Academic Quality photo

Because our students are central to everything we do, the College of Business, Communication and Leadership delivers relevant, responsive and transformational programs. Our alumni, community partners, and faculty collaborate to ensure that our students receive a world class education.

College of Business, Communication and Leadership

Middle States Commission on Higher Education | Accreditation | Logo | 2021
Middle States Accreditation
Alvernia University is an accredited institution and a member of the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE). Alvernia's accreditation status is Accreditation Reaffirmed.
Department of Physical Therapy | 2020
Carnegie Classification
Alvernia earned the Professional/Doctoral University designation by the Carnegie Commission on Higher Education, reflecting the university’s strategic direction and continued progression toward becoming a regional comprehensive university.
Male graduate student at laptop
ASBSP Accreditation
Alvernia's Business Department is accredited by the Accreditation Council of Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP).
Honors students walk to a class in Francis Hall
Honors Program
The Honors Program assists students of outstanding intellectual promise and high motivation who are interested in future graduate or professional study and/or seeking increasing challenge at the undergraduate level.



Leadership Dissertations, Capstones, Research, Awards

Esther Abigail (Abby) Wells was awarded the United States-Israel Educational Foundation (USIEF) Fulbright Postdoctoral Research Fellowship for the 2019-21 academic years. The award enables her to conduct her research - “What should we think about making aliyah? Racial minoritization and Ethiopian absorption since the modern period” - at the University of Haifa. The Fulbright Program aims to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries, and it is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government. § Erik R. Saar (Ph.D. graduate, veteran, book author): The following is directly from Wikipedia “A United States Army enlisted intelligence soldier, Sergeant Erik R. Saar was the co-author of the 2005 Inside the Wire : A Military Intelligence Soldier's Eyewitness Account of Life at Guantanamo, together with Viveca Novak. He had worked as an Arabic translator for six months from December 2002 to June 2003 at the Guantanamo Bay detainment camps which he later described as a "dysfunctional facility where prisoner abuse was all but inevitable" He described faked interrogations, sexual interrogation techniques and physical assaults of prisoners.”

2015 International Leadership Association’s Graduate Student Case Competition Winners

Ph.D. students Patti Brenner, Tracey Brown ’15, and Brian Petersen won the prestigious Student Case Competition Award (Graduate Division) at the International Leadership Association 17th Annual Global Conference.

The case competition topic was the recent corruption scandal involving International Federation of Association Football (FIFA). Teams were responsible for analyzing FIFA as an organization including its purpose, values, and leadership. Responses were to demonstrate a solid grasp of the ethical issues involved as well as an advanced understanding of leadership theory and practice, and a realistic mechanism for improving accountability and transparency within the organization.

Through a rigorous selection process, selected teams proceeded on to subsequent rounds of the competition including a written paper, a poster showcase, and an oral presentation and defense of their recommendations. The winning team received a complementary annual membership and a $1,000 cash prize.

About the ILA:

The International Leadership Association is the largest global community dedicated to leadership theory and practice. It brings together professionals from every sector, discipline, and profession across the globe to produce rigorous research, cultivate a deeper understanding of the world, and generate new insights into how to exercise effective leadership.

  • Nine members of the Alvernia University Ph.D. community were selected to present at the International Leadership Association's 17th annual global conference, “Leading Across Boarders and Generations.” The conference was held on October 14 – 17, 2015 in Barcelona, Spain.
  • Fourteen members of Alvernia University’s Ph.D. community were selected to present at the International Leadership Association’s (ILA) 18th Annual Global Conference, “The Dynamics of Inclusive Leadership,” held on November 2-5, 2016 in Atlanta Georgia.
  • Nine members of Alvernia University’s Ph.D. community were selected to present at the International Leadership Association’s (ILA) 19th Annual Global Conference, “Leadership in Turbulent Times,” held on October 12-15, 2017 in Brussels, Belgium.
  • Fourteen members of the Alvernia University Ph.D. community were selected to present at the International Leadership Association’s (ILA) 20th International Leadership Association Conference, “Authentic Leadership for Progress, Peace & Prosperity” in West Palm Beach in October 2018.
  • Eight members of the Alvernia University Ph.D. community were selected to present at the International Leadership Association’s (ILA) 21st International Leadership Association Conference, “Leadership: Courage Required” in Ottowa, Canada in October, 2019.

Relevant topics, and topics related to our mission and core values, that our students have researched:

  • Servant leadership
  • Community engagement in higher education
  • Leadership education
  • Leadership and spirituality
  • Emergent leadership styles of fortune 500 executives
  • Sustainability
  • Authentic leadership
  • Culture and Leadership
  • Sustainable organizations
  • Leadership competencies
  • Leadership skills
  • Nature-Centered leadership
  • Quality Improvement
  • Job Satisfaction
  • Multicultural leadership
  • Executive leadership
  • Ethical leadership
  • Ethical decision-making
  • Narrative Leadership
  • Emotional Intelligence
  • Technology and leadership
  • Diversity Leadership
  • Military Leaders and motivation
  • Adaptive leadership
  • Mentorship
  • Self-Care
  • Inclusivity and Social Justice
  • Global leadership
  • Gender and leadership
  • Moral leadership
  • Shared leadership
  • Transformational leadership
  • Engagement


  • Elliker, J. (2020). Finding Greenleaf in a hotel dedicated to a city (ProQuest 27744537).
  • Dunst, J. K. (2020). Articulation of community engagement in higher education: A comparative study of Carnegie classified schools (ProQuest 27829518).
  • Wooten, Z. C. (2022). The Aim of Leadership Education: Spirituality and the Writings of Parker J. Palmer (ProQuest 2661109986)
  • Legutko, B. (2016). An exploration of the emergent leadership styles of fortune 500 executives as communicated in annual report letters to their shareholders (ProQuest 10242010)
  • Sean F. Griech, Ph.D. in Community Leadership; Chair: Spencer S. Stober, Ed.D. Title: The Role Of Ethical Leadership In The Clinical Decision Making Of Physical Therapists In Caring For Patients Of Differing Socioeconomic Status And Race With Low Back Pain In The United States