Dr. Gene Sullivan, Professor of Accounting, has a unique perspective from which to speak about the history of the School of Business, having served the longest of any faculty member (since 1987). Sullivan stated in a recent interview, "The best schools are made of the best faculty and the best students, and Liberty University School of Business has always had both. The success of the [Liberty] School of Business has come from its focus.”
“Through the years, the School of Business faculty has always been focused on the goal of training Champions for Christ. It’s not a job. It’s a calling,” says Sullivan. “They’re here to make a difference. Despite their previous success in industry careers, they have chosen to embrace the mission of Liberty University.” While speaking on the faculty and staff of the School of Business, Sullivan compared them to the body of Christ. “Like the body of Christ, the School of Business has many different parts,” according to Sullivan. “We’re members of the same body. We each play our role.”
Not only does the School of Business have the best faculty, it also has the best students. This is clear from their success after graduation as well as their accomplishments earned while at Liberty. Many student clubs have recently opened in the School of Business, an accomplishment depending primarily on student interest and leadership. The clubs have been a great addition to the School of Business, as they bring in prospective employers for purpose of networking. They are also responsible for many of the awards the School of Business has recently achieved, including American Marketing Association Case Competition finalist teams for three consecutive years, Fed Challenge Economics finalist teams, and Society of Human Resources Management finalist teams, all of which have been earned in the last 3 to 4 years.
Graduating students have always had a very high success rate, especially in the field of accounting, as companies are looking for accountants with the ethical character they know Liberty University instills in its Champions for Christ. To Dr. Sullivan, the reason for the success of the School of Business is clear. The faculty are focused and dedicated. The students are willing to step into leadership positions. The goal of training Champions for Christ is consistently achieved. According to Dr. Sullivan, “the education here is just better.”
In October 2011, Chancellor Jerry Falwell Jr. announced that the Graduate School of Business would be named the A.W. and Lois Overton Graduate School of Business in honor of longtime supporters who played a significant role in the history of Liberty University. As it was Dr. Jerry Falwell's vision to build a world-class university, Alton W. and Lois Overton were devoted to turning this vision into a reality.
By Katie Lightle, Liberty University