After five years as dean of the McDonough School of Business, George Daly will leave the post at the end of this academic year.

“I didn’t want to die in office,” Daly joked in an interview with THE HOYA. “When you make the level of change that I’ve had the privilege, with others, to make, there’s sort of a natural [moment to stop],” he added.

His tenure has seen the school expand significantly. With the completion of the Rafik B. Hariri Building and the founding of new executive MBA programs, Daly has recruited nearly 60 new faculty and staff members and created more than 300 new spots for graduate students.

“There’s been an enormous amount of change .” Daly said. “I think now [the school] is at a level where we’re really poised to take it to the next level.”

Daly also highlighted the less obvious moves he has made as dean, such as reworking how the school finds, promotes and pays faculty.

“It’s sort of like a relay race … the outcome of one dean is only fully known three or four years after that dean is no longer dean . ” he added. “I would be even prouder of the change that is likely to occur in the next five to 10 years here.”

Other faculty members echo his accomplishments.

“The number of students, faculty, staff – everything has grown,” said Reena Aggarwal, professor of business administration and finance and interim dean in the year before Daly’s arrival. “And there’s a lot more visibility to the school, partly with the new building. The kinds of speakers who are coming in here, and the types of events that are being held here have been pretty remarkable. Now we’re really starting to take advantage of our Washington location.”

Daly admits that his successor will face considerable challenges. “Globalization . increases sources of competition from all over the world, and that’s just as true among universities, and especially among business schools, throughout the world,” he said. “We’re trying to prepare the school for that.”

Aggarwal added that while the popularity – and revenues – of the MSB’s degree programs have grown rapidly, there is little potential for further expansion. “We still lag behind our peers in terms of finances,” she said, “and we have to think creatively about what these new sources of revenue are going to be.”

Daly came to Georgetown from New York University’s Stern School of Business, where he had served as dean for nine years before stepping down in 2002.

“I had had enough of that, and I went back to teaching, and frankly I found that that wasn’t exciting enough for me,” he said. “I took this job because I felt that if there was any school in the country that had the opportunity to really move up, it would be this particular school.”

And yes, he said, it did satisfy his desire for excitement.

“I feel that this school will have an imprint on it from what I have, with my colleagues, been able to do,” he said. “I would guess that most of my colleagues, including some who wouldn’t like the things that I did, would have to agree, `Boy, this is a different place.'”

After he leaves his office as dean next year, Daly plans to take a year-long sabbatical to travel and pursue his research into leadership in professional sports.

Following his sabbatical, Daly said he plans to return as a part-time professor in the Hariri building, with its students, classrooms and, occasionally, snakes.

“Well, we just found a black snake inside [the MSB Commons],” Daly said. “But the biggest regret is that I would’ve built it a little larger. We’re already at capacity.”

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