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Atkinson Graduate School of Management Dean's Corner

A message from Dean Örn Bodvarsson

March 2023

Dear Atkinson community,

For the 10th consecutive year, Bloomberg Businessweek has ranked the full-time Willamette MBA in the top 100 MBA programs in the country — the top (and only ranked) MBA program in Oregon — and the second-highest ranked MBA program in the Pacific Northwest. We exceeded in all categories — compensation, learning, networking, entrepreneurship, and diversity — and were given an overall ranking at #76. We achieved our highest ranking ever on Poets&Quants also at #76. And, US News & World Report has ranked our MBA as one of 30 national programs that sends the most graduates into high-paying fields. This recognition reflects the hard work of our exceptional faculty, students, Career Management team — and, you, our accomplished alumni.

To make sure that we continue this sterling record in rankings, I, in consultation with Willamette’s leadership and the Atkinson team, have set an exciting strategic direction for our school. Our 2023-27 strategic plan, recently approved by President Thorsett, is a blueprint for “Atkinson 2.0.” I look forward to sharing this plan with you and hearing your thoughts over the coming months.

To achieve this vision, we will leverage our world-class management education and enhance it by developing and launching innovative new programming in areas that are crucial to the region and the world, such as healthcare, corporate social responsibility, and arts entrepreneurship. To take one example, Assistant Professor of Data Science and Marketing Jake Hoskins was recently appointed the new Guy F. Atkinson Professor in order to focus his incredible teaching and scholarship in corporate social responsibility.

There are big changes afoot with the Executive Development Center (EDC). First, we have started the search for a new EDC Director. We’re grateful for Kristin Iseri’s 9 years of leadership, and hope to complete the search in approximately three months by hiring a director who can build on her work. It’s an exciting time to grow the center’s programming portfolio, revenues, and community impact.

Enjoy the upcoming Oregon spring, be well, and best wishes to you and yours.


Dean Örn Bodvarsson, Ph.D.
Atkinson Graduate School of Management

Dean Örn Bodvarsson, Ph.D.
Willamette University

Alumni and Parent Engagement

900 State Street
Salem Oregon 97301 U.S.A.
503-375-5304 voice
503-370-6830 fax