At one time, the United States was big enough and rich enough for American businesses to focus their concerns only within their borders and become very successful doing so.
Those days are long gone, said Gary Insch, the incoming dean of the University of Toledo’s College of Business and Innovation.
Mr. Insch said he believes that kind of narrow thinking needs to be similarly extinguished. He often illustrates the point to his classes by challenging them to scan a business newspaper.
“I defy any of them to pick up any article in the Wall Street Journal and not have an international implication from it,” he said.
Mr. Insch, 54, was named to the position at UT earlier this week. He comes to Toledo from West Virginia University, where he spent the last 12 years, most recently as associate dean for graduate programs and associate professor of management.
He said Friday that he’s eager to get to know the existing faculty, staff, and students and then work to attract the best people going forward. “UT’s already a well-oiled machine,” he said. “It’s a great school, it’s a gem that a lot of people don’t know enough about, frankly.”
Mr. Insch said the University of Toledo was particularly attractive to him because of its focus on creating international relationships and its efforts to educate students beyond the classroom. In a phone interview Friday, he said that 80 percent of business undergraduates at UT have some type of internship.
Officials involved with the university’s search committee hope that Mr. Insch’s leadership will only improve those areas.
“He was far and away the committee’s favorite. Every constituency liked him,” interim provost John Barrett said, adding that he was impressed by Mr. Insch from the first interview. Mr. Insch holds a bachelor’s degree in finance from Brigham Young University, an MBA in international business and marketing from the University of Utah, and a PhD in international business and strategy from Indiana University.
“Gary really struck me as thoughtful,” Mr. Barrett continued. “He knew all the standard stuff but wasn’t just necessarily going to take a standard line.”
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