By Carlo Valladares
“I was always interested in going global,” said Robert Valli, the new College of Management Dean, in an interview with the Pioneer in the new College of Management offices in the library. Valli’s appointment was announced in May 2015 and he is currently in his first semester as Dean of the College of Management, which is made up of the School of Business, the School of Professional Accountancy and the new School of Computer Science, Innovation, and Management Engineering.
Valli was most recently at the University of Illinois, where he served as director of Illinois Business Consulting (IBC), the largest student-led consulting organization in the United States. “I was one of the first people to invest in private enterprise under the new Russian-American treaty, which is actually out of Cyprus (Republic of Cyprus) in 1991,” Valli said.
It is this multinational approach that he wants to bring to the College and its students. He plans to begin a program at LIU Post called the Innovation Immersion Program (IIP), which has local organizations on campuses all over the world, including the University of Illinois.
“The Innovation Immersion Program is a student-run, global consultancy that bridges interdisciplinary gaps to connect students to technology and entrepreneurial companies, creating international networks for lifelong bonds. Students participating in our expanding network develop professional skills and collaborate with like-minded colleagues from all over the world to accelerate the growth of technological ventures in a multitude of industries,” according to InnovationImmersion.net, IIP’s official website. On campus, the program will be called
LIU IQ.“IIP is a way for us to form alliances globally because it is made up of science and technology universities from Israel, Taiwan, Singapore, Korea, Sweden, just to name a few,” he said with excitement. Students will be trained alongside industry executives for roughly 16 weeks in collaborative teams to identify and solve business venture problems.
The collaborations will be through virtual meetings. Students could work with other IIP scholars from “Taiwan or Singapore,” Valli explained. “Imagine going into an interview, and saying: I did LIU IQ, and I worked with a big conglomerate in New York City, and this is the type of problem we looked at, here are the actions we took, I learned to work in a group, here are the results.” It is this edge that the former director of the Kauffman Global Foundation wants the students in his College to have.
“Dr. Valli is at home in business, technological innovation, and higher education,” said Dr. Jeffrey Kane, LIU vice president for Academic Affairs in a May 2015 statement announcing Valli’s appointment. “His understanding of the intersection of these aspects of the College of Management will generate new opportunities within the College itself and for LIU Post as a campus. To put it simply, Dr. Valli’s appointment will be a catalyst for powerful new programs, partnerships, and transformative experiences for students.”