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Business school dean resigns amid allegations he lied about his degree

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Mario Ensler resigned after just two years as dean of the business school at the University of St. Thomas in Houston. His resignation, which took effect last Friday, was announced on Tuesday. From an Italian conservatory without a doctorate and bachelor’s degree from an Italian high school.

Enzler was an Italian-born former Swiss Guard who knew Pope John Paul II and Mother Teresa personally, according to his privately published book on the Pope. When he took over as director, he did not have a degree in business and had not published any academic papers in the field.

John E. Sims, associate professor of accounting, was at a meeting with business school faculty at the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business – the accrediting body for the field.

Sims, who was responsible for collecting accreditation documents from business school faculty and staff, said that during Enzler’s two years as dean, he never submitted the required documents from the courses he taught, including syllabuses, grades, and guarantees of learning. Said it never was.Documentation. And whenever Sims asked Enzler about the missing material, Enzler said, Don’t worry, I’ll clean it up. “

As the certification deadline approached, Sims felt the pressure to get the paperwork together. He said many faculty members at business schools had worked hard to obtain and maintain accreditation, and was concerned that their jobs would be jeopardized. It’s a thing, but it’s also about reliability,” he said. “I couldn’t just sit here and watch 10+ years of work go down the pipe.”

Sims, along with other faculty members, including one who speaks Italian, decides to investigate Enzler. They called the Italian institution that allegedly awarded Enzler’s degree. One of them, he said, is a music school that does not offer a doctoral program. Another is a high school that offers vocational certificates, he said. This led Sims to think that Enzler may have falsified his resume. Sims said this violates Texas Penal Code.

A university spokesperson declined to answer specific questions about Enzler’s time at St. Thomas.

Enzler did not respond to a request for comment on Wednesday.

Sims also said Enzler’s hiring was unusual. The business school was recruiting candidates, he hired Storbeck/Pimentel & Associates, a national search firm now called SP&A Executive Search. Alberto Pimentel, who led the recruitment effort, said: Chronicle Enzler “wasn’t a candidate who responded to our ad or who we hired.”

Pimentel said he asked the university if his firm should conduct a background check on Mr. Enzler, but was told no. His company usually scrutinizes a candidate’s educational background, but in this case he was not allowed to do so.

Connection with the Catholic Church

Enzler did not have the final business degree required by the job posting. Rather, his resume, Chroniclesays he has a doctorate in music and a bachelor’s degree in classical music.

Sims filed an internal complaint seeking the dismissal of Enzler and Vice President for Academic Affairs Christopher P. Evans. The complaint was then put on hold and the university launched an administrative investigation, but according to Sims, it went nowhere.

by email to ChronicleEvans said, “A search committee composed of tenured faculty and colleagues reviewed the application and created a recommended list listing Mario Enzler and another candidate who might be hired for the position of dean.” I satisfied their responsibilities by sending them.” Evans declined to answer other questions.

But search committee members remember things differently. Accounting professor John Levins said: Chronicle It was not the committee’s responsibility to recommend candidates for the office. Rather, its members analyzed each candidate’s strengths and weaknesses. Levins said Enzler’s strength was his strong ties to the Catholic Church in Rome, which matched the university’s mission, and his weakness was his lack of a traditional academic background.

Ramon Fernandez, an assistant professor of accounting, said he couldn’t understand why Enzler was hired given that he didn’t have the necessary qualifications.

Starting in April of this year, faculty members, including Sims and Fernandez, sent a letter to the university listing all the reasons why Enzler shouldn’t be dean of business. Fernandez said Evans never met with faculty to discuss the issue. “You would have expected him to meet with the faculty to understand what was going on,” Fernandez said. He ignored us all summer. “

Fernandez said Enzler later admitted he didn’t have a doctorate, but the university continued to use “doctoral”. After that before his name and “Ph.D.”. In May, at the school’s entrance ceremony, Enzler was introduced as “Doctor”. Graduates received a “Ph.D.” honors certificate signed by Enzler. printed with his name.

Fernandez is concerned about the future of business schools. “The next search we do has to be done properly and according to policy,” Fernandez said.

The business school has appointed three faculty members to its new Leadership Council as interim deans until a new dean is hired.

“Right now, it’s important for us to focus on the future of the Cameron School of Business,” said a spokesperson for the university.