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Strategic Plan

  • Color photograph looking up at the crown of Fertitta Hall on the campus of USC on a sunny day.

    USC Marshall School of Business Strategic Plan



To empower students and business leaders with the knowledge and skills to incubate transformational ideas and to translate them into world-changing impact.


To become the world’s leading comprehensive business school combining an integrated suite of the highest quality academic programs at all levels with cutting-edge pedagogy and high-impact research and thought leadership.

USC's Unifying Values

We act with integrity in the pursuit of excellence.
We embrace diversity, equity and inclusion, and promote wellbeing.
We engage in open communication and are accountable for living our values.

Educational Pillars

Tech Fluency: be fluent in the languages of new technology, data science and analytics needed to drive business innovation.
Human Leadership: develop the skills needed to take on the societal and ethical challenges of business.
Real-World Learning: apply in the real world the theories and tools learned in the classroom.



- Develop connections among Marshall’s programs and those of other USC schools to give all students the opportunity to earn multiple credentials.
- Align Marshall initiatives with USC Moonshots that take advantage of our location in Southern California.
- Ensure that we attract and retain the most talented and diverse faculty, students and staff.
- Build a unified and inclusive community among faculty, staff, students, alumni, friends and business partners.


- We are the country’s largest top-20 business school, attracting talented students from across the globe to our extensive suite of undergraduate, specialized masters, MBA and PhD programs.
- Our faculty are among the most accomplished scholars in the world and span all the major business disciplines.
- Our talented and dedicated staff are committed to excellence and continuous improvement in support of the school’s mission.
- We are located at the center of both USC, with excellence at scale across a very broad range of disciplines, and Los Angeles, one of the world’s most dynamic and diverse cities.
- Our global alumni community numbering nearly 100,000 is a cornerstone of the unique Trojan Network.



Further develop undergraduate joint degrees with other schools at USC: Continue to explore the desirability of joint undergraduate programs with other USC schools that leverage the combination of business skills with diverse domain expertise and that allow students to graduate in four years with credentials in both business and a cognate discipline.

Entrench undergraduate-MS dual degree opportunities: Continue to streamline USC’s Progressive Degree Program pathways allowing undergraduates also to earn a specialized master’s degree in business.

Explore the creation of MBA-MS dual degrees: Assess the desirability and feasibility of helping MBA students also to obtain specialized master’s degrees without increasing time to completion.

Enhance interoperability among MBAs for working professionals: Explore ways to increase curricular choice and delivery flexibility among our three MBA programs catering to working professionals—EMBA, MBA.PM and OMBA—while maintaining the cohort building and networking opportunities at the core of the MBA experience.

Investigate online MS degrees for working professionals: Explore opportunities to create online master’s degrees for working professionals not interested in residential programs, building on the success of its online MBA and online supply chain master’s degree program.

Explore international dual degrees: Explore international partnerships that would give students pursuing degrees in other countries the opportunity to articulate them with Marshall specialized master’s degrees.

USC "Moonshots"

President Folt has identified several transformative “moonshots” based on interdisciplinary collaboration among USC’s 23 schools. Marshall has the opportunity to contribute to and benefit from several of these moonshots.

Frontiers of Computing: Marshall is well positioned to be an active participant in at least four facets of this moonshot: artificial intelligence, digital assets/web3/blockchain, the ethics of technology, and regulation of technology.

Sustainable Urban Futures: Marshall is poised to play major roles in this moonshot with education, research and thought leadership on the future of real estate, inclusive and sustainable growth, the business of sustainability and the transition to renewable energy.

USC Sports: As the academic analogy to USC’s leadership in collegiate athletics, Marshall has partnered with Annenberg to begin developing university-wide academic programming on sports comprising the business of sports, media, entertainment and sports, sports performance and health and sports in society.


Increase the size of the faculty: Because Marshall’s faculty has not kept pace with student growth over the past decade, the school is working to increase the size of the full-time faculty by roughly 10% to 250, with a 60/40 mix between tenured/tenure-track and RTPC faculty.

Support research excellence and thought leadership: The School will provide sufficient research support for faculty to maintain if not improve our top-10 global position in research, focusing on the most pressing and important issues facing the business world and society.

Increase the number of chaired professors: Because Marshall is significantly “under-chaired” compared with its peers, the school will focus considerable fundraising efforts on increasing the number of not only research-based but also teaching-based chaired professors.

Achieve gender parity in new appointments: Even though Marshall is home to many outstanding women professors, the gender profile of the faculty is considerably less balanced than the student body. As an actionable step to reduce this imbalance, the school should strive to achieve gender parity in new appointments.

Increase racial and ethnic diversity among the faculty: Because Marshall’s student body is considerably more racially and ethnically diverse than its faculty, the school should pro-actively seek to increase the number of faculty who identify as Black, Lantinx/e, and/or Indigenous.


Achieve gender parity across the student body: As the first top business school to achieve gender parity in both its full time MBA and undergraduate programs, Marshall should now aspire to achieving gender parity throughout its entire student body.

Enhance and support racial, ethnic and socioeconomic diversity among students: While Marshall has significantly increased the diversity of its student body in recent years, the school must now seek to sustain this momentum amid legal, political and social challenges.

Increase scholarship support: To deliver on Marshall’s core commitment to recruit the most talented students irrespective of their financial means, the school should continue to raise more gifts to support scholarships for students at all levels.

Focus on career pathways for all students: Because Marshall is committed to launching and accelerate the careers of our students, the school should consider coordinating its careers teams to create a “one stop shop” for all our students and the myriad companies interested in recruiting them.

Emphasize our distinctive approach to human leadership: Because being a successful leader today requires more self-understanding and human skills than in prior generations, Marshall should consider a flagship initiative focused on inclusive and purpose-driven leadership.

Enhance real-world learning opportunities: Application of classroom concepts prepares Marshall students to excel in the workplace. To maximize opportunities for students, Marshall will create incremental student startups/incubator, international project-based experiences and student-managed investment funds.

Reimagine global programs: As a pioneer and world leader in providing students with immersive international educational experiences, Marshall has the opportunity to re-define international education through more project-based programs that are better integrated with the on-campus curriculum.


Right-size staffing levels: The school has begun a multi-year process for reviewing staffing needs and levels to identify both areas where the school needs to increase staff numbers and opportunities for increasing the efficiency of our operations.

Staff Diversity: The school is committed to continually reviewing the racial, ethnic and gender diversity of staff and also the culture and climate of the school to increase inclusion and belonging among staff as well as ensuring equity in employment, retention and career progression.

Advance the impact of the Staff Council: To represent and amplify the staff voice in decision-making and communication, the inaugural Staff Council was elected in 2022 and its Chair was appointed to the Dean’s Cabinet. In the coming years, the school will consider how best to involve the Staff Council in its shared governance.

Increase professional development opportunities for staff: Following the successes of the inaugural staff and faculty development conference, the school will develop a diverse portfolio of professional development opportunities for all staff.

Increase the efficacy of the Operational Cabinet: The Operational Cabinet, with its chair sitting on the Dean’s Cabinet, was created in 2023 to better engage senior staff in school wide decision making and implementation, to counteract siloing and to streamline business processes. The school will work with the Ops Cabinet to ensure its centrality to the implementation of strategic priorities.

Fine tune hybrid work options: Following the lessons learned during the COVID pandemic, Marshall followed USC guidelines to develop remote work and shared office arrangements to support well-being and reduce single-use office spaces. In the coming years, the school will continue to monitor and fine tune these arrangements to ensure an optimal balance of presence, service and well-being.


Enable and cultivate an inclusive educational environment and workplace community: The school is committed to supporting a community that attracts, retains, and develops diverse students, staff, and faculty through an inclusive culture founded in respect and collaboration.

The Trojan Network

The Trojan Network is like no other community in the world, embracing alumni, students, faculty, staff, parents and friends to collectively lift up the university and each other. The opportunity for Marshall is to harness the power of this unrivaled social community to further the professional opportunities of all our stakeholders.

Empower transformational philanthropy: In order to reduce its dependence on tuition and to support the growth of new initiatives, the school is committed to securing transformational leadership gifts to support the school’s highest priorities in terms of teaching and research and the facilities needed to support them.

Meet alumni needs: With 95,000+ alumni and countless supporters and friends, the Marshall community reaches every industry and every corner of the globe. The school will focus on enhancing lifelong learning, career advancement, skills building and networking throughout our community from Los Angeles to the world.