Jean Rosanvallon was elected to the Embry-Riddle Board of Trustees in June 2008. He is a member of the Finance committee.
In 1974, Jean Rosanvallon’s only proof of graduation was a certificate in the mail from the prestigious business school he attended in France. The fanfare of graduation day would come 32 years later when the now successful businessman and alumnus of Hautes Études Commerciales finally participated in the pomp and circumstance of a commencement ceremony. Dressed in a formal commencement speaker’s gown—complete with black cap—Rosanvallon had the honor of addressing hundreds of students preparing to join the ranks of Embry-Riddle’s alumni.
The President and Chief Executive Officer of Dassault Falcon Jet offered his perspective on the international opportunities that lay before the Daytona Beach, Florida, graduates of 2006. It is a global outlook Rosanvallon continues to enjoy providing to fellow Embry-Riddle Board of Trustees members, in addition to the students, interns, and alumni working with Dassault and participating in the company’s university projects.
“Aviation has been an international pursuit from the very beginning. Remember, the Wright brothers were heroes in France and their first licensees were Englishmen, the Short brothers,” Rosanvallon quipped during his commencement address.
International cooperation can open the doors to success, Rosanvallon said, citing the Falcon Jet business model as an example. Falcon involves aircraft designers in France, engine designers in Canada, avionics designers in Arizona, and then brings the jets to completion in Arkansas.
“Embry-Riddle alumni have the potential to design the first environmentally friendly supersonic business jet, solve the conundrum of air traffic management, or make commercial space flight affordable. All of that is possible, and by combining the best aerospace minds the world over, it can be achieved that much faster,” said Rosanvallon, whose own career has been fueled by building relationships with suppliers, customers, and employees on almost every continent.
Initially hired by Dassault Aviation in 1975, Rosanvallon coordinated Falcon activities between the company’s Paris headquarters and the Falcon subsidiary at Teterboro Airport in New Jersey. He held increasingly important executive positions in sales and marketing in the United States and in France, reaching his current position with Dassault in 2003.
Rosanvallon joined the university’s Board of Trustees in 2008 and began opening the doors to student experience two years later, when he penned an agreement to establish the Dassault Design Institute at Embry-Riddle. Today, engineering students continue to gain real-world experience in research and business projects, such as determining the environmental impact and performance efficiency of business jets.
“We value the out-of-the-box thinking that students bring to the table, along with their energy and enthusiasm,” said Rosanvallon. “Projects of this kind are a forum for the dissemination of Dassault’s work and a scouting ground for future prospects.”
Throughout Rosanvallon’s time at Dassault, Embry-Riddle alumni have time and again proven the caliber of their engineering expertise at the company, he said. About 34 alumni work in Dassault Falcon today.
Embry-Riddle’s Worldwide Scope
As an international member of the Board of Trustees, Rosanvallon said he is particularly interested in Embry-Riddle’s global development. In the last 10 years, Rosanvallon has watched the university maintain its strength across its aerospace education offerings and successfully broaden its scope in newer, in-demand areas, such as cybersecurity education, and its education offerings online and in Asia.
He is especially proud of Embry-Riddle’s decision to open a location in Singapore through its Worldwide Campus in 2011. Known as Embry-Riddle Asia, the campus has seen a surge in enrollment, from 20 students five years ago to more than 500 today and growing.
“I think Singapore has been a huge success and I hope we continue to have more of an international presence,” he said.
With more than 125 locations across the globe and classes available online, Rosanvallon said the university’s Worldwide Campus continues to be an “impressive” part of the university system, which includes residential campuses in Daytona Beach, Florida, and Prescott, Arizona. Embry-Riddle launched 2017 with news of one of its most prestigious rankings: No. 1 in online bachelor’s degrees in the nation by U.S. News & World Report. It is a sign of more exciting growth to come, he said.
“The fact that Embry-Riddle has been able to diversify its offerings and continue to maintain its strength in aerospace is very impressive,” Rosanvallon said. “I don’t know of any university in the United States or overseas that has achieved this world scope.”