Stillman town hall focuses on improvement

Faculty and students gathered on April 4 to discuss ideas for improvement during the Stillman School of Business’ Town Hall meeting.

Alexandra Torres/Staff Photographer
Students and faculty gathered on April 4 to discuss possible improvements within the Stillman School of Business.

One of the biggest concerns was the lack of knowledge and participation from students within the sophomore mentorship program.

Emma Brand, a sophomore financing and management major, along with Associate Dean Leigh Onimus, both stressed that sophomores should take advantage of this experience.

This program is exclusively for second year students, which provides them alumni mentors who have succeeded after graduation, both professionally and through their continuous relations with Seton Hall, according to Brand. Some former participants included representatives from American Express, Barnes & Nobles and Cantor Fitzgerald.

Mark Schild, assistant dean and professor in the department of finance, introduced a new concept he hopes to implement in curriculum in the near future, which students agreed they would like to see. As opposed to focusing on graded assessments such as quizzes and tests, he hopes that professors will focus on projects and presentations.

Schild shared that projects are a more practical form of developing skills that students can use in the professional field, as it focuses on “transforming concepts into practice.”

Joyce Strawser, dean of the Stillman school, also shared her idea to increase her involvement with students directly. She hopes to host several luncheons  and dinners throughout the academic year and invite randomly selected students to attend. By doing so, she encourages students to speak freely about their concerns with the school.

According to Strawser, these meals will most likely occur on a Thursday night or Friday afternoon. Students will be able to bring a plus one, another Stillman student, in case they feel uncomfortable attending alone.

Anthony Laverde, a sophomore marketing and entrepreneurship major, serves as a business senator in the Student Government Association (SGA) who helped to organize this town hall meeting, he shared via email. In an email, he said, “we [SGA senators and deans] will take similar steps in the coming year to plan and execute other events in the future.”

Laverde hopes that with these events students can have a more enjoyable experience during their time at Stillman.

“These town hall events are a place for students to come and have conversations with our deans,” Laverde said. “They can voice their concerns, provide suggestions, and establish a real connection with our deans. We run these events informally, so it is a welcoming, conversation-like environment, as opposed to running it less intimately.”

Brand wished that students would participate more in meetings such as these, as they are hosted for their own benefit.

“After students attend the meetings SGA or Business Senators orchestrate, I hope that they feel more involved with the Seton Hall community and experience transparency between faculty and the student body,” Brand wrote in an email. “I want them to feel that their opinions have merit and are heard and that their suggestions are taken under great consideration. I hope they feel empowered by the meeting’s end.”

Hannah Sakha can be reached at

Author: Hannah Sakha

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