The goal: audacious. The challenge: daunting. The
Yash P. Gupta wants to help make Johns Hopkins' new
Carey Business School
one of the most innovative and most prominent schools of
business in the world.
"This is a great opportunity to create a world-class
business school in a world-class university," said Gupta,
appointed by the board of trustees Sunday to serve as the
school's first dean.
The university aims to build a school that
purposefully teaches students not only business skills
but also critical cross-disciplinary knowledge taught in
other Johns Hopkins divisions.
It wants to prepare business students broadly, to arm
them with all the skills they need to lead companies and
organizations in emerging industries.
In other words, the university wants to reinvent the
model of business education.
A worthy goal. But why would someone who has already
spent 14 years as dean of three prominent, established
business schools want to involve himself with a startup?
"It's a great opportunity," Gupta said. "If there is
no risk, there is no reward. In this case, the
reward is creating a business school that is one of the
leading business schools in the world Š truly
the most innovative business school in the country."
Gupta, who most recently served as dean of the
University of Southern California's Marshall School of
Business from 2004 to 2006, will begin in his new position
"Yash is a visionary academic leader," said university
President William R. Brody, who recommended Gupta to the
trustees. "He is a creative and resourceful strategic
planner. He is a scholar and a teacher. And he has been a
builder of close and meaningful relationships, within
schools, within universities and between the university and
"He has the imagination, the energy and the skill to
build the Carey Business School into one of the nation's
most innovative and respected," Brody said.
"Dr. Gupta is an energetic leader with a great
appetite for work," said Kristina M. Johnson, provost and
senior vice president for academic affairs. "He will build
relationships across Johns Hopkins, establishing programs
of 'selective excellence,' thus distinguishing the Carey
Business School and deepening the Johns Hopkins brand."
The school, built on a tradition of business education
at Johns Hopkins that dates to 1916, was launched last
January on the strength of a $50 million gift from trustee
emeritus William Polk Carey through his W.P. Carey
Foundation. The new school already collaborates with other
Johns Hopkins divisions to offer, for instance, joint
master's/MBA programs in biotechnology, nursing, public
health, communication, information and telecommunications
systems, and government.
"We have a strong base to leverage from to create a
new kind of business school," Gupta said. The first
priority, he said, is to form even stronger working
relationships with other Johns Hopkins schools, where
faculty and students are hatching new ideas in science,
health, technology, international relations and other
"The issue is one of innovation," he said. "The
business schools that can teach students how to be
innovative and how to understand the process of innovation
will be the anchor points for the evolution of new
Other key tasks in building the new school, Gupta
said, include making program and curriculum
decisions, establishing partnerships with the business
community, the critical undertaking of faculty recruitment
and "the mother of all, if you like, fund raising."
John J. Fernandes, president and chief executive
officer of the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of
Business, said he has followed many dean searches. Johns
Hopkins, he said, has chosen well.
"I said that Johns Hopkins is going to need someone
who is going to put heart and soul into the job, someone
who knows curriculum, a successful innovator, a
relationship builder and a prolific fund-raiser," Fernandes
said, "someone who will work tirelessly, who has the
vision, the energy and the human relations skills.
"Yash has been successful in all those areas," he
said. "This situation requires someone who can go in a lot
of directions, the right way, at a hundred miles an hour. I
think you've got the right person."
Gupta has been dean at the University of Colorado at
Denver, the University of Washington and, most recently,
USC, where he led the creation of a new five-year strategic
plan. During his tenure, USC's Marshall School raised more
than $55 million; expanded its faculty; increased emphasis
on faculty research; created research centers focused on
such areas as global business, bio-business, sports
business and brand management; reorganized the job
placement center for students and alumni; and developed a
new innovation-focused MBA curriculum.
Gupta was dean of the University of Washington
Business School from 1999 to 2004, a period in which its
endowment grew from $44 million to $82 million, the MBA
program was redesigned to enhance students' global
perspective, and the school's entire curriculum was
re-examined. The school also established a technology
management MBA for scientists and engineers.
Gupta also headed the College of Business and
Administration at the University of Colorado at Denver from
1992 to 1999, doubling the number of research grants,
expanding the faculty and student body, establishing
mentoring programs and setting up a program where teams of
graduate students and faculty provided consulting for local
Gupta said he looks forward to meeting and working
with the current faculty and staff of the Carey School. "I
really believe that they have an opportunity to be a part
of a great school in the making," he said. "What a sense of
pride you can have that you are the builders, the
A widely published scholar in operations management,
Gupta served before he became a dean on the faculties of
the University of Louisville, University of Manitoba and
Memorial University of Newfoundland. He is a 1973 graduate
of Panjab University in India, holds a master's degree in
production management earned in 1974 from Brunel
University, West London, and earned a PhD in management
sciences in 1976 from the University of Bradford in
Gupta is married with two sons. One is participating
in the Teach for America program, and the other is a senior
at the University of Washington.
For more about the Carey Business School, go to