USF St. Petersburg has new business college dean

Sridhar Sundaram takes over from the interim dean on July 1.
Sridhar Sundaram takes over from the interim dean on July 1.
Published Mar. 18, 2016

ST. PETERSBURG — The University of South Florida St. Petersburg has appointed a Michigan educator as the new dean of its rising business school south of downtown.

Sophia Wisniewska, the school's regional chancellor, announced Thursday that she has selected Sridhar Sundaram to head the Kate Tiedemann College of Business. The school said in a statement that Sundaram will oversee faculty and work closely with the university's leadership team.

He was chosen from four finalists announced last month and will take over from interim dean Gary Patterson on July 1.

Sundaram "brings with him a wealth of knowledge and the leadership skills to develop a clear strategic vision for the college," Wisniewska said in the statement. "We are excited to welcome him and his family to the USF St. Petersburg community."

Sundaram previously worked at the Seidman College of Business at Grand Valley State University in Grand Rapids, Mich. He served as associate dean for graduate programs and centers, and academic director of the college's Executive MBA and Full-Time Integrated MBA program. He also headed the school's finance department for seven years.

Sundaram earned a doctorate in business administration from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and his bachelor's and master's degrees in commerce from PSG College of Arts and Science in India.

According to USF St. Petersburg, his research has been published in a number of scholarly and industry journals, including the Journal of Banking and Finance, the Journal of Quantitative and Financial Analysis and the Financial Review. He also has received a number of professional and community awards, the university said.

The business school has been a major focus at USF St. Petersburg over the past three years as the school garnered major donations, most notably a $10 million gift from local retired businesswoman Kate Tiedemann, and started construction on a new home. The college's new building at Third Street and Seventh Avenue S is expected to open in the fall.

"This is an exciting time to become a part of USF St. Petersburg," Sundaram said in a statement. "I look forward to the opportunity to lead the (college of business) to its next level of excellence in a business community that is so engaged and committed to its success, and to build on these strategic partnerships as impetus to our growth in the future."

Patterson, the interim dean, is a professor of finance who has been teaching at USF St. Petersburg since 2000, filling leadership roles and conducting research along the way. He called Sundaram and "excellent choice" to lead the business college.

"He has a track record of developing relationships with community partners that will be critical to our success," Patterson said in a statement. "And, importantly, he has demonstrated innovation in developing academic programs that prepare students to meet the demands of a dynamic workforce environment."