Professor Hui Lin is the recipient of two DePaul Excellence in Teaching Awards. But her influence on student success extends far beyond the classroom.
Lin is director of the School of Accountancy & MIS, and she was recently named Deloitte Foundation Endowed Professor at DePaul University. Before these roles, Lin spent a good amount of time jet-setting for DePaul as the associate director of regional initiatives, China. For five years she helped recruit students from China and strengthened alumni engagement there. Lin is from China herself, growing up in the coastal city Dalian and moving to the U.S. in high school because her father was a visiting scientist at the University of Virginia.
This June, Lin concludes a three-year tenure as director of the Driehaus Center for International Business, where she managed the business college’s degree programs in Bahrain and paved the way for a new partnership that will bring more accounting students from India to DePaul in the next academic year.
Business Exchange asked Lin to talk about her experiences and what keeps her motivated as a multifaceted leader.
Why do you feel it’s important for students to have international experiences?
I’ve always been an advocate for global perspectives in business education and supporting our students, whether students going outbound or international students coming here. Drawing from my personal journey of being a young immigrant in this country and overcoming cultural and language barriers, I know what that’s like, so I want to support our international students and help them succeed.
The business environment continues to become more complex. At the same time, the world is getting smaller. Nowadays, it’s more likely that you will engage on a global level in your job, for instance with a colleague or client who is located in a different country. It’s become an essential skill in business to have the cultural sensitivity and the global business communication expertise to navigate that. I tell my students, you should always be open to other people’s viewpoints because then you’ll develop a more well-rounded view. That’s what international experiences can give you. They broaden your perspective.
Why is the Deloitte Foundation Endowed Professorship important for DePaul?
The establishment of this professorship is a validation of the quality and success of the accounting education we offer at DePaul. It demonstrates the strong alumni connections we have at Deloitte and their commitment to help our faculty and students succeed. I am honored to hold this prestigious title to represent DePaul at national conferences and events. The professorship also strengthens our relationship with Deloitte, which has provided long-term funding for academic and professional advancement of our students and faculty.
What are some of your priorities as director of the School of Accountancy & MIS?
Given the current shortage of accounting professionals and certified public accountants, my priority is to attract more students to major in accounting, provide up-to-date, high-quality curriculum to prepare them for career success, and contribute to the diverse workforce development in our profession. Collaborating with the Deloitte Foundation Accounting Scholars Program to create pathways for more students has been one successful milestone in the pursuit of these goals.
How can alumni engagement support these priorities?
When alumni stay connected — donating, attending events, mentoring our students, giving time to classroom visits — they can help our students get employed and elevate DePaul’s profile as ambassadors. It’s a two-way street. We want alumni support, but it is equally important for us to provide something back.
What we are providing alumni is a sense of community and the opportunity to broaden their networks. I believe education should not stop when you receive your degree. It should be a continuous experience. Staying engaged with the college can enhance our alumni’s knowledge and career opportunities.
What keeps you motivated in your work?
I have always enjoyed learning and helping others learn. That’s how I see my job, whether in the classroom or in an administrative role. To quote an ancient Chinese proverb, “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” It gives me so much joy to do what I love and love what I do. I wholeheartedly believe in DePaul’s mission and the power of education, and that is what motivates me every day to do my best.