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SFU Beedie celebrates 50 years of its Executive MBA

Dec 13, 2018

SFU President Andrew Petter addresses attendees of SFU Beedie’s EMBA 50th Anniversary Reception

Alumni, faculty and staff of SFU’s Beedie School of Business spanning the past five decades gathered in Vancouver for a special reception celebrating the 50th anniversary of the school’s Executive MBA (EMBA) program.

SFU President Andrew Petter addressed the audience of more than 200 at the event, honouring the evolution of the business school and contribution to the university as a whole since its foundation. Petter shared the stage with Ali Dastmalchian, SFU Beedie’s Dean, and Andrew Gemino, Associate Dean of Graduate Programs, who both shared reflections on the EMBA program, its history and alumni.

They shared the story of the program’s origins in the Faculty of Arts at SFU’s Burnaby campus, its move downtown to Harbour Centre, and finally its growth in the new home of the Segal Graduate School, as a result of the Segal family’s generous donation of the new campus.

“We were honoured to be joined by so many EMBA alumni from throughout the program’s 50-year history for this milestone celebration,” says Ali Dastmalchian, Dean of SFU’s Beedie School of Business. “It was a wonderful opportunity to catch up with old friends, reminisce about the program, and to make new connections among this highly accomplished group.”

Astrid Eckerle and Graeme Kitagawa perform a “Dance Through the Decades”

The EMBA program—the first to be offered outside the USA at its launch in 1968—was commemorated in a video, featuring archive footage and interviews with SFU Beedie faculty and alumni from various eras. Robin Smith, the earliest alumnus of the program attending the event, who was a part of the class of 1969, was presented with special gift.

In addition to speeches, the attendees were treated to an original “Dance Through the Decades” performance choreographed by local dancer and choreographer Keiran Bohay, and performed by Astrid Eckerle and Graeme Kitagawa. This showcased music and dance moves from each decade of the EMBA program’s history.

Following the formal program, the guests enjoyed a lively networking reception in the historic Segal Graduate School.