Dr. Eric Dent
joins UNCP as Dean of the School of Business
Eric B. Dent has been selected as the new Dean of the School
of Business at The University of North Carolina at Pembroke.
Dr. Dent comes to
UNCP from the University of Maryland University College, where he is
a doctoral professor and founding director of a doctoral program in
management with specializations in organizational processes, international
management and technology and information systems.
Before earning a
Ph.D. in organizational behavior and development, Dr. Dent, 41, worked
in software development and management consulting as a corporate vice
Dr. Roger Brown,
Provost and Vice Chancellor for the Office of Academic Affairs, said
Dr. Dent is an important new addition to the university.
that Eric Dent is the right person at the right time to help the School
of Business achieve major progress in developing the managers who will
lead our region and state," Dr. Brown said. "His energy and
creativity are very impressive. But all of his current colleagues mentioned
his sense of integrity as one of his strongest assets, and as a family
man, he has made a significant commitment to UNCP and to building a
prosperous, healthy community. He will be a fine new neighbor."
Dr. Dent said he
is particularly excited by the prospect of joining a growing university.
"One of the
most attractive aspects of this opportunity is that UNC Pembroke is
growing so quickly," he said. "I prefer to be part of an organization
in the growing stage."
objectives are in the planning stages at the School of Business, including
community economic development.
"One of the
most important things I have been asked to do is develop the relationship
between the university and the local business community," Dr. Dent
said. "Having students and faculty engaged in research, marketing
and the development of business enterprise is a productive relationship
for communities and universities."
The new dean has
been tasked to work toward accreditation for UNCP's graduate and undergraduate
programs by the AACSB (Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of
"This is a
3-5 year process that is very important to our university," Dr.
Dent said. "Accreditation is an asset in attracting graduate and
undergraduate students and professors from outside our region. It will
take a concerted and strenuous effort on the part of all our faculty
Dr. Dent has published
many articles and two books: "Organization Development" (1993,
University of Maryland Press) and "Management: Perspectives, Processes,
and Productivity" (1995, University of Maryland Press). His interests
are the disciplines of organizational leadership and behavior. He said
he was drawn into the field from work experiences.
"I was getting
an MBA in finance while working for IBM as a software engineer,"
Dr. Dent said. "We were working on a project with 500 programmers
who were divided into departments of 10 people."
three of the best people on the entire project in my department, we
were consistently less productive than other departments."
opened by eyes about what performance is all about," he said. "My
impression had been that excellence in software development was the
main factor in high performance. What I learned, though, is that how
decisions are made, how people are motivated, how communications occur
and so forth make even more of a difference.
morale and empowerment are critical in any enterprise," he said.
that we as a society can experience the next leap in the quality of
life through better organizational management," Dr. Dent said.
After working for
IBM, Dr. Dent worked for an international consulting firm and started
his own firm, Always Improvement, in 1993.
Dr. Dent lists his
current research interests as leadership in turbulent environments,
new science and chaos theory applications in organizations and organizational
learning experience at universities.
A member of the
Editorial Review Board of the Journal of Organizational Change Management,
Dr. Dent is a member of the Academy of Management, the Organizational
Behavior Teaching Society and the United Kingdom Systems Society.
Growing up in Florida,
Dr. Dent also lived in Durham, N.C., where his father worked for IBM.
He earned his Bachelor
of Science and Master of Science degrees in Mathematics and Computer
Science from Emory University in Atlanta. Dr. Dent earned a Master of
Business Administration degree and Ph.D. from George Washington University
in Washington, D.C.
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