Donor & Alumni Stories
Q&A with Dean Kesner - 10/14/2013
We recently sat down with Dean Idie Kesner to talk with her about new goals for the Kelley School.
Q: What role do you envision our corporate partners playing in your major initiatives for the Kelley School?
Dean Kesner: Of course, it’s important for our corporate partners to continue to support our experiential learning initiatives, whether it’s providing a real-world consulting project for our students, sponsoring or judging a case competition, or providing feedback to students about resumes and interview skills.
Hands-on learning and personal engagement are hallmarks of a Kelley education, and they are why our hiring companies often tell us our graduates work hard and are ready for anything. These components of our program fit in with our new branding initiative highlighting what we call “Kelley Courage.”
I am asking our corporate partners to share what they already know: Kelley graduates have the talent to succeed, the humility to grow, and the tenacity to persevere. We believe these combined traits set our Kelley alumni apart from other business school graduates, and that’s the story we hope our corporate partners will share.
Q: You’ve said minority recruitment and global programming are important. How can our corporate partners help?
Dean Kesner: Kelley has introduced many innovative programs to attract underrepresented minorities, but we can do better. Our corporate partners can help us identify and encourage top minority talent to consider Kelley. I’d also encourage our partners to become financial supporters for any number of our diversity initiatives, including Junior Executive Institute or the National Diversity Case Competition.
On the global front, we continue to look for collaborations with international companies and universities that fit well with our mission, and we’re committed to supporting social entrepreneurship in areas that need our expertise. There are many funding opportunities for undergraduate or MBA students available that send teams of students overseas to help solve real business problems in underdeveloped communities.
Q: How does this fit into your long-term vision for Kelley?
Dean Kesner: It all works together to provide a complete and personal education that prepares our students to respond nimbly to the business world’s changing needs and continued globalization. Our steady progress in the rankings — all of our major programs are now in the Top 15 — shows our commitment to that mission. Those rankings, and our even stronger rankings for faculty quality and career services, will help us continue to attract the caliber of students and faculty that will propel us even higher.
Frankly, we couldn’t achieve the successes we’ve had without our corporate alliances and we certainly want to assure our partners that their investments in time and financial support will continue to play a major role in developing graduates who will lead their companies into the future.