Florida A&M’s School of Business and Industry is working toward international accreditation.
It has been seven years since FAMU’s SBI began its current cycle to achieve the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International accreditation. This could be the first specialized accreditation that SBI receives.
“AACSB International accreditation, once attained, will cover the bachelor’s and master’s level business programs at Florida A&M University,” said Shawnta Friday-Stroud, dean of SBI since Feb. 12, 2010 after serving as interim dean for ten and a half months.
The AACSB International accreditation will put FAMU’s SBI among 633 other institutions in the world to hold such accreditation. Dean Friday-Stroud is hoping to have international accreditation by 2013.
“I think it will help set us apart from our competition and make us become more diverse now that we will have the accreditation,” said Asia Ajagu, a fourth-year accounting student from Milwaukee. “It will make us more appealing to international students who are trying to decide between a PWI and an HBCU. It will put us up there with them.”
Although the SBI does not have any specialized accreditations, it is accredited by the Southern Association of Schools and Colleges’ Commission on Colleges.
“Because SBI graduates have degrees from an accredited school (university), they are able to start great careers with great companies, and they are able to gain acceptance into other great universities to pursue graduate and professional degrees,” said Friday-Stroud.
For SBI to achieve accreditation, it must fit certain criteria from AACSB International. On Nov. 11, 2010, SBI submitted its AACSB International Self-Evaluation Report, which outlined all the changes SBI has implemented in order to better adhere to the AACSB criteria necessary for accreditation.
“Our policy and curricular changes occur to ensure that not only are we aligned with AACSB International’s accreditation mission-driven standards, but that we are also staying true to our mission of maintaining ‘the relevance and currency of our academic programs,'” said Friday-Stroud.
So, as we progress in our quest for AACSB International accreditation, we have and will continue to use their feedback to continuously improve and update our policies and curricula as necessary.”
There will be continuous changes to improve student recruitment, learning, retention and graduation, including faculty training, development and resource acquisition.
Although the accreditation will help set FAMU SBI apart, some students are not concerned.
“If we don’t get AACSB accreditation, it is not really going to affect us…when you get into an interview, they are not going to look at whether the person is AACSB accredited or not,” said Malik Mangum, a third-year accounting student from Tampa. “They are going to look at the person, the GPA, if they can network and if they are intelligent.”
Friday-Stroud wants students to know that the SBI faculty and staff are working very hard toward receiving AACSB International accreditation.
FAMU’s SBI has graduated thousands of students since it was found in 1974 under the founding dean Sybil C. Mobley.
According to Friday-Stroud, SBI has graduated just under 2500 students since the 2004-2005 school year.
A notable graduate from FAMU’s SBI is Mia Jones, a U.S. Representative from Jacksonville who received her bachelor of science in accounting and MBA in human resource management.