JSU College of Business kicks off 50th anniversary celebrations

Jackson State University’s College of Business (COB) is celebrating its 50th anniversary. On Monday, July25, the college commemorated decades of success with a kick-off reception noting its milestones and the thousands of graduates produced.

“This means 50 years of excellence; 50 years of producing those excellent Black entrepreneurs, economists, accountants and just really doing the great work to move this state forward,” said JSU President Thomas K. Hudson, J.D. “It’s something the university is very proud of, and we want to continue that celebration of excellence.”

The COB has scheduled three events this fall to honor this special occasion: 

  • Notable Alumni Panel, Thursday, Oct. 20
  • Tailgate Party, Friday, Oct. 21
  • 50th Year Commemorative Celebration Banquet Friday, Nov. 1

The COB, authorized July 1, 1972, provides management education to a diverse student body, including those with historically disadvantaged backgrounds. It delivers its academic programs through two departments – Business Administration and Accounting, Finance, and Entrepreneurship.

“Since its founding, the College of Business has embarked on a more than exciting journey,” stated Fidelis Ikem, Ph.D., dean of the College of Business. “As I reflect over the pioneering work of the faculty and staff over the last half century, I find many accomplishments leading us to this milestone.”

Ikem was appointed the eighth dean of the College of Business in July 2019. Under his leadership, the COB continues to grow. This fall, the college will offer a new Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Supply Chain Management, including the two new online degrees in Bachelor of Business Administration and a Master of Public Accountancy.

The evolution of the COB’s legacy began with the establishment of the department of economics in 1963. In 1965 the Board of Trustees of Institutions of Higher Learning approved the expansion and reorganization of the business program with the approval of the Department of Business Administration.

In 1969, three other undergraduate programs leading to Bachelor of Science degrees were authorized: accounting, secretarial science, and business education. July 1, 1972, under the presidency of Dr. John A. Peoples, the Board of Trustees authorized the merger of the Division of Business and the Department of Economics. 

These two entities became known as the School of Business and Economics, with an approximate enrollment of 1,000 students. In 1995, Jackson State University’s School of Business became the sixth school of business at an HBCU to earn accreditation from the American Assembly of Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). The COB remains in the six percent of business schools worldwide, with the AACSB accreditation.