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SEAS Dean Looks to Expand Collaborations with HBS

The School of Engineering and Applied Sciences.
The School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. By Jacqueline S. Chea
By Luke W. Xu, Crimson Staff Writer

In anticipation of the fall 2020 expansion of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences to Allston, Dean of SEAS Francis J. Doyle III said his faculty are preparing a number of collaborative initiatives with their neighbor-to-be, Harvard Business School.

In a March interview, Doyle said SEAS has been working to launch initiatives in advance of the move, rather than waiting until the transition is over.

“We've got a bunch of initiatives that are anticipating how much more convenient and optimal and efficient it's going to be when we're in Allston, but we don't want to wait until that point,” he said. “We want to have those things running now, maybe work out a few of those kinks, and then we move over in 2020, those things can really accelerate.”

Doyle said one of those initiatives is the joint MS/MBA degree, announced in June 2017, whose courses will be jointly taught by SEAS and HBS faculty. The program is designed to “provide a strong foundation in general management, build design skills, and extend students’ understanding of engineering,” according to a press release. Its first cohort will matriculate in August 2018.

SEAS also recently launched a certificate program in Business Analytics, and its first cohort started in March. The program is a joint venture between SEAS, HBS, the Faculty of Arts and Sciences’ Statistics Department, and 2U Inc., a company that specializes in online degree programs. The nine-month program features online seminars and two “on-campus learning experiences” at HBS, according to a press release.

Doyle said the certificate program’s curriculum is collaborative in nature, teaching concepts from data science, marketing, programming, and databases.

“It's pulled our faculty together to teach,” he said. “Both deans, Dean Nohria and myself, were saying how it’s so exciting to watch our faculty come together who have never taught together before, and are team teaching, and are doing very innovative things across these schools.”

Doyle said this kind of collaboration between schools will likely increase further after the 2020 expansion. He also said he thinks these types of collaborative programs may expand to include more schools across the University.

“These units that they're putting together for the online course are going to find relevance here in the courses that we teach in the College, at the Business School, with the graduate students,” he said. “This is pedagogically leading to some innovations that I think are going to have direct impact on the residential students.”

Staff writer Luke W. Xu can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @duke_of_luke_.

Correction: July 8, 2018

A previous version of this article incorrectly stated that SEAS and HBS' certificate program in Business Analytics is an eight week-long program. In fact, the program usually requires nine months to complete.

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Harvard Business SchoolSEASAllston

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