appoints New Dean
Higher Education Veteran Stephen Christensen Selected
IRVINE, Calif., (January 27, 2014) — Concordia University Irvine (CUI) announced today Stephen Christensen as dean of its prestigious School of Business. Christensen will oversee the overall strategic direction of the school including its accreditation, continued enrollment growth, adding new faculty, creating new programs and expanding local, national and international partnerships.
“Our School of Business continues to gain prominence with employers and recognition in California, the United States and abroad,” said Dr. Kurt Krueger, president of CUI. “Christensen is an energetic innovator and builder with a long history of working with business leaders and faculty. His varied higher education experiences will help move our business school forward with exceptional vision, while his passion for people and business will constitute a valuable addition to the University’s leadership.”
As dean, Christensen will be responsible for expanding the school’s presence not only in Southern California, but also nationally and internationally. Additionally, he will be instrumental in increasing enrollment in undergraduate and graduate programs while establishing new centers and institutes as part of his external relations efforts.
Christensen joined CUI in 2001 as executive vice president for external relations and special assistant to the president. He teaches an entrepreneurship course in CUI’s Master of Business Administration (MBA) program. In 2012, he founded CUI’s nationally-recognized Teen Entrepreneur Academy, (www.cui.edu/tea) an innovative one-week residential summer academy that has taught over 100 high school students how to start businesses. In 2002, he created the University’s Faith and Business Forum and founded Concordia’s Center for Faith and Business. Over 9,000 business leaders have participated in the annual Forum.
With more than 30 years of experience in Southern California working in higher education and development, Christensen has been active in the region’s business community and achieved significant business acumen working at four different universities (including seven years as executive vice president at Chapman University), three private businesses and five non-profit organizations. Christensen specializes in working with CEOs, entrepreneurs and business leaders to start and grow business and university partnerships.
The School of Business is the largest program on CUI’s campus with 350 undergrad majors and 120 MBA students focusing on six business majors: accounting, economics, finance, marketing, management and sports management. In July 2013, the University separated the School of Business and the School of Professional Studies to more effectively serve its diverse population of students in these two market segments, each with unique educational goals and needs.
The former interim business school dean, George Wright, CPA, will stay on and assist Christensen by serving as chief operating officer (COO) and dean of the School of Business Administration. Wright will be responsible for the daily operations of the school including finance, administration and academics. Wright is in his fifth year at CUI where he previously was assistant dean of the School of Business and Professional Studies, as well as a faculty advisor in the Master of Arts in International Studies program. The business school’s previous dean, Dr. Tim Peters is currently serving as the dean of Concordia’s School of Professional Studies.
About Concordia University Irvine
Concordia University Irvine prepares students for their vocations—their calling in life. CUI offers undergraduate, graduate, and adult degree programs in a beautiful Southern California location, with online and regional cohort options. Concordia’s undergraduate program is distinctive among universities in California because of its nationally recognized Core Curriculum, and its Lutheran heritage that provides a thoughtful and caring Christian community that lives out the theology of "Grace Alone. Faith Alone."
Concordia is a U.S. News Top Tier Regional University and has been named by The Chronicle of Higher Education as one of the fastest growing private nonprofit master's institutions. CUI enrolls over 4,000 students.