ASU finalizes merge with Thunderbird School of Global Management

The main entrance at the Thunderbird School of Global Management on Monday, Jan. 12, 2015. ASU recently announced plans to merge with the Thunderbird School of Global Management. (Daniel Kwon/The State Press) The main entrance at the Thunderbird School of Global Management on Monday, Jan. 12, 2015. ASU recently announced plans to merge with the Thunderbird School of Global Management. (Daniel Kwon/The State Press)

ASU announced it had finalized plans to merge with the Thunderbird School of Global Management in December.

The merge will bring the Glendale graduate degree institution into ASU, while retaining the name and programs offered at Thunderbird, ASU spokesman Mark Johnson said in a press release.

ASU also plans to add programs to Thunderbird’s business oriented curricula, specifically stating it hopes to add an executive education program to its offerings.

ASU President Michael Crow said in a statement the merge will benefit both institutions.

“This will create new opportunities for our students, and it will provide a platform for showcasing ASU’s strengths to a new set of partners around the world,” Crow said in a statement. “Thunderbird students will have access to a much broader range of courses, as well as the advantages that come with being part of a major research university.”

The institutions hope students from both universities will be able to enroll in integrated classes beginning with the 2015 fall semester, according to a press release.

The two entities plan to remain separate but integrate graduate degree programs at Thunderbird to enhance the variety already offered at the W. P. Carey School of Business, according to a press release from Thunderbird.

Thunderbird students will have access to ASU’s resources, but will primarily remain based out of Thunderbird’s existing campus, located at 59th Avenue and Greenway Road, about 2 miles from the West campus.

Crow also said he hoped the merge would be beneficial to current ASU undergraduate students, who can take advantage of Thunderbird’s programs post-graduation, which can increase enrollment at Thunderbird as well as expand opportunities for ASU students.

Outgoing Thunderbird president Larry Penley echoed Crow’s optimism and said in a statement that the shared missions of the schools will help both in the future.

“This is a big moment in Thunderbird’s history, and we are excited by the significant opportunity it represents to join with one of the world’s most innovative universities,” Penley said in a statement.

According to Thunderbird’s website, the school has about 750 full-time graduate students who attend classes at the Glendale campus, but students from around the world can receive degrees from Thunderbird through programs throughout the U.S., Europe, South America and Africa. Thunderbird also boasts a major center in Geneva.

Thunderbird offers master’s degree programs in global management and global affairs and management, as well as master’s certificates in global management, global affairs and global development.

The merge will also allow Thunderbird to become financially self-sustaining, eliminating a debt Thunderbird has carried, according to Thunderbird’s website.

Crow named Allen Morrison the new CEO and director general of the integrated Thunderbird, Johnson said.

In a statement, Morrison called the merge a “unique global partnership,” which will bring confidence to students from both institutions.

“Thunderbird is stronger as a part of ASU, and ASU is stronger for having Thunderbird as a part of the institution,” Morrison said.

 

Reach the reporter at cvanek@asu.edu or follow @CorinaVanek on Twitter

Like The State Press on Facebook and follow @statepress on Twitter


Get the best of State Press delivered straight to your inbox.