Board of Commissioners

ATHEA is the membership-based association, the Association for Transnational Higher Education Accreditation. Within ATHEA, the ATHEA Board of Commissioners conducts the accreditation-related activities for the association.

The Board of Commissioners is the independent accreditation decision-making body of ATHEA and is elected by the organisation’s membership in accordance with the ATHEA Charter. The Commissioners review and evaluate requests for accreditation, and determine the accreditation status of all institution members. The commissioners are responsible for maintaining and updating the Accreditation Process Manual and associated documents.

The Board of Commissioners was formed in October, 2015. The Board of Commissioners is the independent accreditation decision-making body of ATHEA and is elected by the organization’s membership in accordance with the ATHEA bylaws. The Commissioners review and evaluate requests for accreditation, and determine the accreditation status of all ATHEA institution members. The commissioners are responsible for maintaining and updating the THEA Accreditation Process Manual and associated documents.

The processes, procedures, and specifics of ATHEA Accreditation fall within the purview of the ATHEA Board of Commissioners, which organisationally is part of ATHEA with independence relative to matters of accreditation. The Board of Commissioners is organisationally subordinate to the ATHEA Board of Directors, but there is a degree of separation relative to Commission actions relative to accreditation. Such separation ensures unbiased accreditation actions. The shortened versions would be the ATHEA Board of Commissioners when referring to the organisational entity, and ATHEA Commissioners when referring to the persons on the Commission.

An Institutional Member is granted ATHEA Candidacy by the ATHEA Board of Commissioners and subsequently obtains ATHEA-Candidate. Thus, the ATHEA Institutional Member has obtained ATHEA-Candidate status. An ATHEA-Candidate is awarded ATHEA by the ATHEA Board of Commissioners and subsequently becomes ATHEA-Accredited. Thus, the ATHEA Institutional Member has obtained ATHEA-Accredited Status. The terms grants/granted and awards/awarded are specific relative to candidacy and accredited.

ATHEA’s Charter regulates the governance, structure, and operations of the organisation.

The governance of ATHEA is described in its bylaws. The ATHEA Board of Directors focuses on the association’s membership. The ATHEA Board of Commissioners is the independent accreditation decision-making body of ATHEA and is elected by the organisation’s membership in accordance with the ATHEA bylaws.

The ATHEA Board of Commissioners was initially appointed at ATHEA’s Membership Meeting in October 2015. The Board of Commissioners reviews and evaluates requests for accreditation, and determines the accreditation status of all ATHEA institution members. The ATHEA Board of Commissioners is responsible for maintaining and updating the ATHEA Accreditation Process Manual and associated documents.

ATHEA - Oliver Olsen

Chair

Oliver Olson
Maastricht School of Management (MSM)

Oliver Olsen is the Director of Global Education Programs and Senior Lecturer of Marketing at MSM. Oliver was one of the founders of the Maastricht School of Management Romania and was that school’s first Dean and Academic Director. He has served as the Academic Director for the creation of the International Academy of Retail Banking, a division of the London based Lafferty Group. He has previously had various academic and administrative roles at CEU Business School in Budapest. Prior to joining CEU Business School, Oliver Olson started his professional career as an Export Product Manager for Salamander Shoes in Stuttgart, Germany in the 90’s. He then moved to the USA where he worked in banking for almost a decade, including stints as Assistant Vice President at Bank of America, Senior Manager for a major credit card company and the CIO of a community bank in Dallas, Texas. Oliver earned his Undergraduate Degree in International Business and German from California State University, Fullerton and his MBA from the University of Texas, Dallas. Oliver is fluent in German and can hold his own in Swedish and Romanian. He is working on his Dutch.

ATHEA - Matthew Andrews

Co-Chair

Matthew Andrews
International School of Management (ISM)

Matthew Andrews holds a PhD in international management and publishes research on organizational development and learning in technology companies. He has been working in higher education in France since 1997 as a teacher, administrator, consultant, and accreditation peer reviewer. Before his current position as Director of Academic Affairs at ISM, Matthew Andrews was the Dean of Bachelor and Master of Business Administration programs at the Institut Supérieur de Gestion in Paris France.

ATHEA - Donna Roberts

Member

Donna Roberts
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Europe

Dr. Donna Roberts is an American writer and university professor residing in Europe. She has been involved in education overseas since 1990, working for various universities. Donna has worked for Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University since 2002 as a faculty member, a Center Faculty Chair, Regional Associate Dean and Dean of Academic Affairs for the International Region of Embry-Riddle’s Worldwide campus. Currently, she is an Associate Professor and the Department Chair for Social Sciences & Economics in the College of Arts & Sciences as well as the Chair for Undergraduate Research. Donna holds a PhD in Psychology, a Master of Business Administration, a Master of Human Relations, and Master of Education in Counseling.

ATHEA - Jan Vanherck

Member

Jan Vanherck
United International Business Schools (UIBS)

Jan Vanherck holds a degree in civil engineering. He has been working in management positions for both multinational and Belgian companies. He started teaching finance, economics and applied mathematics at United International Business Schools (UIBS) in 2010. Currently, he is the Dean of the institution. Apart from being a professor, Jan also runs several privately owned companies and offers consultancy services.

ATHEA - Nitesh Sughnani

External Member

Nitesh Sughnani

Nitesh Sughnani is the Senior Quality Assurance Manager for the University Quality Assurance International Board at the Higher Education Department for the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) in Dubai, UAE. Nitesh Sughnani is currently pursuing a DBA – Higher Education Management – at the University of Bath, UK, and has completed his MBA with Murdoch University. Nitesh, has been with the KHDA for over 7 years and is responsible for managing the quality assurance activities of UQAIB and works closely with the International Branch Campuses in Dubai for the purpose of their UQAIB reviews. The University Quality Assurance International Board (UQAIB) is a board of leading international higher education quality assurance experts established by the authority of KHDA. It has responsibility for reviewing HEP Branches using an Equivalency Validation Model and making recommendations to KHDA accordingly. UQAIB also validates the academic programmes of HEP Branches for the purpose of Program Registration. UQAIB is a member of INQAAHE and has several international partnerships with quality assurance agencies.

ATHEA - Manuel Kleijmeer

External Member

Manuel Kleijmeer

Manuel Kleijmeer has been involved in quality and higher education since early 2000. He gained his international experience in the employment of Business School Netherlands (BSN) South Africa, a Cape Town based business school. In 2007 he relocated to BSN in Holland where he ran the MBA development department until 2016. Currently he holds the position of Programme Manager at NOVI University of Applied Sciences, a private provider of higher ICT education, located in Utrecht, the Netherlands. In this capacity his chief responsibilities concern the overall quality assurance, legal affairs and educational innovation.

ATHEA homepage map of Europe

Board of Commissioners – May 2016
Front: Nitesh Sughnani, Matthew Andrews
Back: Manuel Kleijmer, Jan Vanherck, Robert Walton, Oliver Olsen