business students


Slippery Rock University’s College of Business will enter a new era Aug. 3 when Lawrence Shao takes over as dean.

SRU names new College of Business dean


SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Lawrence Shao, a tenured professor of finance at Marshall University's College of Business and former eight-year division head of its finance and economics department, has been named the new dean of Slippery Rock University's College of Business.

"Following a national search, we were pleased to offer Dr. Shao the position as dean. His background and vision appear to be a perfect fit for our expanding College of Business, and we are pleased to welcome him to our campus," said Philip Way, provost and vice president for academic and student affairs. "He brings an abundance of experience that is certain to help guide our College of Business into new areas, all the while supporting student learning and transition."

Lawrence Shao


"As part of his interview, Dr. Shao made a very impressive presentation explaining his leadership style and his academic ideas," said Amir Mohammadi, SRU vice president for finance, administrative affairs and advancement services, who also served as chair of the search committee. "His background, former studies and outstanding contributions to academic research clearly stood out, and he can hit the ground running. We welcome him to the SRU family."

"What impressed me from my initial campus visit at Slippery Rock University was the student centric focus by the faculty, staff and administration. As part of the SRU family, I look forward to directing team-based strategic initiatives that guide the College of Business to further levels of excellence. With the support of our campus community, we will continue SRU's fine tradition of providing life-changing educational experiences that help students develop both personally and professionally," Shao said.

He will begin his new duties Aug. 3.

Shao replaces David Valentine, who was serving as interim dean and will return to his faculty position as an award-winning professor in SRU's School of Business.

SRU's College of Business, with a faculty and staff complement of more than 50, offers a master of business administration and also includes undergraduate programs in all areas of business as well as degree programs in communication; hospitality, event management and tourism; safety management; sport management; and military science.

More than 1,900 students are enrolled in the college.

During his time at Marshall, Shao helped develop a new business major and several new programs, increased his division's enrollment by more than 50 percent and worked on various fundraising projects.

He has taught financial management courses in the undergraduate program, master of business administration, international masters of business administration and in the doctorate of management practice in nurse anesthesia programs at Marshall.

At Marshall the Division of Finance and Economics includes 16 full-time faculty members. As head, Shao was responsible for all activities within the division, including divisional governance, instruction, faculty and student affairs, external communication, budget and resources, office management, and professional development.

He was actively involved in AACSB International reports, including the school's fifth year maintenance review process.

Prior to joining the Marshall faculty, Shao taught at the University of Tennessee, Fordham University, Fitchburg State and the University of Tampa.

He has been the recipient of teaching and research awards during his academic career in higher education.

A prolific contributor to academic research, he has written three finance and management textbooks, published more than 45 refereed journal articles and made more than 80 presentations both domestically and abroad. He has served as a business finance consultant and has been a member of the Huntington Chamber of Commerce and Charleston Area Alliance.

Active in his community, Shao has held leadership roles on boards, including past chairman of the Western West Virginia American Red Cross, board member of Metro Credit Union and past treasurer of the Barboursville Volunteer Fire Department.

He earned his doctorate in finance from the University of Tennessee and his master's in business administration and his bachelor's degree in business administration at Old Dominion University.

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