From left to right: Alexander Zirkler, Executive Director for Lauder Business School, Felice Policastro,Ph.D, ACBSP evaluator and Professor of International Business & Finance at Gardner-Webb University, Prof. (FH) Mag. Julius Dem, MBA, Director of Studies International Business Administration for LBS, Birgit Wakonig, BSc, MSc, Quality Manager for LBS, Prof. (FH) Dr. Tamás Csermely, MSc, Director of Studies: International Management & Leadership and Strategic Finance & Business Analytics, Member of the Council.
Lauder Business School is thrilled and proud to share the successful completion of the ACBSP – LBS accreditation audit on campus this week. With the official accreditation decision expected in November, the on-campus international audit represented the last step in a complex four-year process that would also allow LBS diploma recognition in the USA. Lauder Business School was encouraged by the feedback received from the team of ACBSP auditors – a testament to the impeccable LBS work ethic and academic standards. We were also extremely humbled and thankful for the feedback LBS received from our group of outstanding students and alumni that took part in the interview process.
Conducted on site by Felice Policastro, Ph.D, ACBSP evaluator and Professor of International Business & Finance at Gardner-Webb University, and online by Lucie Depoo, Ph.D, Chief Academic Officer at University of Economics and Management (VŠEM) in Prague, and Krystyna Krol MEd, Learning and Development Consultant, eLearning Architect, Academic & Corporate Education and Accreditation Specialist, the three meeting-intensive days of international audit were crowned with encouraging and positive reviews for the work our students, faculty and staff carry out.
Like any milestone worth achieving, the ACBSP accreditation process was anything but easy. Ever since we began in 2018, Lauder Business School was under intense scrutiny: no administrative or academic stone was left unturned. The LBS premises, processes, curricula, reports, communications, staff, students, and alumni were thoroughly examined, countless interviews were conducted and laborious reports were submitted. We opened up our school for external scrutiny confident that our ethic permeates every aspect of our work, and it was fantastic to receive such validating feedback from the ACBSP auditors in this final step of the process.
During these three days on campus, Dr. Policastro toured the premises and conducted several meetings with students, alumni and staff. Our Executive Director and members of the council offered him a glimpse into the overall LBS strategy, our goals and objectives and shared future expansion plans. The staff members from various LBS departments shared specific processes, internal and external communication strategies, departmental standards and objectives with ACBSP, and offered a glimpse into their daily work routine.
Throughout the process, LBS was commended for our student-oriented approach to our processes -from our consistency in acquiring and incorporating student feedback into our short- and long-term strategies and curriculum, to our transparency in communicating our challenges and our relentless pursuit of continuous improvement. The interviews with both current students and graduates revealed our students´ competitive strengths on the job market – an effect of the LBS strategy to undergo systematic evaluations that validate our students according to Peregrine, ETS and MFTB standards.
The LBS productive research department also impressed the ACBSP auditors with its prolific activities and its drive to help students and faculty with the current applied research methodology. Other areas for which our school received praise as well, include the diversity of our student body and staff in combination with a well-developed on boarding process, and our ability to react quickly and be proactive in our marketing and communications processes.
Dr. Policastro´s closing remarks reaffirmed that LBS’ candidacy for an ACBSP accreditation is strong: “I saw first-hand how you are basically living the ACBSP standards.” Finally, the auditors recognised the years of hard work and immense effort the LBS Quality Manager, Ms. Birgit Wakonig, BSc, MSc dedicated to the process.
Lauder Business School will continue its pursuit of excellence and assured the auditors of its commitment to fully implement the ACBSP recommendations for improvement.
Once the ACBSP accreditation is obtained, all LBS students graduating onward, including the ones who graduated later than December 2018, will benefit from international recognition of their LBS diploma, including in the US. Aside from the academic recognition, however, the accreditation will also offer honours society recognition for eminent students, the possibility to obtain funding for international conference attendance and ample networking chances for students and staff.
Lauder Business School expects the official accreditation decision to be announced by November 2022.