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Oxholm Appointed Inaugural Dean of the Drexel Sacramento Center for Graduate Studies

January 14, 2009

Oxholm Appointed Inaugural Dean of the Drexel Sacramento Center for Graduate Studies
Carl “Tobey” Oxholm III has been appointed inaugural dean and chief executive officer of Drexel University’s new Center for Graduate Studies in Sacramento, Calif., University President Dr. Constantine Papadakis announced today. The Graduate Center opened on January 5, 2009, and offers master’s degree programs for working professionals. Oxholm has led development of the Center in his role as executive vice president of Drexel.

“Our graduate offerings in Sacramento continue Drexel’s 118-year tradition at the cutting-edge of higher education,” said Papadakis, “and I know that Tobey is the right leader to make the Graduate Center a success and a national model. Having our university’s second-highest officer move from Philadelphia to Sacramento is a clear declaration of our commitment to excellence, and to joining the region’s leadership in working to build a first-tier economy.”

The Center for Graduate Studies will focus on fields that will be at the heart of the Sacramento region’s economy for the coming decades: business, information systems, engineering, health care, education and human resources. Designed with business succession planning in mind, each program will emphasize the development of leadership skills, written and oral communication, strategic planning, working in and leading groups and risk and decision analysis. Students at the Graduate Center will also collaborate with master’s students on Drexel’s Philadelphia campus, learning how to work in and manage “virtual teams” across three time zones.

“Our Graduate Center is being developed from the ground up to meet the specific needs of the greater Sacramento region,” said Richard Greenawalt, chairman of Drexel’s Board of Trustees. “Tobey’s energy and ability in building relationships with the business and nonprofit communities, demonstrated over three decades here in Philadelphia, will remain instrumental in that process. His leadership and vision will help ensure that the Graduate Center becomes an integral and indispensable part of the futures of both Drexel University and the Sacramento region.”

Drexel is now teaching four degree programs in Sacramento and will offer five more in September 2009, in a 20,000-square-foot facility on Capitol Mall that includes $1 million in teaching and presentation technology.

“We have the best available technologies, integrated in creative and unique ways that make them easily usable by presenters and accessible to students both on-site and off-site,” said Oxholm. “This will allow us to deliver the blend of in-person and on-line education that best serves today’s working adults. We are confident that our proven, dynamic approach to learning will more effectively position them for leadership and success.”

Since joining the University in 2001 as General Counsel, Oxholm has played a key role in Drexel’s major innovations including Drexel e-Learning Inc., the University’s online learning subsidiary; the acquisition of MCP Hahnemann University, now Drexel University College of Medicine; the development of a nationally respected health care dispute mediation program and captive professional liability insurance company, Schuylkill Crossing Reciprocal Risk Retention Group; and the creation of the Earle Mack School of Law, which achieved provisional accreditation from the American Bar Association earlier this year in the shortest possible time.

Prior to joining Drexel, Oxholm was a practicing attorney in Philadelphia for 22 years, at major firms and in the City’s Law Department as Chief Deputy City Solicitor. He has been a leader in community service among the region’s lawyers, helping to create three pro bono projects that have become national models—the Philadelphia Volunteers for the Indigent Program, the Homeless Advocacy Project and the Consumer Bankruptcy Assistance Project—and winning many awards, including the American Bar Association’s “Pro Bono Publico” Award for exemplary public service.

A 1979 cum laude graduate of Harvard University Law School, Oxholm received his master’s degree in public policy at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. He graduated summa cum laude from Amherst College in 1975 with a bachelor of arts degree, Phi Beta Kappa.

Oxholm will continue to have a senior leadership role in Philadelphia as a senior vice president, including serving on the president’s cabinet, chairing the executive council and leading Drexel’s sustainability movement, Drexel Green.


News Media Contact: Niki Gianakaris, Assistant Director, Drexel News Bureau 215-895-6741, 215-778-7752 (cell) or

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