On February 22, 2019, the Suleman Dawood School of Business (SDSB) at LUMS received accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International) joining 835 institutions worldwide and becoming the first business school in the country to receive this honour. SDSB is also the only business school in the SAARC region to have been accredited by AACSB outside of India. In order to commemorate this momentous occasion Dr. Arshad Ahmad, Vice Chancellor LUMS, held a celebratory dinner at his residence in LUMS. Prominent faculty, alumni, former Deans of SDSB and senior leadership of the University were in attendance.
Amidst exciting conversation and congratulatory greetings, there were a number of speeches that reflected on the journey towards accreditation and how this feather in the LUMS cap will help propel the University forward. Syed Babar Ali, Founder and Patron of LUMS, Dr. Arshad Ahmad, Vice Chancellor LUMS, Dr. Alnoor Bhimani, Honorary Dean, SDSB, Dr. Arif Butt, Former Dean, SDSB, Dr. Jawad Syed, Former Dean, SDSB and Dr. Fazal Jawad Seyyed, Director of Accreditation, all talked about how this accreditation was a challenging nine-year journey, which was well worth it in the end.
Dr. Ahmad expressed the fierce ambition of the founders saying that, “With humble beginnings in two little buildings not far from here, the founders of LUMS had the audacity to dream of a School that would make this University the first choice for parents to send their children to; that would excite the business community and the public sector to train their best talent in this Schools’ executive programmes; and that would lead the way to inspire a family of Schools which has made LUMS into a comprehensive University today.”
The School’s becoming a part of an international league of premier institutions opens more opportunities for student exchanges, collaborations with universities abroad, and a continued influx of top-tier faculty and students. Dr. Bhimani, spoke of the scope of this accreditation and the increased visibility of the University, “From here on we will see a lot more scholars from abroad coming to see LUMS. There will also see Lahore, they will see Pakistan, and they will go back with very positive stories of what they’ve seen. So in fact, AACSB Accreditation will change the face of Pakistan externally.”
Everyone present also acknowledged the amazing work that the accreditation team led by Dr. Fazal Jawad Seyyed put in, without whom this milestone would not have been possible. However, all the speakers, as well as the guests, were in unanimous agreement that accreditation was not an end goal but an achievement that was going to steer LUMS forward to further heights. Babar Sahib, along with appreciating everyone’s contributions also said, “This is just a starting point from where we need to continue our work to maintain the standards we have achieved.”
Dr. Ahmad reiterated this sentiment saying, “While accreditation is an achievement worth celebrating the hard work of many who are in this room, it is also an opportunity to reimagine what we must do in the coming decades to make our founders proud and to inspire the next generation of leaders to take LUMS to higher levels of success.”
Overall, it was a wonderful celebratory evening that showed promise of greater things to come for the University and its vibrant community.