St. Thomas taps entrepreneurship chief as next dean of Opus College of Business


Laura Dunham, an entrepreneur-turned-professor, has been named dean of the Opus College or university of Small business at the University of St. Thomas, the 2nd-most significant company school in Minnesota.

Dunham for the past five yrs has been associate dean in cost of the Schulze College of Entrepreneurship inside the organization faculty. She succeeds Stefanie Lenway, who led the Opus School of Company since 2014.

“The Opus Higher education desires an entrepreneurial leader, who will carry on to construct a culture of innovation in all corners of the university,” Lenway claimed in a assertion. “Laura is this entrepreneurial chief with deep expertise making applications in the Schulze Faculty that have been given countrywide recognition.”

With Dunham at the helm, the Schulze University grew nearly three moments in sizing as calculated by the selection of majoring learners and in general credit rating several hours taught. Entrepreneurship is now the fifth-biggest main at the University of St. Thomas.

In that time, the Schulze Faculty went from unranked to No. 23 on the Princeton Review’s listing of undergraduate entrepreneurship systems. Dunham aims for St. Thomas to be amid the prime-ranked Catholic organization faculties.

“We have a definitely wonderful college and personnel who are focused to educating our pupils and supporting our neighborhood,” Dunham claimed in an job interview. “What is good about the rankings is that they allow individuals know about our operate.”

Dunham joined St. Thomas 19 yrs in the past after co-founding a studio theater as a younger adult. She assisted create interdisciplinary ordeals at the St. Paul-based college, together with a workshop for initial-12 months learners that matches, for instance, engineering college students with finance majors on assignments.

Dunham worked with some of the university’s top rated benefactors, including Greatest Buy founder Dick Schulze and Liquid Investments CEO Ron Fowler, to make four organization competitions that reward college students with scholarships and seed cash.

More a short while ago, she assisted the Schulze School produce interactions with the Minnesota Black Chamber of Commerce, the Latino Economic Development Heart and some others to make additional chances for prospective college students and business enterprise leaders of colour in Minnesota. As a final result, Opus College or university began to entice a far more varied pool of candidates to scholarship courses and raise college variety.

“We are genuinely dedicated to building an natural environment that draws in a a lot more numerous established of students,” Dunham said. She mentioned that the Twin Towns location, like considerably of the country, faces a shortage of expertise and a populace that is significantly diverse.

“We need to make confident every person is having entry to instructional chances,” she mentioned. “It is really a moral imperative and an economic essential.”

Lenway will keep on being at the Opus Higher education, starting to be a faculty fellow in its Business in a Digital Environment initiative.


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