Audhesh Paswan was named dean of University of North Texas’ College of Applied and Collaborative Studies, previously known as New College, on March 1.

Paswan earned his Ph.D. from the University of Mississippi. He joined the University of North Texas as a professor of marketing in 1999 after a career in the advertising industry and working as a brand manager in the pharmaceutical industry.

Before moving to his current role, Paswan had served as the associate dean of academic affairs in UNT’s G. Brint Ryan College of Business since 2015.

The university opened its first Frisco campus building, called Frisco Landing, in January.

Paswan sat down with Community Impact to discuss the accomplishments of UNT at Frisco during its first year and his hopes going into its second year. Answers have been edited for length and clarity.

What accomplishment would you highlight since you started at Frisco Landing?

When I started, my first question to [Provost Michael McPherson] was, “How long do we want to remain New College?” I said I would like to talk to the faculty and let the faculty decide what name they want. That’s how the College of Applied and Collaborative Studies came about. Now we have a name that reflects what we do.

Is there an advantage to having a UNT campus be in close proximity to the industry in North Texas?

Instead of waiting for your customers to come to you, you go to your customers. Most businesses after a period of time reach a saturation point in the marketplace, so they have to find new markets. Instead of waiting for the market to come to you, you go to the market with a value that the particular market wants.

How will UNT at Frisco create innovative programs to meet the needs of the North Texas workforce?

Think about a lot of people who start college after they finish high school, and somewhere down the line, life happens. They start working and don’t know if [they] can go back and finish [their] degree. More often than not, if you tried to go back to college after working, you will have to do a lot of prerequisites. Most people say, “I don’t have time; I can’t give up my work.”

[UNT at Frisco] allows us to remove those separations from life and education and blend them together to take their work experience and life experiences and treat them as a credit for the degree program.

What are your hopes for Frisco Landing going into its second year?

Increasing the bottom line, no two ways about it. I would like our student population to move from 3,000 to somewhere around 5,000 in two years’ time. I would like the local business and community to see [Frisco Landing] as a place where they can come in, interact with students, talk to faculty and create something they hadn’t thought about before. I would like to have more presence of community and business at UNT Frisco’s campuses.