College of Business and Economics appoints a new dean

Photo Courtesy: NCAT COBE

Jim Colman

Photo Courtesy: NCAT COBE

Akilah Kafele, theYARD Lead Reporter

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Dr. Kevin J. James, N.C.A&T’s College of Business and Economics interim dean for nearly two years, has officially been appointed as the permanent Dean.

For several months, the Administration sought after the best potential candidates throughout the nation to fulfill the position. The candidate would have had to exemplify traits including strong communication skills, demonstration of collaborative work, and a commitment to student success, according to the job description.

The former dean, Dr. Beryl McEwen was promoted to Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs in 2017 leaving the position vacant.

“His strong background prepared him well for this challenge, and his performance while serving as interim dean was convincing. I look forward to his leadership in the months and years ahead,” said McEwen.

After obtaining his Bachelor of Business Administration in accounting and his Master of Business Administration from Middle Tennessee State University, James worked at the “Big Four” services company PricewaterhouseCoopers as a senior auditor and auditor team leader. He then completed his Doctor of Philosophy in accounting from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville along with a minor in psychology.

“Once I got into accounting, I found that I liked the logical and analytical mind that it required and I enjoyed what I was doing so I was able to stick with it,” said James.

His direct work within the accounting and business field resulted in his profession of academics. Before working at N.C. A&T, James spent time at Middle Tennessee University as an associate accounting professor and Director of the Mastery of Accountancy program. In 2010, James took the accounting and finance department chair position within N.C. A&T’s College of Business and Economics.

Within his new position, James plans to continue helping the College of Business and Economics grow and thrive through more company partnerships, town hall meetings, and increase data analytics in the curriculum to better prepare students for the corporate world among other things.

“One thing we’ve had a big focus on is increasing study abroad opportunities for students, we’ve raised money for scholarships that we can offer for study abroad,” said James.

Along with more study abroad opportunities, more access to technology, leadership, and entrepreneurship training, as well as a new innovation collaboration lab are just a few of new implementations that James and the College of Business and Economics plan to continue to develop throughout the future.

Due to his past employment on campus, James is not only very familiar with the different departments, but he has also spent years developing relationships with students who have matriculated through the university.

“The opportunity to come here and be apart of a quality college, and to be directly impacting so many African-American students, was extremely appealing to me,” said James.

“It’s very very meaningful for me.”