Campus: CSU Fullerton -- January 30, 2004

Cal State Fullerton's College of Business and Economics Receives Maximum Accreditation Renewal

Cal State Fullerton’s College of Business and Economics has earned successful renewal of accreditation for its business and accounting programs from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.

“We are extremely gratified that the AACSB continues to recognize the superior academic quality of our college,” said Anil K. Puri, dean of the College of Business and Economics. “Full accreditation renewal is an acknowledgement of the top-notch education that the college provides students in Orange County and the surrounding communities. It, along with the number and diversity of our successful alumni, are evidence of a job well done.”

Fullerton’s College of Business and Economics is among only 25 percent of business schools nationwide that have earned AACSB accreditation. The university’s accounting program is among just 163 programs nationally with additional specialized accreditation. Cal State Fullerton is the only Orange County university to hold that distinction.

The CSUF College of Business and Economics is home to nation’s third largest accredited undergraduate business program and the largest such program in California in terms of enrollment: 7,140 undergraduates and 498 graduate students.

Accreditation is a process of voluntary, nongovernmental review of educational institutions and programs. Such accreditation assures quality and promotes excellence in business education, noted Puri.

To achieve accreditation, business programs must satisfy the expectations of a wide range of quality standards linked to the institution’s mission and related to strategic management of resources, interactions of faculty members and students in the educational process, and achievement of learning goals in degree programs.

During the accreditation process, Cal State Fullerton was visited and evaluated by business school deans with detailed knowledge of management education, applying accreditation standards that are widely accepted in the educational community. Heading the team was Earle C. Traynham of the University of North Florida.

Among the strengths cited by the team are “excellent relationships with the business community” and “excellent technology support for its faculty and classrooms.” “I’m proud to say our programs have enjoyed an unbroken record of accreditation since 1965,” said Puri, adding that when first accredited, Cal State Fullerton was the nation’s youngest institution to achieve that standard, doing so just two years after the campus admitted its first freshmen class.

“This has been a great tribute all these years for the College of Business and Economics and its accounting program,” said alumnus Phil Schimmel (B.A. business administration - accounting ’76), managing partner with KPMG LLP. “The latest renewal of accreditation is a special tribute to the efforts of Dean Puri and his faculty. It puts us in an elite group and adds credibility to the university and its graduates.”

The College of Business and Economics is known for its annual economic forecast presented by Puri, as well as Professor for a Day and Business Week activities that bring alumni and other business leaders to campus to share their knowledge and expertise with students. In addition, business majors are required to complete capstone courses that typically involve real-world projects, providing students with practical experience and benefits to area businesses.

Faculty members in the college serve as advisers and consultants to international, national and statewide agencies, and as members of national and state advisory boards. They have testified before the Congress and served as consultants to multinational corporations.

Cal State Fullerton business administration majors have won national and regional awards for their skills in utilizing their business education in practical applications. As students, they receive broad exposure to the fields of business and economics, as well as opportunities to specialize in a number of programs, ranging from accounting, marketing, finance and economics, to international business and information systems. Three undergraduate degrees are offered: business administration, economics and international business, plus five graduate degrees: MBA, accountancy, economics, information systems and taxation.

“The renewal of accreditation the College of Business has received is a validation of Cal State Fullerton’s place among the nation’s top public universities,” noted David Hirz (B.A. business administration - finance ’96), president of Food 4 Less Stores. “I am proud to be a graduate of Cal State Fullerton’s College of Business. The education I received at CSUF has served me very well in my professional life,” Hirz added. “CSUF’s College of Business has an outstanding curriculum that prepares students well for their careers in the business world. Employers also know that CSUF business graduates have the skills that one needs to succeed.”

In addition to its educational programs, the college provides research, consulting, continuing education and training programs for the Southern California region. The College of Business and Economics operates centers for: Economic Education, Entrepreneurship, Insurance Studies, Study of Economics of Aging, and Study of Emerging Markets. The college also houses the Family Business Council, and the institutes for Economic and Environmental Studies, Real Estate and Land Use, and Small Business.

“Our centers and institutes contribute to the economic vitality of our region,” noted Puri. “Just as we recruit top-quality faculty members to teach our students, we utilize their expertise and skills to educate and help advance the region’s business community.”

Included in the university’s master development plan is a building for the College of Business and Economics that will feature state-of-the-art classrooms, interactive technology, multimedia lecture halls and additional faculty offices. “Currently various departments of the college are housed in four buildings on campus,” said Puri. “A new building will allow us to ensure an optimal learning environment for our students.”

Funding for the building is included in Proposition 55, a bond measure on the March 2 statewide ballot.

AACSB International, headquartered in St. Louis, is a not-for-profit organization consisting of more than 900 educational organizations and corporations. Its mission is to further excellence in management education in colleges and universities.

Media Contacts: Anil K. Puri, dean of the College of Business and Economics, at (714) 278-2592 or
Pamela McLaren of Public Affairs at (714) 278-4852 or

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