College of Business > News & Events > Q&A with Jaclyn Jensen, New Associate Dean for Student Success
By Nadia Alfadel Coloma | Photo by Kathy Hillegonds /
April 8, 2021 /
Posted in: Faculty, College and Schools, Students /
Jaclyn Jensen is an associate professor of management at the Driehaus College of Business and the former director of the Master’s in Human Resources Program at the Kellstadt Graduate School of Business. Since she joined the faculty nearly 10 years ago, she’s taught at all levels of the business college, from undergrad to doctorate. In February 2021 she added a new title to her professional repertoire, having been named the college’s first-ever associate dean for student success.
In this Q&A we talk with Jensen about her new position, what it means for the college and most importantly, how her work as associate dean supports the success of DePaul’s business students.
Tell us about your new role.
My new role focuses on the success of all students at the Driehaus College of Business and the Kellstadt Graduate School of Business—whether that’s success in the classroom, in building a community of engagement, supporting student retention, career planning and everything else on that all-important path to graduation.
What current priorities are you focused on?
Planning for the fall and reimagining the experience and value of a DePaul business degree is my current priority. This past year has been incredibly challenging for so many reasons and now looking ahead, students are feeling stressed about the COVID recession and are anxious about their future. They want a level of engagement with faculty and programs that will help them network, build connections and find a job.
As our college prepares to reintroduce in-person learning in the fall, I feel it is important that we welcome students back with their concerns and expectations in mind, while also recognizing that many in our community have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic. My approach to fall planning has an eye toward inclusion; I want to ensure that all of our students feel accepted and supported in their personal and professional journeys, as they begin the new academic year.
Why is it important to have a position within the college that focuses on student success?
It is important because our programs must deliver a certain level of value to students that encompasses retention, graduation rates and career support. We must prepare students for the jobs they want upon graduation and we must do so in a way that resonates with our university’s Vincentian values of compassion, support and inclusion.
What do you see as the main barriers to student success and how do you hope to alleviate them?
All the things we’ve been hearing about regarding the devastating effects of the global pandemic and the need to help our students recover from this crisis are true. This crisis has caused students to suffer setbacks, job loss, loss of loved ones and on top of that so many are struggling with their mental health. To help alleviate these issues we need to embrace the whole student when we see them again this fall, and to recreate that sense of belonging and connection that has been shaken by a year of living and learning virtually.
We have always been committed to delivering quality, accessible education for all, but now we need to do it in a way that sets our students up for success in a post-pandemic economy, especially for those students who have been direly affected by the crisis.
How is the college working to prepare students for success in the upcoming academic year?
Before the pandemic, our college was already talking about the “Driehaus student of the future.” This conversation could not be more relevant or important today as we think about reimagining the Driehaus College of Business experience for our students this fall. To that end we have an incredible opportunity ahead of us. Our goal for the fall is to show our students that we understand what they’ve lived through this past year and we understand their expectations for engagement in the fall. We are ready to knock it out of the park, both in the classroom and beyond.
How is the college reimagining the classroom experience (both in-person and online) to enhance student success?
The college is shifting to a teaching approach that focuses on active engagement in the classroom, and moving that engagement to a co-curricular experience that blends in-person, online and hybrid course offerings. We are essentially blending the best of online and in-person learning– taking what we have learned over the last year from online teaching and marrying that with the best of what can be delivered in a live session, whether that’s live in the classroom or live via Zoom.
What are your hopes for the student body at the Driehaus College of Business?
My hopes are that our students find a community for themselves here, whether with classmates, faculty, mentors, industry professionals, student organizations or – hopefully – all of the above! After this challenging year of learning remotely, I know I am hungry to rediscover connections with colleagues and students and be reinvigorated with the energy of new challenges and opportunities. Ultimately, my goal is to create an environment where students feel accepted and supported in their chosen career paths, and my hope is that we can build that kind of community together.
If you’re a DePaul business student who wishes to get in touch with Associate Dean Jaclyn Jensen for support, you can contact her at ADStudentSuccess@depaul.edu.