The Craig School of Business at Fresno State
Through the generosity of a former student, the Craig School of Business has become a shining example of giving back to an institution that encourages philanthropy.
Since its start in 1928, Fresno State's Craig School of Business has built itself into one of the top university business programs in the country.
And the school's namesake – Sid Craig – helped propel its academic advancement with a historic pledge in 1992 to boost the school's plans and ambitions.
Today, it's easy to understand why the school has earned its impressive standing. Talented faculty and administration provide leadership through a wide range of high-caliber courses and programs bolstered by technology and opportunities for real world experience. Students are prepared for careers in the central San Joaquin Valley and around the globe.
The acclaimed business school actually started as the Department of Commerce at the then-Fresno State Teachers College, 17 years after Fresno State was established.
As the business school grew, it expanded and strengthened its aim and purpose. By 1959, the school was fully accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International, and a student could earn a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration. In fact, it was the third accredited business program in California, after the University of California, Berkeley and UCLA. In 1974, the school's Master of Business Administration also earned full accreditation.
Through the mid- to late 1900s, Fresno State's School of Business and Administrative Sciences forged solid ties and partnerships with corporations and entrepreneurs to widen the scope of its curriculum, programs, internships and activities.
In 1992, Sid Craig – who had transferred to the school in 1952 to major in business and psychology – pledged $10 million, one of the largest commitments ever made to a Fresno State program.
Craig and his wife, Jenny, co-founded the famous Jenny Craig weight management company, a multi-million dollar enterprise. The Craigs made the pledge to support the business school's endeavors and projects. The school was renamed the Craig School of Business in recognition of the donation. It was the first business school in the California State University system to receive a naming endowment.
Endowments of all kinds also help support the school's endowed chairs, faculty research and the many scholarships offered by the school. In addition to the prestigious Craig Scholars and the Fresno Merchants Scholarships, more than 100 others are available.
The Craig School of Business continues to grow and earn recognition. For example, The Princeton Review named the school one of the top business schools in the nation. Entrepreneur Magazine rated the school's entrepreneurship program as one of 12 best undergraduate programs in the country. The award-winning internship program gives students an array of opportunities for practical, work place experience while in school.
Students can earn degrees in numerous areas, such as accountancy, entrepreneurship, human resource management, computer information systems and international business. They also have opportunities to study abroad. To complement their academic experience, students have access to a state-of-the-art computer lab and other specialized rooms.
The Craig School of Business also is committed to serving the community at large by extending professional development to individuals as well as private and public organizations. For example, its University Business Center offers programs and expertise to help businesses create jobs and increase economic development.
For all its achievements, the Craig School of Business continues to push forward and seek new, innovative methods to educate students and to contribute to the region's economic growth. It is fully engaged to meet the challenges of the 21st century.