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Arjang A. Assad

Dean, School of Management

Professor, Management Science and Systems Department

Education

PhD, Management Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
MS, Chemical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
MS, Operations Research, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
BS, Mathematics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Academic Experience

Arjang A. Assad was named dean of the University at Buffalo School of Management in August 2008. During his tenure, the school’s national reputation has burgeoned, with significant increases in rankings by such media as Bloomberg Businessweek and Forbes.

He led a comprehensive revision of the MBA curriculum, launched a Master of Science program in accounting and significantly enhanced the Master of Science programs in finance and information systems. In addition, Assad championed and secured sponsorship for LeaderCORE, a major initiative to develop leadership skills in MBA students over the course of their two years in the program, and was instrumental in launching the student-run Terese Kelly Investment Group.

With a significant increase in graduate enrollment, Assad has formulated a strategic plan for the School of Management that involves a 30 percent growth in the size of the school’s faculty and its operating budget by 2016. This growth is supported by a proportionate increase in professional staff and student services, as well. Assad also has clearly articulated three strategic areas of focus for the School of Management—leadership, entrepreneurship and health care management.

Investment in the strategic priorities began in 2011 with the enhancement of the school’s Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership. Assad matched the support obtained from the Provost’s Office to augment the scope and reach of the center’s activities, enabling it to assume a significant role in UB’s economic engagement plans.

Under Assad’s leadership, the School of Management supports entrepreneurship in numerous additional ways, including partnership with the Undergraduate Entrepreneurship Academy, which gives students the chance to learn and live with peers who have similar interests; the Entrepreneurship Lab or eLab, a three-week course that helps students fine-tune their business pitches, engage potential customers and size up target markets; and the Elevator Pitch competition, where budding entrepreneurs have 90 seconds to present business ideas to a panel of judges.

Students who participate in these initiatives often go on to compete in the Henry A. Panasci Jr. Technology Entrepreneurship competition, which has become the region’s premier student entrepreneurship event.

Assad championed and obtained central support to the launch of the school’s Center for Leadership and Organizational Effectiveness in 2013, which significantly advances research, teaching and outreach in the area of leadership and its impact on organizational effectiveness. The center is already making an impact on the community through such events as conferences with renowned speakers and insightful breakout sessions, and corporate training programs for area leaders.

During his tenure, Assad has promoted excellence in research, while recognizing and valuing outstanding teaching. Assad created the Dean’s Research Fellowship to recognize faculty who excel in research and the Dean’s Distinguished Teaching Fellowship to recognize exceptional teaching.

He also established the Arjang A. Assad Teaching Award through a personal endowment in 2013 to recognize, biennially, the contributions of outstanding faculty members in the School of Management.

Assad has invested heavily in student services, with particular emphasis on career and advising services, the success of which can be seen by an increase in the MBA employment rate of from 75 percent to 86 percent over five years. In addition, Assad has built a comprehensive alumni and development program that will have tremendous long-term benefits for the School of Management.

Assad’s commitment to undergraduate education is evidenced by the construction of new space dedicated entirely to undergraduate students to enhance their learning experience as business majors. The Undergraduate Learning and Community Center, slated for completion in fall 2015, will be located in the lower level of the Jacobs Management Center and will include a recitation classroom, a group study area, a student lounge and several tutoring rooms.

Assad also continues to place an increased focus on the school’s international populations, particularly at the Master of Science and undergraduate levels.

In 2011, Assad led the school successfully through its accreditation review, resulting in five more years of accreditation by AACSB International – The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.

Assad previously served as professor of management science and Dean's Professor for Extraordinary Service in the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland, where he had been a faculty member since 1978.

In addition, he held several key administrative positions in the school, serving as chair of the Department of Decision, Operations and Information Technologies from 1998-2003 and as senior associate dean from 2004-07. He also directed and taught in an award-winning cross-disciplinary program involving management and engineering students called QUEST.

Research

Assad’s research interests include operations and quality management, optimization of distribution systems, mathematical programming and the history of operations research. He has authored or edited a number of books, as well as more than 50 refereed articles and book chapters. His most recent book, Profiles in Operations Research: Pioneers and Innovators, was co-authored with Saul I. Gass. The book traces the history of operations research, or the science of decision making, from its military origins to the close of the century. 

He has been a member of the editorial boards of several prestigious scholarly journals, including Operations Research, Transportation Science, and Production and Operations Management. 

Business and Consulting Experience

Assad was a co-founder of a company that produced routing software and provided services in distribution problems, which was sold subsequently. In his research or consulting activities, he has worked on a variety of operations and distribution problems with such major U.S. corporations as DuPont, UPS, Federal Express, IBM, and analyzed operational issues for the Federal Aviation Administration, the Census Bureau, the U.S. Postal Service, the U.S. Army, the American Red Cross and the U.S. Transportation and Energy departments.

As a result of these activities, Assad founded (and subsequently sold) a company that produced routing and distribution software.

Contact Information

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Arjang A. Assad
Dean and Professor
School of Management
University at Buffalo
160 Jacobs Management Center
Buffalo, NY 14260-4000

Tel:  716-645-3221
Fax: 716-645-5926
Email