Jeffery Sharp

Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education , Associate Professor of Business Law
Department: Undergraduate Education, Risk Management
Office: 202P Business Building
Phone: 814-863-1947
Fax: 814-865-6284
Member of Faculty Since: 1989


Jeffery M. Sharp serves as The Smeal College’s Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education and Outreach. In this role, he represents the college on the university’s Academic Council on Undergraduate Education, the undergraduate education policy-making body for all Penn State campuses. Within the Smeal College, the program and unit leaders reporting directly to the Associate Dean are: (1)  The Academic Advising Unit Directors [the undergraduate education unit consists of 16 academic advisers, including three advising directors overseeing Student Services, Student Engagement and Student Enrichment; (2) The Director of the Office of Student Records and Business Core Curriculum; (3) The Director of the Office of Career and Corporate Connections [the director leads a team that initiates and fosters strong relationships with our corporate partners as well as providing professionalism training, career coaching, soft skill development and linking students with first destinations, co-ops and internship experiences. The team also coordinates and supports Smeal’s 40 student organizations]; (4) The Faculty Director of the Sapphire Leadership Academic Program.

Additional responsibilities and functions of the Undergraduate Dean’s office team include: (1) Enrollment Management (in coordination with the Dean’s Office and Penn State’s Central Enrollment Management Group); (2) Commencement Exercises; (3) New Student Orientation; (4) Spend a Summer Day at Penn State / Smeal College of Business (for prospective students and parents - rising high school seniors); (5) Student Enrichment Programs; (6) the Accepted Student Program.

Associate Dean Sharp is the Smeal College’s Academic Integrity Officer and Liaison to the University Office of Student Conduct. He is also the Faculty-in-Charge of the Legal Environment of Business (Business Law) Minor academic program.

As an Associate Professor of Business Law, he continues to teach commercial transactional law primarily in support of Smeal’s aspiring candidates for public accountancy. Prior to assuming his administrative responsibilities, he additionally taught courses in environmental law and the legal environment of business.

Associate Dean Sharp has published numerous articles and papers on business law subjects, including bankruptcy, commercial transactions, property rights, environmental law, and banking. His research on the impact of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act on the educational community was named the 2002-2003 winner of the Ralph C. Hoeber Award by the Academy of Legal Studies in Business.

In 2013, Associate Dean Sharp became the second Smeal College faculty member to receive the university’s highest overall teaching award, being named a Penn State Teaching Fellow. With a career committed to teaching excellence, he has been recognized by the university, the Smeal College and his research academy colleagues with awards that include the 2003 Milton S. Eisenhower Award for Distinguished Teaching (Penn State's highest teaching award recognizing those who teach primarily undergraduate students); Master Teacher by the Academy of Legal Studies in Business (2003); the Smeal College’s annual Fred Brand Award for Outstanding Teaching (1992, 2000, 2006) and named a Paiste Teaching and Learning Fellow in 2011. The student body honored Associate Dean Sharp by naming him to the Penn State “University Court” for the 2015 Fall Football Homecoming Week celebration and festivities.

Associate Dean Sharp joined the Smeal College faculty after serving as litigation counsel to national financial institutions and the FDIC during the banking crisis of the 1980s. He remains a member of the Texas State Bar Association [non-practicing status] and has been admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court.

Current Research

Professor Sharp is researching the impact of digital technology on copyright law in the educational environment.


Digital Copyrights
Property Rights
Debtor-Creditor Relations (including Bankruptcy)
Environmental Law


American Business Law Journal (reviewer)


J.D., University of Oklahoma,

M.B.A., University of Oklahoma,

B.B.A., University of Oklahoma,


B Law 444, Advanced U.C.C. and Commercial Transactions

B Law 425, Environmental Law

B Law 341, B Law I: Intro to Contracts, Liability Issues, and Intellectual Property