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School of Business Hires New MBA Director

By Liz Monahan
Posted on 3 July 2018 | 9:42 am — 

The College of Charleston School of Business one-year MBA program, recently named first in the nation for job placement by U.S. News & World Report, isn’t just attracting accolades — it’s also attracting new leadership.

This July, the ranked program hired Ron Magnuson, former director of administration for the Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business at the University of Pittsburgh, to serve as CofC’s new director of MBA and professional programming.

As director, Magnuson plans to provide strategic guidance and direction to enhance the MBA program and is dedicated to working closely with faculty, staff, students and the business community to develop additional opportunities for professional programming.

Dean of the College of Charleston School of Business, Alan Shao, has big expectations for the former Panther. “I am thrilled that Ron has chosen Charleston as his new home and am confident that he will continue to bolster the reputation of our world-class MBA program,” says Shao, who served as interim MBA director for the 2017-2018 academic year.

Magnuson says he’s excited to work with an MBA program that has so many strong features including a one-year cohort, a mentoring program, international trip, outstanding faculty, 100% placement, executive forums and, of course, a number-one destination location.

“My vision is to further distinguish the MBA program by providing unparalleled ROI to students and to graduate students who uniquely demonstrate the professional development skills desired by employers,” he says. “Ultimately, we plan to leverage the world-class reputation of the MBA program to offer other quality programs such as an EMBA and executive education.”

During his tenure with Katz, Magnuson worked closely with the dean, 110 staff and 90 full-time faculty to coordinate the strategic planning for the business school, which is consistently ranked in the top 20 U.S. public business schools. He also served as a clinical assistant professor (2014-2018), where his primary responsibility was coordinating and teaching the MBA capstone class. He also taught a number of undergraduate and executive courses, including business ethics, labor relations and leadership.

Although Magnuson has dedicated over a decade of his professional life to higher education, he spent most of his career in the corporate world. After receiving his Electrical Engineering degree from Bucknell University, he worked as an engineer for two different utility companies for about six years.

He then earned an MBA and was appointed to various management positions at Allegheny Energy. His two key executive positions were the Executive Director of Human Resources and Vice President of the Customer Business Unit.

As part of Allegheny’s management development program, Ron participated in a number of external professional development programs including the Advanced Management Program at Wharton.

Magnuson has always been very involved in community and industry organizations and was a member of several Boards of Directors. He was the chairman of the Energy Association of Pennsylvania, the Marketing Executive Conference and the Pitt Greensburg Advisory Board. The latter gave him the opportunity to be a member of the University of Pittsburgh Board of Trustees.

A father of five children and grandfather to three, Ron is a resident of Daniel Island, where he lives with his wife Charlene.

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