Twenty-two highly accomplished professionals accepted into Saint Leo University's inaugural Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) program cohort began their doctoral studies at University Campus during the week of Dec. 30-Jan. 3, attending their first on-ground intersession at the Donald R. Tapia School of Business.
Saint Leo University's first doctoral degree offering, the DBA degree program represents a significant milestone in the university's history. At the same time, it is a natural continuation of the university's mission of offering a practical, effective model for life and leadership in a challenging world.
First DBA degree program cohort "extremely qualified"
"Our first cohort is extremely qualified to meet the demands of doctoral study and comprises accomplished leaders who hold management and executive positions in a wide array of fields," said Dr. Lorrie McGovern, assistant dean of graduate studies in business.
Students in Saint Leo's first DBA cohort are:
- Tammi-Lee Albert, Portland, Maine
- Antonio Barrios Quinones, Atlanta, Ga.
- Shirley Bruno, Atlanta, Ga.
- Joseph Capezza, Plant City, Fla.
- Bill Delgrego, Dade City, Fla.
- Michael Escudie, Tampa, Fla.
- Kevin Fox, Bristol, Tenn.
- Margaret Gary, Ocala, Fla.
- Stephen Harbison, Lakeland, Fla.
- Patrick Harris, Atlanta, Ga.
- Wayne Huggins, Savannah, Ga.
- Melissa Jenner, Chesapeake, Va.
- Billie Jarrell, Falls Church, Va.
- Amber Loring, Clearwater, Fla.
- Anne Maddox, Belleair, Fla.
- Joshua Paul, Chattanooga, Tenn.
- Keven Ricks, Chesapeake, Va.
- John Simonof, Jacksonville, Ark.
- Justin Strickland, Dallas, Texas
- Leslie Sukup, Medford, N.J.
- Eric Theodore, Dade City, Fla.
- Jaylene Wright, Houston, Texas
First seminar lays foundation for success
This first orientation seminar, a doctoral success lab, laid the foundation for the entire DBA degree program. Students became familiar with faculty, policies, procedures, research methods, academic writing resources, doctoral success factors, and more. They also participated in team-building activities.
Following the seminar, the students returned to their home states. They will continue to complete the rigorous course of study through online and other interactive communications, completing one online module-based course every eight weeks for two years.
The cohort will return to University Campus for two additional one-week intersession meetings at the beginning of the second and third years of study. The second seminar will focus on quantitative research methods, and the third is a dissertation seminar.
Following a doctoral written comprehensive exam at the end of their second year – which is the culmination of their doctoral students – the students will begin directed research to develop the required dissertation project.
The coursework and dissertation will take three to four years to complete, depending on the student, though students are permitted to take a maximum of seven years.
DBA degree: ultimate business credential
Designed with the needs of today's mobile professionals in mind, Saint Leo's DBA degree program meets the career needs of three groups of business professionals: those who wish to teach business at the college or university level; business professionals who are transitioning to new career goals; and consultants and executives seeking advancement in their respective fields.
"A DBA provides a pathway to senior leadership or consulting. It can also create the opportunity to help shape the next generation of business leaders or guide other professionals returning to the classroom for graduate education," said McGovern.
"A DBA indicates the highest level of expertise. It's the ultimate business credential."
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