Strawser officially named as dean of Stillman School
After serving time as acting dean, Joyce Strawser Ph.D. was named the official dean of the Stillman School of Business in a broadcast email on Wednesday, March 14.
Strawser said she was very excited and surprised at how fast the selection process took, after narrowing the search to the four final candidates.
“I feel really grateful that my colleagues here and people across the University have confidence in me,” Strawser said. “I was very excited but it took a little while to sink in; I was in a state of shock.”
Strawser said she arrived at Seton Hall in 1995 as part of the accounting faculty. Prior toher starting at the University, Strawser taught for seven years in the business school at Baruch College in New York City.
Strawser said she wants to continue with three points of success for The Stillman School: preserve the sense of community, high academic quality, and hands-on learning.
“I always tried to behave as acting dean as if I was going to lead the organization long term,” Strawser said. “Even if a different dean had been selected I still would have been part of the Stillman school, so I tried to think long range anyway and think about what is best for Stillman.”
The dean said she views the Stillman School in three groups, students, faculty and alumni.
“To me, what you really want to be doing is creating an involvement where each one of those groups is working to maximize their potential, with each group supportive of the other groups,” Strawser said.
Strawser said she is trying to implement community-building initiatives, which will continue on the foundation of community that Stillman has created over the years.
Strawser said there are some new programs being piloted to continue gaining feedback from students while maintaining a sense of community. The Stillman Dinner Series is happening for the first time this weekend, where 10 alums of Stillman are going to host three to four students for dinner and conversation.
Strawser said she will continue the Stillman tradition of having the Dean Advisory Committee, a group of students who volunteer to meet with the dean and associate deans to brainstorm ideas for improving the school, give feedback and voice any problems or concerns.
According to Strawser, this keeps an open forum for communication between students and faculty where you can always walk away with at least three new ideas.
Outside of her new position as dean, Straswer is a resident of South Orange and lives in walking-distance to the University.
“I’ve always liked to live nearby where I work, so not only am I part of the Seton Hall community but I am part of the larger community of South Orange,” Strawser said.
Her husband is a graduate of Seton Hall Law. She has two teenage boys, ages 17 and 14, both of whom are big Pirates fans, Strawser said.
Strawser attended Texas A&M for her Bachelor’s degree, where her brother is the current dean of the Mays Business School.
“I come from a family of academics,” Strawser said. “My father and three brothers all have a doctorate in accounting.”
Strawser grew up in Virginia and moved to Texas when she was in seventh grade. She is one of six children, with three brothers and two other sisters.
“Having two kids, I think about what my parents did and I don’t see how they possibly could have done it.”
Looking ahead, Strawser said she is proud of the Stillman School of Business, and looks to continue its success.
“We’ve got such a great foundation at Stillman and I consider it such an honor and an awesome responsibility to increase that even more,” Straswer said. “I’m looking forward to working with everyone across campus and being invested 150 percent in trying to make things better for everyone.”
Joanna Toole can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.