Valparaiso University announces Niclas L. Erhardt, Ph.D., will join its faculty as dean of the College of Business, effective August 3, 2020. Most recently, Erhardt has served as associate dean of the Maine Business School at the University of Maine.

In his role as dean, Erhardt will be responsible for the strategic leadership, coordination and guidance of the College of Business. Erhardt brings more than 18 years of higher education experience in various positions relating to business and management.

Erhardt has spent his career strengthening alumni relationships and building external partnerships in the business community. One of his most successful initiatives as associate dean was the creation of the Corporate Classroom internship program, cultivating key partnerships with three major employers in Maine.

“We look forward to the dedication Dean Erhardt will bring to the College of Business as he ushers in a new era for the College,” said Rick Gillman, D.A., interim provost. “Dean Erhardt’s tenure ensures business students at Valparaiso University will benefit from real-world, hands-on experience and form relationships with highly successful business alumni across the country and around the world.”

In addition to his role as associate dean at the University of Maine, Erhardt also served as the founding director of the school’s Professional Development Center, interim dean for the undergraduate school of business and professor of management. During his professional career, Dean Erhardt has also spent time as a visiting professor at Providence College.

“It is with great honor and excitement that I join Valpo and the College of Business,” said Erhardt. “I look forward to working with the faculty, staff and the business community to make meaningful and innovative changes to sustain Valpo’s tradition of excellence and transformative educational experience for its students.”

Erhardt brings a background of sound fiscal planning, effective strategic administration and experience developing innovative and interdisciplinary programs. Over the past year, he oversaw the creation of a new major in sport management and launched the school’s first online business degree program.

Erhardt’s previous experience leading student enrollment and retention initiatives will continue the College’s trajectory of growth, while preserving its distinguished placement rate of 98.1%. His dedication to business education will enable recently established programs, such as supply chain and logistics management and integrated business and engineering, to flourish and cultivate student success.

His areas of expertise include organizational design, innovation and creativity, workplace dynamics and virtual team and organizational collaboration. Valpo looks forward to the wonderful outcomes that Erhardt will accomplish as he raises the profile and identity of the College both externally and internally.

Originally from Stockholm, Sweden, Erhardt holds a Ph.D. in human resource management and labor relations and a master’s in industrial and labor relations from Rutgers University as well as a master’s in industrial relations from Iowa State University and a bachelor’s from Cornell University. Erhardt and his wife, Devon DeMarco, very much look forward to joining the Valparaiso University Community.