January 2018 – from the College of Business Quarterly Newsletter for Alumni and Friends
Today is a great time to be involved with the College of Business! Finals for the fall semester are done, the holiday season has passed, and classes will soon start for the spring semester. As I look back over the past three months, a lot has happened in the College of Business. Many of our alumni achievements have been recognized with awards, our faculty members are recognized with significant leadership positions by their peers, and our students are expanding their horizons in and out of the classroom. Here are the highlights of the past three months:
The College of Business hosted the Business Alumni Awards, honoring eleven UMW alumni at this inaugural event in the University Center’s Chandler Ballroom in October. I have never been more proud to be a member of the College of Business (or UMW or MWC, for that matter) than I was on that night. In all, we had about 120 people in the room, including about 35 of our students. In addition to helping fund several of the students attending the event, many COB faculty members attended the event, as did President Paino, Vice President of Finance and Administration Richardson, Provost Mikhalevsky, College of Education Dean Peter Kelly, and others. All of the award recipient’s acceptance speeches were on point, especially for the students in the room. Sometimes it is easy to lose sight of what we are trying to accomplish in our day-in, day-out routines, but this event drove home the contributions that we, all of us, make every day.
Other UMW business graduates were recognized for achievement, too. Abbas Haider (’12) and Robert Davis (’12) were recognized by Forbes as two of the “30 under 30” in Manufacturing and Industry which is an incredible achievement and a great story.
Our faculty members continue to produce exceptional scholarship, and others have been given leadership responsibilities in their particular fields. For example, Dr. Kim Gower will serve as the 2018 Program Chair for the Management Education and Development (MED) Division of the Academy of Management, and Dr. Bidisha Burman will be a conference co-chair for the Academy of Marketing Science 2020 Annual Conference for the Academy of Marketing Science.
Eight students and two COB faculty members toured NYC (Manhattan) over fall break. They visited a total of five businesses, met eight UMW alums (2006-2014) who are working in Manhattan including three at PwC, two at ROI Training, one at Komoda Health, one at Viacom, and one at a major military veteran awareness Not-for-Profit. From all accounts, the experience was fantastic.
Our Executive in Residence, Roberta MacDonald, ’72 (Dramatic Arts), the head of Marketing for Cabot Cheese Cooperative, visited in October. Roberta talked to faculty, students, and the business community over breakfast. Those who attended the EIR breakfast found out that Roberta is not your typical buttoned-down executive. She also talked to several hundred students in three sessions in the Digital Auditorium over the course of the day. She provided many wise insights to our students and provided them with inspiration.
Tola Murphy-Baran, the first female senior executive of the National Football League, was a guest speaker in Phil Summer’s “Sports Management” class. Having worked in marketing for more than 35 years, Murphy-Baran launched and managed numerous successful businesses in the field of sports and entertainment including the NFL Sunday Ticket, which she managed as a division of the NFL. The NFL Sunday Ticket broadcast package is the sports industries most profitable and successful subscription business, grossing $1.5 billion in annual revenue. She spoke about women in sports and opportunities for them in the industry today. This is merely an example of what makes our classroom experiences remarkable.
Finally, as noted in my last report, the faculty of the College of Business was scheduled to square off in a competitive game of kickball against faculty from the College of Arts and Sciences. The game did occur, but, sadly, the COB came up short in the game. Our starting pitcher was awful, giving up three earned in the first inning. The manager made a pitching change to start the second inning, and our veteran reliever held the opponents scoreless for the remainder of the game. Although we mounted a valiant comeback, scoring 1 in the third and 1 in the fourth, it just wasn’t enough to overcome the lead surrendered by our awful starting pitcher. BUT – we all had a fantastic time. It was Drs. Fontem and Sarkar’s first time playing kickball, and it looked like it might have been Dr. Majid’s first time, too. Faculty from CAS came from the Departments of Psychological Sciences and Economics. A lot of laughs were shared by everyone, including UMW Police Chief Hall who umpired the affair. Students gathered to watch us play! Who knew Dr. Dunn could kick the ball so far?
I look forward to classes starting soon and the exciting opportunities that lay ahead over the next few months.
Acting Dean, College of Business