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Charting a new course: New Ph.D. program builds on grad level success

News | 06.10.2021

This story appeared in the 2020 President’s Report of Onyx Anneau.

By BJ Riley ’16

PhD in global leadership logo

As the newly appointed Dean of Business and Leadership at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College (SMWC), leadership education comes as second nature to Lamprini Pantazi, Ph.D. When tasked with taking on a new leadership program, Pantazi was all in.

The success of the Master of Leadership Development (MLD) program was foundational in making the decision to include a new Ph.D. in Global Leadership in the Lilly Endowment, Inc. Charting the Future proposal request. With her experience with the MLD program and the new Graduate Certificate in Women’s Leadership, Pantazi was excited to take on the task.

Lamprini Pantazi
Lamprini Pantazi, Ph.D.,
dean of business and leadership

“For the past ten years I have been asked about this doctoral program, and I always replied, ‘That time will come.’ I am so excited the time is now,” Pantazi said, donning a big smile and expressing her signature enthusiasm.

“The Global Leadership program will be very competitive with other similar programs,” Pantazi says, adding her goal is to offer an efficient, cost effective program. The curriculum focuses on both academic and professional pathways to provide additional opportunities to Ph.D. graduates for either path with a completion time that is commensurate with like programs.

She is very encouraged by the interest she is already receiving from prospective students, and admits, she has begun dreaming of how she might build on what will soon be a new pathway at The Woods in the global leadership arena.

Mission driven

“For the past ten years I have been asked about this doctoral program, and I always replied, ‘That time will come.’ I am so excited the time is now.”

Lamprini Pantazi, Ph.D., dean of business and leadership

The global leadership field is seeing a high need, now more than ever, according to Pantazi.

“There is a growing demand for a leadership Ph.D. because of the business challenges of today and to help face the complexity of problems in today’s global economy.”

The pandemic has helped to emphasize this need, she said. “It is important to work together to solve global issues and current events show how important global leadership is — perfect timing!”

There will also be opportunities to study abroad, which will allow students to gain practical, experiential learning while immersed in international cultures.

To further strengthen the program, Pantazi will focus a portion of the recruiting on attracting international students through partnerships with Al Akhawayn University (AUI) in Morocco and others. The first fully international cohort is projected to begin in 2023.

Timeline to launch the Ph.D. program

→ In September 2020, Lilly Endowment Inc. granted SMWC $1 million to fund growth in academic programs from their Charting the Future initiative. This enabled the creation of the College’s first doctoral program, a Ph.D. in Global Leadership with a concentration in organizational behavior and change.

→ An advisory board immediately began working on a mission and values statement for the proposed program, ensuring both were reflective of the overall mission of SMWC. Additionally, they wanted to match the vision of the College and Saint Mother Theodore Guerin using “Virtus Cum Scientia,” which translates to “virtue with knowledge united,” as a theme.

→ The Higher Learning Commission approved the program to allow official recruitment of students in mid-May 2021.

→ The initial cohort will start in August 2021.

→ The program will take 42 months to complete in an immersive hybrid format. Much of the program will be taught online, while in-person residency meetings could occur yearly along with creative virtual residencies throughout.