McGill Desautels Appoints New Permanent Dean: MBA News |

McGill Desautels Appoints New Permanent Dean: MBA News

By Tim Dhoul

Updated December 6, 2019 Updated December 6, 2019

A long-serving finance professor at the George Washington University School of Business has been named as the next dean of McGill University’s Desautels Faculty of Management.

Isabelle Bajeux-Besnainou’s appointment ends McGill Desautels’ search for a new permanent dean – a process that began after Peter Todd stepped down last summer – a year ahead of schedule – after almost a decade at the helm of the Montréal-based school.

Changes to McGill MBA under previous dean

Under Todd’s tenure, McGill Desautels controversially, at the time, took the decision in 2010 to move the McGill MBA program onto a self-funded model – one where tuition fees would not be subject to caps determined by the province of Quebec. The argument was that restricting tuition in the McGill MBA was costing the school as much as US$10,000 per student.

The move is credited with allowing the school to make a renewed drive to attract international students and faculty and to boost the McGill MBA program’s international outlook as a whole. In addition, MBA intake numbers were reduced by 40% to work on improving the experience of individual students.

Redesigned curriculum at George Washington University School of Business

Bajeux-Besnainou, meanwhile, may have impressed the McGill Desautels selection committee with the new undergraduate curriculum she established at George Washington University School of Business this year in her current role of associate dean for undergraduate programs. The redesigned bachelor’s degree in business administration is said to highlight the value of interdisciplinary study and requires that a minor be taken outside of the business school.

Bajeux-Besnainou began her academic teaching career in France at ESSEC Business School, in 1989, before moving across the Atlantic to join George Washington University School of Business in 1994, via a short stint at Université de Montréal in the fall of 1993. She will assume her new role at McGill Desautels at the start of next year, 2016. Operations management professor, Morty Yalovsky, has been serving as interim dean since Todd’s departure from the role. Yalovsky’s own history with McGill dates all the way back to the 1960s when he was first a student of mathematics at the university.

  • Interested in applying to the McGill MBA? Find out what’s required in’s interview with the school’s associate director of MBA admissions, Antoinette Molino.

This article was originally published in May 2015 . It was last updated in December 2019

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Tim is a writer with a background in consumer journalism and charity communications. He trained as a journalist in the UK and holds degrees in history (BA) and Latin American studies (MA).