Just a few goals for USF St. Pete business dean: New building, bridges to community
Maling Ebrahimpour, the brand new dean of the University of South Florida in St. Petersburg's College of Business, wastes no time — efficiency analysis is one of his specialties, after all — listing his business school's goals. Here's his official greeting and here's what he outlined to me in a recent interview:
• To establish the college of business in its own facility, perhaps at what is now the nearby Salvador Dali Museum. The museum will relocate to a new downtown site in early 2011. That leaves the old and mostly windowless Dali building a renovation opportunity and a chance for the college of business finally to claim its own turf. (The business school rents third-floor space in a private building next to the USF St. Petersburg campus.) Ebrahimpour will be busy raising funds for that renovation, a task he's apparently good at. He hopes USF's capital campaign, to be unveiled in October, will help make a home for the business school one of its priorities.
• To freshen old and build new bridges to St. Petersburg and surrounding communities. The dean wants to share the school's expertise with area businesses, to place more students as helpful interns in companies and nonprofits.
• To broaden the direction of the business college.The business school has long focused on "social responsibility" and that will continue. But the dean says he's also exploring additional themes, from business ethics and global business to sustainability and entrepreneurship.
Ebrahimpour, 54, is engaging, funny and will be greatly challenged to take the USF St. Pete business college to the next level in a tough economy and the budget-constrained world of Florida's public universities. (Photo by Cherie Diez of the St. Petersburg Times.)
Read the complete column and more from interview here.
-- Robert Trigaux, Times Business Columnist