Management Department Developing Plans for New Business Major

Dr. Heather Odle-Dusseau, Chair of the Management Department at Gettysburg College (Photo courtesy of Gettysburg College)

Dr. Heather Odle-Dusseau, Chair of the Management Department at Gettysburg College (Photo courtesy of Gettysburg College)

By Phoebe Doscher, Staff Writer

Plans are underway in the college’s management department to introduce a new business major.
According to department chairperson Dr. Heather Odle-Dusseau, the department has already spent time developing the course listing and the dual-major aspect of this new major. They will continue to work on the proposal through the spring, including planning capstone and elective courses.

Originally, the Provost’s Office requested that the department consider adding a business major to enhance the school’s success with recruitment. This addition would also be a way to add curricular innovation for incoming students, many of whom look for a business major in a potential college.

Odle-Dusseau mentioned that the major is being considered by the department with the college’s best interests and future demographic shifts in mind.

“It’s really in response our department being asked to consider this as a new curricular idea for recruitment to benefit the college as a whole,” she said.

Presently, the Management department has a business minor, which encompasses many of the same courses and topics of the potential business major including accounting, marketing, and finance.

A business major, however, would include a capstone project and more specific interdisciplinary courses.

Additionally, it would operate as a dual or secondary major, meaning students would pair it with their primary major and complete the requirements of a double major.

Gettysburg College is not keen to have pre-professional majors, but the business major would not be a departure from that philosophy. In order to continue to enhance the liberal arts experience, the business major would pair well across many disciplines, with the dual major and electives reinforcing this idea.
Even in its early stages, the business major has been well-received by many departments in the school. Professors in areas from economics to philosophy attended an interest meeting.

Odle-Dusseau commented on the importance of interdisciplinary studies in conjunction with business.

“Business is everywhere,” she said, “and the study of business is interdisciplinary, so it requires us to go beyond a traditional business program. It’s a great opportunity to make direct links with other majors. Students who apply will have to make an explicit connection to their primary major.”

Odle-Dusseau also hopes that the department’s primary major, Organization and Management Studies (OMS) remains a strong part of Gettysburg’s major offerings.

She noted that it is very popular among students with a range of broad perspectives.

“The management department went through an external review in the spring and, as evaluated by professors from other colleges and universities, the OMS major is strong,” she said.

Looking ahead, the next step would likely be working with the Academic Policy and Program Committee, which would propose to the faculty the business major as part of Gettysburg’s curriculum.

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Author: Phoebe Doscher

Phoebe Doscher ’22 is a staff writer for the features and news sections and copy editor for the features section of The Gettysburgian. Originally from Sandy Hook, CT, she plans to double major in English with a Writing Concentration and Theatre Arts at Gettysburg College. Aside from writing and editing, she studies voice at the Sunderman Conservatory of Music and can often be seen working on and offstage in the theatre department.

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