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Saturday, October 1, 2022

Business-School Dean Resigns Amid Allegations He Lied About His Degrees

After simply two years on the job, Mario Enzler has resigned because the business-school dean on the College of St. Thomas, in Houston. His resignation, efficient final Friday however introduced on Tuesday, adopted allegations that he had falsified his academic credentials, together with a Ph.D. from a music conservatory in Italy that doesn’t provide Ph.D.s and a bachelor’s diploma from an Italian highschool.

Enzler is an Italian-born former Swiss Guard who personally knew Pope John Paul II and Mom Teresa, in line with his privately revealed ebook on the pope. He held no enterprise diploma and had revealed no scholarly work within the area when he took workplace as dean of the Cameron College of Enterprise, in June 2020. From the very starting, school members suspected one thing wasn’t proper.

John E. Simms, an affiliate professor of accounting, stated he had change into suspicious when, in a gathering with the enterprise faculty’s school, Enzler indicated he didn’t know what the Affiliation to Advance Collegiate Faculties of Enterprise — the accrediting company for the self-discipline — was.

Simms, who was liable for amassing accreditation documentation from business-school school members, stated that, for the 2 years that Enzler was dean, he by no means submitted the required paperwork from programs he taught, together with syllabi, grades, and assurance-of-learning paperwork. And each time Simms requested Enzler for the lacking supplies, Enzler would say, “Everyone seems to be studying, everyone seems to be sensible. Don’t fear about it, I’ll care for it.”

As accreditation deadlines approached, Simms felt pressured to get the paperwork collectively. He stated that many school members within the enterprise faculty had labored laborious to realize and keep accreditation, and he apprehensive that their work could be jeopardized. “Accreditation is all about documentation, however it’s additionally about credibility,” he stated. “I couldn’t simply sit right here and watch over a decade of labor go down the tube.”

Together with different school members, together with one who spoke Italian, Simms determined to research Enzler. They known as the establishments in Italy that had allegedly awarded Enzler’s levels. One is a music conservatory that doesn’t provide doctoral-level applications, Simms stated, an assertion confirmed by its web site. The opposite is a highschool that provides vocational certificates, he stated. That led Simms to suppose that Enzler might’ve falsified his CV, which Simms stated is a violation of the Texas penal code.

A spokesperson for the college declined to reply particular questions on Enzler’s time at St. Thomas.

Enzler didn’t reply to a request for touch upon Wednesday.

Simms additionally stated Enzler’s hiring had been uncommon. The enterprise faculty had employed Storbeck/Pimentel & Associates, a nationwide search agency now known as SP&A Govt Search, to recruit candidates. Alberto Pimentel, who led the recruitment efforts, informed The Chronicle that Enzler “was not a candidate that both responded to our advertisements or that was recruited by us.”

Pimentel stated he had requested the college whether or not his agency ought to conduct reference and background checks on Enzler, however was informed no. His agency normally vets candidates’ academic background, however on this case it was not allowed to take action.

Ties to the Catholic Church

Enzler didn’t have a terminal diploma in enterprise, as required by the job posting. Moderately, his CV, reviewed by The Chronicle, says he has a doctorate in music and a bachelor’s in classics.

Simms filed an inner grievance searching for the termination of each Enzler and Christopher P. Evans, vp for tutorial affairs, who Simms stated had employed Enzler. Later, the grievance was suspended, and the college began an administrative investigation, however in line with Simms, it didn’t go anyplace.

In an e-mail to The Chronicle, Evans said that “a search committee consisting of tenured school and friends reviewed functions and glad their cost by sending an inventory of suggestions that listed Mario Enzler and one other doable candidate to be employed for the dean place.” Evans declined to answer different questions.

A member of the search committee, nevertheless, remembers issues in a different way. John Leavins, an accounting professor, informed The Chronicle that it was not the committee’s accountability to advocate a candidate for the put up. Moderately, its members analyzed every candidate’s strengths and weaknesses. Leavins stated Enzler’s energy was his sturdy relationship to the Roman Catholic Church, which match the mission of the college, whereas his weak point was his lack of a conventional educational background.

Ramon Fernandez, an assistant professor of accounting, stated he doesn’t perceive why Enzler was employed, given his lack of required {qualifications}.

Beginning this previous April, school members, together with Simms and Fernandez, despatched letters to the college itemizing all the explanations Enzler shouldn’t be the enterprise dean. Fernandez stated that Evans had by no means met with school members to debate the difficulty. “I’d have thought that he would meet with school to know what was occurring,” Fernandez stated, “however he didn’t. He ignored us all summer time.”

Fernandez stated that Enzler later admitted that he lacked a doctorate, however the college continued to make use of “Dr.” earlier than his title and “Ph.D.” after it. In Might, throughout the faculty’s graduation ceremony, Enzler was launched as “Dr.” and graduates acquired honors certificates signed by Enzler, with “Ph.D.” printed alongside his title.

Fernandez is anxious in regards to the enterprise faculty’s future. “The following search that we do must be performed correctly and comply with coverage,” Fernandez stated.

The enterprise faculty has appointed three school members to a brand new management council to behave as interim deans till a brand new dean is employed.

“The essential factor for us now,” the spokesperson for the college stated, “is to give attention to the way forward for the Cameron College of Enterprise.”

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