PULLMAN, Wash. — M. Chris Paxson has been named new associate dean for undergraduate programs in the College of Business and Economics at Washington State University effective Jan. 1.
WSU alumna Paxson is an associate professor of Hotel and Restaurant Administration. She has received numerous awards for excellence in both instructing and advising, and was recently given the Golden Key National Honor Society Advisor of the Year Award at the university.
“Chris Paxson is an experienced educator who is clearly committed to the success of our students,” says CBE Dean A. Gale Sullenberger. “She has a firm grasp of the many issues and missions of both WSU and the college, including recruiting and retaining the best students, strategic planning and curriculum issues, and corporate and alumni relations. As associate dean for undergraduate programs, she will play a vital role in ensuring we meet our goal to provide the best business education in the Pacific Northwest.”
Associate Dean Ernst Stromsdorfer’s responsibilities are now focused primarily on research and extended degree programs. The college, in cooperation with WSU’s Extended University Services, was recently given approval to offer a four-year statewide bachelor’s degree in business administration. The initial sites for this program will be four Washington community colleges. Further expansion of the extended business degree for additional community colleges, corporate sites and Native American reservations is planned.
In the new position, Paxson will be responsible for all undergraduate academic programs including curriculum and program development, enrollment management, student recruitment and retention, advising, and monitoring accreditation compliance. She will coordinate CBE activities with several WSU offices, such as summer school, the honors program and financial aid, and will be responsible for implementing many aspects of the college’s strategic plan. Those include developing a new prebusiness program, formulating a marketing plan, increasing student participation in research projects, implementing new business minors and reviewing the content of core courses. She will also continue to teach one course per semester in the Hotel and Restaurant Administration program where she has been a member of the faculty since 1989.
Paxson’s experiences in higher education have taken her into areas including women’s studies, career services and placement, and psychology and broad areas of research. She is an invited representative to a collaborative research alliance begun by the Educational Institute of the American Hotel and Motel Association and is researching teams in hotels, management culture and regulation.
With a bachelor’s degree in psychology from The Ohio State University, and a master’s and doctorate in experimental psychology from WSU, she joined the HRA program in 1989 as an assistant professor and became an associate professor in 1996. From 1987 to 1989, she was an instructor in CBE’s Management and Systems area of personnel/human resources. She has completed postgraduate coursework in managerial accounting and marketing.

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