Friday, February 24, 2012

Stetson University Events Watch

A look at College Life

Dr. Jennifer Foo, Dr. Monica Jeancola, Dr. Nick Maddox, and Dr. Becky Oliphant
Dr. Nick Maddox, professor of Management and International Business, addresses the group. To the left are Dr. Jennifer Foo, Finance professor and chair, and Dr. Monica Jeancola, assistant professor of Accounting. On the right is Dr. Becky Oliphant, Marketing professor.

Real professors. Real campus. Real lecture. Real participation. Real insight for high school students. Real dreams of a higher education.
There was something of all that in a powerful day of community service and faculty outreach that connected students from two area high schools with the School of Business Administration.
Dr. Matthew Wilson
Dr. Matthew Wilson, a Sports Management professor, shares opportunities in his field.
“With this under my belt, I do not feel so scared about going to college,” said Pine Ridge High School senior Cierra Van Wagenen.
“It was a great outreach to the community,” said Adam Blair, BA ’05, an English teacher at University High School in Orange City. “Most valuable” was faculty members speaking with students about the wide range of career opportunities within each discipline, he said.
A campus visit for high school students to meet professors and ask questions is an important opportunity to connect with the local community and explain what a Business School education means, said Dr. Jennifer Foo, professor and chair of Finance.
“It may help motivate students who never thought of college as a possibility, even if Stetson may not be their choice,” Foo said. “In that sense, it’s a community service if only to inspire high school students that college is a desirable goal to attain for themselves.”
Dr. Monica Jeancola, assistant professor of Accounting, agrees.
“Being able to speak with college professors first hand hopefully will make these students understand that college and Stetson are goals that are attainable,” said Jeancola, “and that we as professors are approachable and willing to help them with the process of transitioning from high school to college.”
“I thought the professors were down to earth,” said Travis Pinnock, a junior at University High, “not like the ones you see in movies or hear stories about. It seemed like they valued what you had to say and treated you like an individual, not just another person in an auditorium.”
“Most times when students visit a school,” said Blair, “they don’t have the opportunity to sit and interact with the professors on such an intimate level. This was a great opportunity to see the real thing.”
High school students from Deltona and Orange City
High school students from Deltona and Orange City visit the Holler Fountain during campus tour.
More than 100 high school students from University High and Pine Ridge High in Deltona toured campus, then filled Rinker Auditorium on Jan. 23 to meet and hear a dozen Stetson University administrators and Business School faculty who stepped out of classrooms and offices to offer a glimpse into the next level of education. Professors from each department gave an overview of business studies and career opportunities in their discipline and responded to student questions. Afterwards, students attended a lecture by Dr. Greg McCann of the Family Enterprise Center.
“Stepping into Dr. McCann’s class gave me a glimpse of what real college should be like,” said Pine Ridge sophomore Sammantha Hutcherson. “It was truly inspirational, and most of all, fun!”
Pine Ridge’s economic breakdown includes a high percentage of students who come from low-income homes and many whose parents and grandparents never went to college, said Marianne Blair, BBA ’06, MAcc ’07. The Pine Ridge accounting and business teacher is an adjunct business professor who has helped coordinate the visits since they began in 2010.
“Our goal at Pine Ridge is to inspire students to consider the possibility of college and inevitably attend,” said Marianne, who is married to Adam. “The Stetson field trip allows the students to get a glimpse of the college life and hopefully see themselves in that world one day. Speaking to professors on a one-on-one basis and hearing a college lecture as a high school student has proven to be an invaluable experience year after year.”

Learning from success

Tony Michaelides
British entrepreneur Tony Michaelides shares lessons from his career in the music business.
Drawing on a wide range of success stories, including his own, Tony Michaelides easily held the attention of students in November who gathered in the Lynn Business Center’s Rinker Auditorium to hear the renowned music producer and promoter. The British entrepreneur offered distinctly business-related insights inspired by his 37-year career in the music industry.
“Never let it rest until your good is better and your better is best,” Michaelides told students, noting that many of the lessons he learned apply not only to music, but to all endeavors. Students should seek to learn, he said, from others because “their hindsight can be your foresight.”
He shared his personal perspective of working with music greats such as U2, Bob Marley, Elvis Costello, Whitney Houston, Annie Lennox and others, but he also pulled from a wide range of philosophies, including business magnate Richard Branson, singer and humanitarian Bono, computer pioneer Steve Jobs and writer Aldoux Huxley. The lecture was sponsored by the School of Business Administration’s endowed Roberson Visiting Executive in Residence Program, the School of Music and the office of Career Development and Academic Advising.

Following the path of Buddha

Gilded gold face of the dying Buddha
Gilded gold face of the dying Buddha, a horizontal statue 20-foot long and some 1,500 years old at Kushinagar, the last stop on the Path of Buddha pilgrimage.
Seeing sacred sites of Buddha was an experience in contrast, insight and new perspective for a veteran Finance professor who has long followed the ancient holy man’s teachings, but never walked in his footsteps.
Treading the Path of Buddha in northwestern India and Nepal was not only a spiritual pilgrimage for Dr. James Mallett, but also an intellectual and scholarly journey filled with colorful contemplative visions every day.
He even attended a teaching by Dali Lama, living symbol of Buddhism for the world.
Dr. Phillip Lucas and Dr. James Mallett
Two pilgrims pause in front of a landmark statue on the Path of Buddha. Dr. James Mallett is on the right, and Dr. Phillip Lucas is on the left.
“The overwhelming mix of spirit and substance, sacred and secular was unlike anything I have experienced in my life,” said Mallett. “I cannot adequately describe it. Thank goodness my three skilled companions were focused on documenting the journey.”
Not surprisingly, he gained insight he knows he can use in Lynn Business Center classrooms.
The group spent the recent long Winter Break on the pilgrimage, identified by Buddha himself when he was near death. It’s a series of four sites: the place of Buddha’s birth, the place of his enlightenment, the place of his first teaching and the place of his death. The events took place some 2,500 years ago.
Mallett had wanted for some time to travel to India and Nepal, overwhelmingly Hindu countries, to follow the Path of Buddha. The wish evolved into the idea of producing a photo book of the four holy sites. Each of his companions, all from DeLand, was selected because of their specific talents for the project.
“Dr. Phillip Lucas, Stetson professor of Religious Studies, helped me understand the Hindu sites,” said Mallett. “Buddhist minister Morris Sullivan was an excellent spiritual guide, and photographer Gary Monroe of Daytona State College artistically captured the sites.”
The Ganges River
The Ganges River is used for bathing, laundry and transport and many other essential purposes. Hindu pilgrims here are gathered on its banks in Varanasi, one of India’s holiest sites and not far from the place where Buddha first taught.

Mallett will oversee projects coming from the trip like the book of Monroe’s photographs and Sullivan’s text. Lucas shot video to help create an educational website and DVD on the concept of pilgrimage. More long-range projects centered on Buddhism are contemplated.
Contrasts of the journey linger in Mallett’s memory – dogs and goats eat rotting garbage in streets soiled by dung as people wash clothes and bathe in water covered in floating refuse. Nearby, babies play and families live on dirty mats. Monkeys roam the streets. Processions of chanting pilgrims pray, and barefoot monks in red and saffron robes hold begging bowls against a backdrop of temples, sacred statues, holy ruins and groves within sight of worn tents and huts of sticks and plastic.
“I was overwhelmed by the poverty I saw and was very impressed in how resilient people are in dealing with the hardships they have to face,” he said.
Monks study near one of many temples and monasteries in Bodh Gaya.
Monks study near one of many temples and monasteries in Bodh Gaya.

The group of scholars was part of a host of more than 200,000 from 63 countries, according to news reports, who converged on one pilgrimage site, Bodh Gaya, where Buddha attained enlightenment, when the Dali Lama visited and taught at the beginning of this year. Security was tight and competition fierce to enter the tent with the spiritual leader and Mallett became separated from his companions. They failed to gain entry, but he slipped inside by another way and saw the Dali Lama teaching to thousands.
“I learned that what I thought I knew about India from studying and teaching international finance did not prepare me to see the Indian economy work at the micro level,” said Mallett, who came to Stetson in 1984. “It made me very humble to realize that outside advice that experts give does not work unless it fits into the culture and religion of the local people. To see small shop owners and individuals struggle to make a living makes me appreciate how life works in a developing country.”
The photo book, to be titled “The Path of Buddha,” is expected to be complete in about a year, he said.
“It will take me a long time to fully process the amazing experience,” said Mallett. “I have no doubt it will permeate my thoughts for the rest of my life.”

Doing business Down Under

Imagine celebrating the New Year with fireworks in a dark sky above Pacific islands and below, an otherworldly phosphorescent light show in dark reef-clustered waters.

Or hugging a koala. Or floating on a river through black caverns of glow worms. Or dancing with tattooed Maoris, engulfed in warm steam of volcanic springs, cuddling lambs, feeding kangaroos and penguins and attending a performance in a world-renowned performing arts center.

And what’s all that got to do with business studies?

Everything, say 13 students who spent 16 days immersed in the business and culture of New Zealand and southern Australia after an intense semester of study in Dr. Becky Oliphant’s International Business 301.

“I called this class Business, Culture, History and Service in New Zealand and Australia, so it was not just about doing business in the countries,” said Oliphant, who led the group that left Florida two days after Christmas.

But there was plenty of business in the packed itinerary.

Take that underwater light show in New Zealand’s Bay of Islands, for instance. Not only was there night kayaking and swimming in water swept with bright phosphoresce as students (and fish) moved, but there were lessons from the boat crew in the business of fishing, gathering sea urchins for foreign markets and operating an eco-tourism enterprise.

Students learned about unique niche tourism from native Maori tribesmen and about winery business at a seaside winery. Farmers taught them about sheep herding, staffers at the U.S. Consulate in Sydney revealed ways they help American businesses trade with Australia and students gained insights into operations of the famous Sydney Opera House during a private tour.

There were business perspectives at a Hobbit village created for Lord of the Rings films. Owners made the site a top attraction called Hobbiton.

Students saw global trade in action at the sprawling Sydney Fish Market, a world exchange of seafood. Some learned what a big difference the use of high quality local ingredients can make in food.

The use of native food is pushed by the two countries, said Sarah Rodriguez, a senior Management and Marketing major from Deltona, Fla.

“I was highly impressed by the whole “local” concept,” Rodriguez said. “They use local fishermen, local beef, and other locally produced food. They hold true to these values.” It’s even printed on burger wrappers, she said. Some companies there have rejected foreign expansion and profit because it compromises commitment to local products. Strict standards mean foreign companies may have to change ingredients to sell Down Under, she said.

“I did give up fast food because of the trip,” said Rodriguez. After ordering a cheeseburger from the same fast food chain when she returned, she quit. “It’s just not the same here … it had a different taste. Their fast food seems healthier.”

Social justice and service figured into the itinerary, too.

Students visited the New South Wales Reconciliation Council to learn efforts of mitigating wrongs of the past and Aboriginal rights and issues. They also volunteered at a new church-based thrift shop in Sydney to clean, organize and solicit donations to help at-risk youth.

“By the time we left it looked like a real clothing store with very nice displays,” said Kara Oldford, a senior Marketing major from Michigan. “It ended up being fun. We really made a difference and it felt great.”

It was the first time a Stetson Business School group had visited the two countries. In recent years, the school has offered more international study opportunities and groups have visited China, South Africa, the United Arab Emirates, Malaysia, Vietnam and other countries.

“I think that students, especially those in the Business School, should be almost required to do some type of study abroad experience,” said Aubrey Burris of Lakeland, a senior minoring in two business fields. “Traveling to a foreign country forces you outside of your comfort zone in new experiences with new people.”

Faculty trio Veritate Winds to perform at Stetson March 16

Veritate Winds, the Stetson University faculty trio, will perform in a Chamber Recital, Friday, March 16, at 7:30 p.m. in Lee Chapel inside Elizabeth Hall, located at 421 N. Woodland Blvd., DeLand. Veritate Winds have received critical acclaim here and abroad. The trio is composed of Stetson School of Music faculty members: Dr. Ann Adams, oboe; Dr. Lynn Musco, clarinet; and Dr. Ashley Heintzen, bassoon.

Dr. Ann Adams, professor of Oboe and Music Education at Stetson University since 1989, is a founding member of the faculty woodwind trio, Tres Vientos, and Veritate Winds, when it was the faculty woodwind quintet. Tres Vientos released their first CD in January 2000, and Veritate Winds performed at the International Double Reed Society (IDRS) Conference in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She is an active recitalist and clinician and frequent performer with various orchestras and chamber ensembles throughout central Florida, including the Bach Festival Orchestra of Winter Park and Bach Festival Society of Kalamazoo. She is an active member of the International Double Reed Society, the College Music Society, the Music Educator’s National Conference, the Florida Music Educator’s Association and the Florida Bandmaster’s Association.

Dr. Lynn Musco has been professor of Clarinet and Coordinator of Woodwind Studies at Stetson University since 1988. She is a founding member of Tres Vientos, Veritate Winds and, most recently, Trio Della Canno, resident faculty woodwind trios and woodwind quintet at Stetson University. She is an active performer both on and off the Stetson campus, performing in both solo and chamber music recitals, including the Bach Festival Orchestra of Winter Park, the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra, and she often performs as an Educational Materials Recording Artist.

Dr. Ashley Heintzen has been a bassoon instructor at Stetson University since 1994, and is a founding member of the faculty ensembles Veritate Winds and Trio Della Canno. She teaches applied and studio bassoon, reed making, and coaches chamber music. She is a member of the Bach Festival of Winter Park and the Brevard Symphony, and plays with the Orlando Philharmonic, Jacksonville Symphony and Florida West Coast Symphony.

Prices for admission are $10 general public; $8 senior citizens; $5 area students. More information: Stetson University’s Concert Line (386) 822-8947; School of Music (386) 822-8950;

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Studying in Europe is not just for students; faculty and entire learning experience are enhanced abroad

Business student Bogdana Subachev Sichko and Lecturer Peggy Stahl
Business student Bogdana Subachev Sichko and Lecturer Peggy Stahl pause among pink hydrangeas at the Mirabell Palace in Salzburg, Austria.

Students studying in the heart of Alpine Europe while exploring countries and capitals with classmates are usually the focus of praise for the Summer Innsbruck Program.
Which is as it should be. The School of Business Administration created the program in 1997 for students to gain a more global perspective, not only of business, but culture and history, too.
However, there’s a little publicized secret about the Summer Innsbruck Program – it’s not just for students. It’s also an outstanding experience for faculty on many levels, from economic insight and teaching perspectives to a stronger learning relationship with students.
In short, it helps make better teachers.
But there’s another incomparable aspect to the teaching job. “I get to do it in Europe and travel the Continent in my spare time,” says Dr. Chris Tobler, who teaches a statistics course.
Dr. Jim Mallett surrounded by students during a mountain hike near Innsbruck
Dr. Jim Mallett, shown here wearing a red cap and surrounded by students during a mountain hike near Innsbruck, is director of the Summer Innsbruck Program.

It’s undeniable that one attraction is getting to spend a working summer in the cool Alpine climate where air conditioning isn’t needed and jackets are sometimes needed, says Dr. Jim Mallett, program director and finance professor. But he knows the experience also improves faculty, too.
Other professors say the same thing.
“We believe that any time you can have a unique teaching experience, it makes you a better professor,” said Dr. John Tichenor, speaking for himself and his wife, Mercedes, who co-teach a leadership course in the program. “The Innsbruck program allows us to fully concentrate on our course and the students without being distracted by the ‘busyness’ of the regular school year.”
“I have much more time in Innsbruck to focus on learning and teaching,” said Tom Smith, “because the routine distractions of everyday life have been put on hold.” Smith is a retired business executive who has taught in DeLand and is a regular visiting faculty member in Innsbruck.
Tom Smith and his wife, Ann, with business students Mike Dandurand and Matt Brown
Innsbruck Program faculty member Tom Smith and his wife, Ann, stand in a sidewalk café in Vipiteno, Italy with business students Mike Dandurand, right, and Matt Brown, left. They attended a concert at the Orfeo Music Festival.

Other faculty members agree. Being able to focus without distraction can result in a more satisfying teaching experience.
Peggy Stahl, a marketing lecturer, sees another advantage, one that makes her a better teacher.
“Teaching is 24/7 in this rich environment,” she said, and because she “travels, eats and hangs out” with students outside class, she gains better understanding of their perspectives and insights into her courses which builds stronger learning relationships. “With fewer classes and fewer students, I can dedicate lots of one-on-one time with them sightseeing, taking in the mountain air, talking about their lives and dreams or just having fun.”
Her personal travel experiences during the summer help make her a more effective teacher in Stetson classrooms the rest of the year: “I can speak to those travel experiences when discussing global issues in management and strategy.”
“Faculty get the opportunity to talk to students at cafes and on organized trips and hikes,” said Mallett, and those discussions often center on studies. Discussions also encompass daily European experiences, which often bear on classroom lessons.
Drs. John and Mercedes Tichenor walking along a street in Innsbruck’s Old Town behind their daughter, Emily
One benefit of teaching in the Innsbruck Program is living in historic and picturesque surroundings that invite strollers like Drs. John and Mercedes Tichenor shown here walking along a street in Innsbruck’s Old Town behind their daughter, Emily.

“It is easier to talk to the students about foreign currency when they are spending that currency daily,” said Mallett. “Students relate more easily to Italian debt problems and financial markets when they have recently traveled to that country.”
On one level, management and marketing lessons are easier to teach in Innsbruck, said Stahl. Students’ awareness is heightened in the new environment; “all their synapses are fired up and the learning mode is turned on.
“The context of global marketing theories and concepts have more meaning to them because they observe different practices, ads and business norms in their travels,” she said. “It’s the best of experiential education.”
The Innsbruck learning experience is “very holistic,” said Dr. Mercedes Tichenor, and professors use it to their advantage. Instruction and assignments are just as rigorous as those at Stetson, she said, but learning is intensified outside class with experiences of language, culture, customs, public transportation, food and social relations all of which are often used in class discussions.
Faculty members work hard partly because the week is compressed with a lot of material to cover in a short time. Classes meet only four days a week for six weeks. But, as Tobler says, the hard work is worthwhile when there’s a long weekend ahead for travel to Venice, Paris or Prague.
Given technologies available in and out of the classrooms at the University of Innsbruck, it’s not a lot different from teaching in Lynn Business Center classrooms, faculty members say.
But there are minor challenges.
Dr. Chris Tobler with students Ady Goss, Rachel Isaacson, Dana Subachev and Ryan Carter
The dramatic Alpine landscape outside classroom windows is a distinctive part of teaching in the Summer Innsbruck Program, says Dr. Chris Tobler, shown here during class with students Ady Goss, Rachel Isaacson, Bogdana Subachev Sinchko and Ryan Carter.

Computers have instructions in German and keyboards have slight variations to account for German symbols “which can make typing interesting,” said Mercedes Tichenor. Stahl said she misses the “incredibly valuable” staff support in the Lynn Business Center.
There is another pleasantly distracting challenge.
“The hardest challenge of teaching here,” said Tobler, a first-year Innsbruck faculty member, “is keeping focused as I glance out the 11th floor window at the spectacular view of the town, the river cutting through it and the Alps surrounding it.”
Mallet says that’s one challenge all Innsbruck faculty find overwhelming at times and never fully become accustomed to it.

For Success: 'Embrace deversity'

Yvonne Chang’s Disney corporate executive portrait shows a familiar shadow over her shoulder.
Cultural diversity has defined a distinctive philosophy for the success of Yvonne Chang, a woman who traces her roots to Cuba and her greatest inspiration no further than her Caribbean/Chinese parents.
“All that I am and will ever be, I owe to my parents,” said Chang, MBA ’09, director of Operations Integration for Disney Vacation Development Inc.
Their values led her to believe in true love, following her dreams against all odds and giving 150 percent to achieve her goals, she said. Add loyalty, faith and deep love of family to the powerful mix and the sum is an extraordinary business and community figure who advises the School of Business and is helping select its next dean.
Chang’s formula for her success is simple: Embrace diversity.
“Diversity isn’t optional if you want to be successful. It’s essential,” Chang says of her philosophy. A basic life lesson she has learned is that humans tend to view the world through the infinite perspectives of their personal experiences.
“A successful person simply cannot let bias get in the way,” she said. “If we do not push ourselves to be open and accepting, we will sadly miss many opportunities in this world. My personal and professional successes have come from my willingness to be open to all possibilities.”
The philosophy springs from Chang’s own experience growing up in a home where three cultures were “equally celebrated” – Hispanic, Chinese and American. Her Cantonese father, SuTai Chang, met her mother, Rosa, in Havana where they married and started a family. But after losing their business to the Communist revolution, they fled the oppressive environment to seek a better life for their children in America.
That flight’s aftermath forged the shy child’s character and her values as she grew up in Washington,D.C., to become more and more aware of the deep sacrifice and purpose of her parents’ lives.
“They left Cuba and came to the United States with essentially no resources and very limited English fluency with the hope and dream of creating a better future for their children,” Chang said. “When I think of their unimaginable sacrifices, and the extraordinary challenges they overcame when they first arrived, working nearly seven days a week, it makes my heart swell.”
Without significant material wealth, her parents focused on a legacy that could not be lost, a key to a bright future – a good education, high integrity, strong work ethic, commitment to excellence and community. As eldest child, Chang shouldered uncommon family duties, helping handle family business, translating for her parents, helping care for younger siblings and feeling a “tremendous sense of responsibility” to be a strong role model who embodied the values of her parents.
From a very early age, she said, she began to understand that her parents’ sacrifice and hard work was all so their children could have a better life with greater opportunities.
“I became obsessed with supporting them in this goal,” she said. “It drove me and defined me.”
She was determined to give her parents the best possible “return on their investment” and to leverage to the fullest her education and opportunities. In recent years, her parents lived a few minutes away from Chang and her husband, Bill Wahl, but her mother passed away in 2011.
“I try my best to honor her each and every day by being the best human being I can possibly be,” said Chang. “Everything my parents did, and everything they stood for, has led me to this very moment in my life.”
Yvonne Chang after her induction into the Beta Gamma Sigma honor society, with her husband, Bill Wahl, left, and the parents who inspired her to success, Rosa and SuTai Chang.
From missiles to magic: Chang’s career
Yvonne Chang’s engineering degree from George Mason University helped her land a job with a Department of Defense engineering contractor in 1986, which included work on missile guidance systems. She went on to hold a variety of posts, from research and development to public relations, during 11 years at AT&T/Lucent Technologies.
In 1998, she took a job at Disney, a move that led to a number of roles in Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, including Communications and in the Multi-market Business Development division. She directed critical initiatives involving multicultural and multilingual products and services, strategic partnerships with women and minority business and civic organizations, diversity and inclusion strategies for workforce, workplace, products and services and corporate citizenship.
Chang now serves as the director of operations integration for Disney Vacation Club, which offers timeshare experiences to nearly 500,000 individual members in 50 states and nearly 100 countries. She leads a variety of operations and business areas to support the organization’s global growth.
“One of my personal passions is community involvement,” said Chang, who has in the last decade helped lead many Metro Orlando organizations, including the National Entrepreneur Center, the Hispanic Chamber, the International Affairs Commission, Orlando Magic Youth Foundation, African American Chamber, Hispanic Business Initiatives Fund, Leadership Orlando and Women Unlimited.
Chang is a member of the School of Business Board of Advisors and the Business Dean Search Committee.

High standards keep B School among world's elite

Fundamental issues of self-examination for the Business School are coalescing this fall as a five-year endeavor enters the home stretch for reaccreditation by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International.
The issues are crucial and elemental. What should students be? Know? Be able to do? And, critically, how the School of Business Administration - and the world -- can be assured of these achievements.
"Accreditation by the AACSB says we are among the elite business schools in the world," said Dr. Jud Stryker, chairman of the Maintenance of Accreditation Committee. "It is vital for the reputation of our business school that we maintain this level of excellence."
The AACSB first accredited the Stetson's Business School in 1996, so this is the third review to maintain the accreditation. Assessment, analysis and endeavor involving every aspect of the school and faculty member have been going on since the last reaccreditation in 2005.
Final reports are being collected and assimilated by the Accreditation Maintenance Committee in anticipation of an AACSB Peer Review Team visit in late January. Stryker said he couldn't hazard a guess at the great number of faculty and staff hours that have gone into the long process.
"So many people have been part of the process," he said. "Every faculty member has played an important role, but the effort grows in intensity as the team visit approaches and we must show that we have done what we said we would do."
The AACSB doesn't make specific requirements and say "you absolutely must do this or that," said Stryker, also associate dean of the Business School and chair of the Accounting Department. Instead, it lays out guidelines and the school itself establishes the parameters of unceasing improvements in research, scholarship, assurance of learning, sufficiency of qualified faculty, strategic planning, commitment of the university to the improvements and many, many other factors encompassing the entire school.
This graphic helps visualize elements of an MBA. "Continuous improvement" of the business and accounting programs is stressed by the AACSB, said Stryker. Quality of all facets of the school must be constantly monitored, improved and maintained. The AACSB's visit is the culmination of the previous five years' efforts.
Less than 5 percent of the world's business schools have achieved the elite distinction of AACSB accreditation. Stetson holds two separate AACSB accreditations, one for the entire Business School and a second, specialized accreditation for its Accounting Program. Almost 600 business schools in the world hold the former, but only 173 hold both.
"And if you look at private schools who hold both accreditations," said Stryker, "it would be in the area of 35 schools worldwide."
Although hundreds of details covering every aspect of the school are involved in honing an educational edge to meet the world's most discerning standards, the entire effort is focused on one straightforward goal: unsurpassed quality of student learning.
A reaccreditation presentation earlier this year to the Business School Board of Advisors asked several questions that reflect the crux of the effort: "What do we want our students to BE when they graduate from Stetson? What should they KNOW? What should they be able to DO? How can we be assured that they have learned what we want them to learn? How can we improve learning outcomes?"
The questions go to the core of the school's vision and mission, evident in every classroom and inherent in the solid, unquestionable reputation of every student's diploma. Stryker has no uncertainty that the questions' intrinsic standards have been exceeded in every way: "I have no doubt we will be reaccredited."
Other faculty members serving on the Accreditation Maintenance Committee are Mike Bitter, Carolyn Nicholson, Ted Surynt, Michelle DeMoss, Yingtao (Michael) Shen, Scott Jones and Stuart Michelson, dean of the Business School.  

Stetson Piano Scholars Festival

Stetson University’s School of Music presents a weekend of piano performances by faculty and scholars, Friday, Feb. 24 through Sunday Feb. 26, with a special guest performance by recording artist Mirian Conti on Friday, Feb. 24. All concert performances are open to the public and will be in Lee Chapel inside Elizabeth Hall, located at 421 N. Woodland Blvd., DeLand. The concert schedule for the weekend is as follows:
  • Friday, Feb. 24 – Guest Recital featuring Mirian Conti, 7:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, Feb. 25 – Scholars’ Recital, 7:30 p.m.
  • Sunday, Feb. 26 – Faculty Recital featuring Edit Palmer and Michael Rickman, 3 p.m.
Guest pianist Mirian Conti, an Argentine-American and a prolific recording artist has garnered rave reviews for her recent CD release of the Complete Chopin Mazurkas on the newly created Steinway label. Her 17 recordings cover an array of styles, composers and labels. In addition to standard classical works, her repertoire is impressively wide and varied including music from Spain, Latin America and North America. She is actively involved in the music education of young pianists. For many years she has been creating and directing competition, festivals and marathons in the U.S. and South America, and has awarded scholarships and prizes to further the musical education of these young musicians.
Dr. Edit Palmer, a native ofHungary, where she graduated from the Franz Liszt Conservatory of Music with highest honors, has been a lecturer of Music in Stetson’s School of Music since 1997. During her early studies, she had won numerous piano competitions including the First Hungarian National Piano Competition in 1980. After immigrating to the United States, she earned her B.A. in piano performance at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. While an undergraduate and a student of Dr. Phillip Clarke, she held numerous solo recitals, played in various ensembles, and won many awards culminating in the Tenth Annual Bartok-Kabalevsky International Piano Competition in Redford,Virginia.
Dr. Michael Rickman, Steinway Artist, joined the School of Music faculty at Stetson University in 1983. In 1990, he was the first recipient of Stetson University’s Homer and Dolly Hand Award for Creative Activity and Research. In 1995, he received the highest honor given by Stetson University, the William Hugh McEniry Award for Excellence in Teaching. He received grants from Stetson University allowing him to study the late works of Beethoven and Schubert with the pianist Edward Kilenyi, and the works of Twentieth Century Dutch composers with Dutch pianist-composer Piet Stalmeier. Rickman has traveled and taught world-wide and gained several critically acclaimed reviews for his style and technique. Michael Rickmanhas two compact discs available on the Lakeside Records label, Romantic Realms, with works of Schubert and Brahms, and Romantic Realms II, with works of Robert Schumann. His performances can also be heard regularly on Florida Public Radio.
Admission to each concert is $10 general public, $8 senior citizens and $5 area students. For more information call the concert line (386) 822-8974, the School of Music (822) 8950 or visit

Schwarz is new Dean of Business School

Thomas Schwarz

Stetson University has selected Dr. Thomas V. Schwarz, professor and the Rick Muth Family Endowed Chair in Family Business at California State University Fullerton, as the new dean of Stetson’s School of Business Administration, effective this summer.

Schwarz has extensive professional experience in both higher education and business. He has held an endowed professorship in Family Business at Cal State Fullerton’s Mihaylo College of Business Administration since 2009. Before that he was director for nine years of the Family Owned Business Institute (FOBI) and the Center for Entrepreneurship at Grand Valley State University in Grand Rapids, Mich. Since 2002, he has also served as a visiting professor of entrepreneurship at the Athens University of Economics and Business, Decision Sciences Graduate Program, in Athens, Greece.

“Dr. Schwarz will focus on advancing excellence and defining distinction in our business programs,” said Dr. Elizabeth “Beth” Paul, Stetson provost and vice president for academic affairs. ”Tom brings national and international knowledge, experience, and reputation, as well as strong strategic leadership skills and compelling vision for 21st century business education. We are thrilled to have him join our dynamic learning community.”

Schwarz earned a Doctorate of Business Administration in finance from Florida State University and also attended FSU for his MBA and undergraduate degrees. He completed post-doctoral studies in international business at the University of South Carolina and in family business advising at the Family Firm Institute.

“I couldn’t be more excited to join such a prestigious institution both for its outstanding history and its bright future,” Schwarz said. “Stetson lies at the center of growth and opportunity, and along with its staunch alumni, students, staff and faculty, its future is very bright indeed. It’s clear that these people care, and their desire is for excellence.”

Prior to joining Grand Valley in 2000, Schwarz worked in senior management and as treasurer for a family-owned manufacturing business and as an entrepreneur/owner of several other family firms. He taught finance at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and also held positions with the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and in the futures industry in Chicago.

Schwarz is recognized nationally and internationally as a leader in the fields of family business and entrepreneurship. His excellence and regard in the field resulted in the prestigious award of Fellow Status from the Family Firm Institute in 2010. He previously served on the Body of Knowledge Committee of the Family Firm Institute and was the Research Program Co-Director for the Boston 2004 and the Chicago 2005 conferences. He is also a founding co-editor of the organization’s publication, the Family Firm Practitioner. He has been a member of the Strategic Planning Committee for the Family Firm Institute since 2009. He has served with the Family Enterprise Research Conference (FERC) since 2007 and was 2011 Conference co-host. Schwarz also received the Teaching Excellence Award 2003, 2004, 2006 from Athens University of Economics and Business; and an Honorable Mention Award from the 2007 Family Enterprise Research Conference.

His research interests include international family business, entrepreneurship and finance.His publications have appeared in the Journal of Finance, Family Business Review, International Journal of Emerging Markets, Journal of Banking and Finance, The International Small Business Journal, Journal of Asian Business, as well as others. He is co-editor of the recent release of an 11-volume set titled, “Culturally-Sensitive Models of Family Business: A Compendium using the GLOBE Paradigm.”

Schwarz will succeed Dr.Stuart Michelson, who plans to return to the Stetson classroom in his position as the George and Sarah Roland Professor of Finance.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

'Internationalizing' perspectives on career, life

Rebecca Sluss, Kim Hamill, Georgette Maciejewski, Kayla Richmond and Michael Scanio
King Ludwig’s castle in Bavaria provides a dramatic landscape background for graduate students. Jason Sauter is in the back. In front are Rebecca Sluss, Kim Hamill, Georgette Maciejewski, Kayla Richmond and Michael Scanio.

Awesome Alpine landscapes overwhelm MBA students studying in the mountainous countries around Innsbruck, Austria, but more subtle landscapes strike students just as deeply when they begin to notice lifestyles and business practices.
“Each country we visited in Europe had its own unique sense of pride,” said Rebecca Sluss of Celebration, a pride evident in business practices. Salzburg’s Stiegl brewery, for instance, used only Austrian raw materials to make its authentic Austrian beer.
MBA students Jason Sauter, Mike Scanio, Kayla Richmond, Kim Hamill and Reggie Lambert
Excited MBA students Jason Sauter, Mike Scanio, Kayla Richmond, Kim Hamill and Reggie Lambert pause below a waterfall at the end of a radical canyon descent in an Alpine river.

“Europeans are proud,” said Kayla Richmond of Fort Myers. “They appreciate their heritage and want to keep businesses in their country.” Austrians who live only five minutes from the border won’t go to another country to buy goods even if it saves them money. “They want their money to stay in Austria.”
European lifestyles struck other students as distinctly different from what they knew.
“My perception was Europeans have more of a meaningful social life,” said Reggie Lambert of Winter Garden. “They make time to enjoy life and appear to have more balance. In the U.S. there is this tendency to stay ahead and the definition of ‘stay ahead’ is to work…work while missing out on life.”
“From the moment we enter kindergarten, Americans are competing in some form or fashion,” said Matt Reynolds of Fort Myers. “I believe we sacrifice too much for the bottom line. In Europe the bottom line is a concern, but it appears that work-life-balance, family and happiness in general takes precedence.”
Dr. Becky Oliphant
Dr. Becky Oliphant

Different cultural and business landscapes are important lessons of the MBA Summer International Program, said Dr. Becky Oliphant, program director. It not only internationalizes students’ perspectives, but they gain understanding of themselves and their career plans, and return better prepared as world-class business professionals.
“The heightened awareness and understanding doesn’t happen just in European studies,” she said. “It happens in all study abroad (programs). Being immersed in a new culture puts students’ brains in hyper mode to absorb and learn in all dimensions and with all senses.”
Since the program began in 2006, Oliphant has led some 175 students to Italy, Germany, Austria, China and Japan, and she is planning trips to Australia, New Zealand and Korea.
Graduate students watch Riedel wine glasses being made.
Students watch Riedel wine glasses being made from a catwalk above the production floor in Kufstein, Austria.

The July 11-Aug. 5 international program included more than classroom business studies. Students visited a silver mine, an Italian winery, the Munich BMW plant, Stiegl Brewery, Grassmayer Bell Foundry and operations of Riedel Glass and Swarovski Crystal. They also toured castles, cities, the Dachau Memorial Camp, paraglided and rock-climbed down a canyon stream.
Seeing European manufacturing and production facilities gave students a deeper appreciation of European craftsmanship and quality.
“Most businesses refuse to sacrifice quality for quantity,” said Richmond, a trait she particularly noticed at the Stiegl Brewery. “Its priorities do not include selling to countries like the U.S. because, in the exportation, selling and purchasing of the beer, the story of Stiegl would be lost.”
Companies want customers to appreciate their product, she said.
“It’s all about the experience and enjoying things in life, instead of an impersonal experience when you purchase things in countries like the U.S. or China,” she said. “Americans are more willing to pay for the cheaper good or service instead of one that costs a little more, but is of better quality.
MBA student Charles Reynolds
Charles Reynolds joined other MBA students to paraglide over an Austrian valley.

“In Europe, it is not about finding the cheapest route.”
Enjoying things in life includes enjoying work, said Reynolds. “It seemed that most of the workers we visited with loved what they did and really enjoyed being at work,” he said. “Wolfgang, our winery guide, had a passion for wine, and you could tell he loved sharing his experiences with us. Another guy told me he has the best job in the world.”
The summer experience may change his life, said Reynolds.
“The basic lesson I learned is that it is important to take the time to slow down and enjoy life,” he said. “It made me realize that I’m spending too much of my time worrying about tomorrow, building my resume, keeping an eye on my checks-and-balances rather than enjoying today.”

Nick Fantini and other MBA students
Nick Fantini and other MBA students during a bike tour through Munich.

Another student, Nick Fantini of Windemere, said he gained a career advantage. “I truly feel this experience will give me a unique advantage in the workplace,” said the 14-year Disney employee. “I’ll have experience and an emotional perspective that few peers or leaders possess. I plan to leverage this perspective to grow my career and better create a memorable experience for our international clients and guests.”
For more information on international MBA study opportunities, check out the program website, or call (386) 822-7436 or email Oliphant at

A study in consumer behavior

Marketing students and Conservation Biology students stand on New Smyrna Beach after cleaning trash and garbage from a section of sand.
Blue sky and white sand met a wave of “green” Marketing students when they hit the beach in late summer to clean up trash and gain a personal, direct perspective on consumer behavior.
Marketing major Justin Bosco triumphantly displays a bag of trash.

It’s a powerful behavior they hope to influence some day as marketing professionals, but it’s not always pretty.

Despite years of green marketing efforts by government and business aimed at changing behavior, students found beer cans, food wrappers, beach toys, bottle caps and hundreds, even thousands, of cigarette butts.

“It showed that some people do not care about the environment and will leave trash wherever they want,” said Kerry Burke, a junior Marketing major from Atlantic City, N.J.

“I don’t think they truly understand the impact they are having on the environment when they leave their garbage,” said senior Lyllique Roman of Kissimmee, a Sport Management major who is minoring in Business and Marketing.

“Until people start changing their habits and realizing the implications of their actions, trash will continue to be a problem,” said Justin Bosco, a junior from Vero Beach majoring in Marketing and Management. “Most of the items I found on the beach could have easily been disposed of if the people that left them weren’t so careless.”
Liz Harting, center, records the trash that Nina Laureano, left, and Alex Dobbs drop in the bag. Harting and Dobbs are Marketing students and Laureano is a Family Enterprise major.

Understanding the basic concepts and theories of consumer behavior and how that knowledge helps shape marketing strategies is the focus of Consumer Dynamics (MKG 316), a course taught this fall by Dr. Michelle DeMoss who used “green marketing” with a water theme to demonstrate the concepts.

“Green marketing is a powerful trend in the global marketplace,” said DeMoss, chair of the Marketing Department. “It illustrates the broader definition of marketing in that it demonstrates the importance of weighing the impact of marketing decisions on customers, clients, partners, and society at large.”

DeMoss structured the course to support the goals of the Stetson GREEN program, using interdisciplinary activities and speakers that complemented study being done by Dr. Kirsten Work’s conservation biology students in the College of Arts & Sciences. Both professors’ students participated in the beach cleanup and shared speakers. One was Malissa Dillon, assistant director of Communications and Governmental Affairs at the St. Johns River Water Management District who visited classes in September.

Dillon is a marketer in the business of conserving and managing water, which depends greatly on consumer behavior, she told students.

“We are very dependent on consumer behavior,” she told the students. “Water is a kind of weird product, but you use the same marketing tools and concepts.”
Malissa Dillon, a government marketing professional, speaks to Consumer Dynamics students.

“You have to position the issues in the right way to get people’s attention and understanding. Use a simple message, make it memorable and include a call to action,” said Dillon.

Students peppered Dillon with questions about marketing budgets, water regulation, water sources, consumer trends, behavior and surveys.

As part of the course, students conducted in-depth interviews to understand the impact of internal and external factors on consumer decisions about green products. Students applied concepts learned in class to compare and contrast reasoning behind the decisions to better understand the dynamics that shape marketing strategies.

A supplemental text in the course is Jacquelyn Ottman’s “The New Rules of Green Marketing: Strategies, Tools, and Inspiration for Sustainable Branding.”

Two other community service cleanup projects also helped serve dual purposes for the course – understanding the impact of certain consumer behaviors and furthering Stetson GREEN goals, which include numerous environmental and community actions. The cleanup efforts targeted the inland wetlands of Bicentennial Youth Park and the coastal wetlands of Spruce Creek/Rose Bay.

All the course’s varied components help bring consumer behavior into focus, students say, and bring understanding that will help them in their careers.
Marketing student Kursten Lizarraga talks to marketer Malissa Dillon after class.
“Lessons like these can be applied not only to marketing careers but any career in the business world,” said Ryan Carter, a senior Marketing major from Mims. “With the economy how it is today, corporations and the market in general need to know how to better manage its most valuable resource – the consumer.”

“It’s highly important to remember throughout my career that one of my goals will be to always be consumer oriented,” said Kursten Lizarraga, a Marketing major from Port Orange.“The consumer is who will keep me in business and who will spread my product to their peers.”

Quest to Vietnam, Hong Kong unforgettable adventure

Exotic business experiences and lasting lessons of cultures from which they are born offer unique perspectives for Executive MBA students who travel halfway around the world to engage in global markets. Vietnam, Ireland, Hong Kong and Dubai have all been exciting classrooms without walls for these graduate students. And, in June, South Africa will be added to the list as students leap to a new continent for the School of Business Administration.

EMBA students go where no SU cohert has ever been in Vietnam's Mekong Delta

The quest to Vietnam and Hong Kong last summer was an unforgettable adventure and success for the 18 students of the EMBA Program’s Cohort 7, who broadened and enriched their business careers and perspectives. “Sitting in the United States in an air-conditioned classroom is totally different from being embedded in the culture and seeing how things work first-hand,” said Kelly Glassburn of Windermere. “The trip helped close the loop on many concepts that we’ve been learning over the past year.”

Economic perspectives changed, sometimes radically, when students entered conference rooms to meet with leaders of industries like Nike, Danone, Geely (China’s largest auto manufacturer), ACCION International (the microfinance giant) and Li & Fung Limited, a 104-year-old, $12 billion dollar trade group.

Alicia Matheson looks back at Kelly Glassburn as they descent a Vietnam War combat cave.

Economic perspectives also changed, sometimes even more radically, outside corporate offices
where students bartered with street vendors for purses, watches, jewelry and souvenirs. “Bartering in the markets was a great illustration of real-life economics,” said Darcy Clark, of Celebration, who like Glassburn is a Disney manager. Other students, too, said impromptu bartering offered basic insight into how business is conducted within cultural context. That context was explored at historic sites, restaurants, nightclubs and other cultural opportunities.

In Hong Kong, one of the most densely populated areas of the world and an international finance center, the group saw Victoria Peak’s panoramic views, its monastery, Hong Kong Disneyland and large markets as they traveled by train, sampan, cable car, boat, funicular and bus. Students compared the city of 7 million to New York.

Chuck Rivas sports a Stetson backpack in the Vietnam jungle

Although the population is comparable, Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon) in Vietnam was much different and spread over a much larger area than compact Hong Kong. Students met with numerous industry leaders in Ho Chi Minh City, but also made forays into the countryside to explore Viet Cong tunnels from the wars for independence, ride horse-drawn carts through rural villages, navigate narrow boats through the Mekong Delta and partake of uncommon foods such as whole elephant fish on a stick, unusual fruits and coconut candy made at a family business as students watched.

Non-business highlights were many, including an afternoon of community service in a Buddhist monastery and 90-minute Vietnamese massages of tea, reflexology, hot stones and a masseuse walking on students’ backs. Some students opted for the relaxing $15 experience every night.

The cohort visited nine businesses – four in Vietnam and five in Hong Kong – to gain a deeper appreciation of a common generic classroom phrase: “global business.” “Seeing those businesses while immersed in the cultures helped me appreciate what they were doing,” said Walter Kurlin, a business program facilitator for Disney whose hometown is Fort Lauderdale. “The cultural encounters were integral in wrapping that educational and cultural experience together.”

The cultural context put “understanding and respect” into the vast differences in business and life in America, said Terrence Tasior, a Disney finance manager. China’s economic importance was obvious. “It was evident with all the companies we visited,” he said. “No matter the question or topic, it almost always circled back to China.”

“Spending time with business leaders in a variety of industries was extremely valuable,” said Penny Miller of Clermont, a Human Resources partner for Disney. “The ability to ask questions about business opportunities and challenges and discover new points of view” was important to her.

“In the U.S. we tend to be very ethnocentric – our way is the right way,” said Glassburn, “but that’s an opinion hard to stand behind when you are embedded in a country, seeing a successful operation being conducted so differently than how it’s done back in the U.S.”

“We have to think of things differently,” said Norbert Dean of Mobile, Ala., a director of strategic sourcing at Disney World. “The best leaders will have to break down borders, not keep them up.”

The 19-month EMBA program is based at Stetson’s Center at Celebration and contains an international trip. Past cohorts visited Ireland, the Czech Republic and Dubai, but last summer’s trip was the first to include two countries. In South Africa this summer, Cohort 8′s itinerary includes mining, investments, wineries, manufacturing and marketing among business interests on the 11-day trip to Johannesburg and Cape Town.

Daniels named Assoc. VP of Human Resources

Stetson University has named Shelia M. Daniels, associate dean of Human Resources at Indian River State College in Fort Pierce, as its new associate vice president for Human Resources, effective in mid-March.
Daniels will provide strategic human resources leadership for Stetson’s two campuses and two satellite centers as part of the university’s strategic planning goal to “Be a Great Place to Work.” She will provide senior leadership of the human resources function and supervise a staff of nine distributed in two locations. Her areas of responsibility include benefits, compensation system, employee relations, recruitment and retention, payroll, and talent management, training and development.
“Given Shelia’s experience, credentials, and personal style, I am very excited about the leadership she will bring to the university-wide discussion about compensation philosophy as this will serve as a foundation for creating systems and reward structures to continue to move Stetson forward,” said Robert Huth, Stetson vice president for Business and chief financial officer. “Stetson will benefit greatly from her professionalism and understanding of all facets of human resources, a conclusion reached by all who participated in the search process.”
Daniels has served as associate dean of Human Resources at Indian River State, a public institution with five campus locations across four counties, since 2003. Previous positions include director of Human Resources at Akerman Senterfitt in Orlando, vice president of the HR Division for SunTrust Bank in Miami, and human resources administrator for the School Board of Broward County.
She earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and a master’s in public administration from Florida Atlantic University. Her professional certifications include Senior Professional in Human Resources, Florida Supreme Court Certified Circuit Mediator, and Meyers-Briggs Type Indicator Certified Practitioner.
Daniels received the College and University Professional Association-HR 2007 National Award for Best Practices in Human Resources, the CUPA-HR 2007 Southern Region Award for Best Practices in Human Resources and a certificate of appreciation from the Florida Community College Equity Commission for diversity initiatives. She is a member of the Society of Human Resource Management and the Florida Colleges Human Resource Council (chair 2007-2008). She has also served on many local board memberships.
“I am extremely happy and honored to have been given this opportunity to become an active contributor to the future of Stetson University,” Daniels said. “The pride I saw exhibited in the institution’s rich history combines with enthusiasm and synergy across the institution for President Wendy Libby’s vision and initiatives going forward. There was a sense of vibrancy that impressed me.
“I’m eager to share in that energy and to partner with the administration, faculty and staff in continuing to make Stetson not only a great place for students pursuing their educations, but also as a great place to work as we fulfill that mission,” she said. “I truly look forward to getting to know my new colleagues at the university and to making a positive difference in their daily work life, experiences and benefits.”

Stetson Mascot in action

Latest Episode of Stetson University Events Watch

Monday, February 13, 2012

Medieval England Program

Goind Global - Istanbul and Budapest

Two iconic hubs of global trade – Istanbul and Budapest – will be the focus of Executive MBA students’ international experience this summer.The mere name of Istanbul conjures exotic visions of a global crossroads at the edge of Europe and Asia, set astride ancient trade routes that influence economic and political realms far beyond Turkey.
Budapest also stands astride ancient trade routes on the historic Danube River and, as the capital of Hungary and economic hub of Central Europe, also influences life far beyond its borders.
Hungary’s Parliament in Budapest
Danube River reflects the lights of Hungary’s Parliament in Budapest.

Those two iconic cities will be the focus of this year’s international experience for Cohort 9 of the School of Business’ Executive MBA Program. The trip by EMBA’s Cohort 9 will be the first time the Business School has sent a group of students into Central Europe to study business and culture, according to Wendy Lowe, EMBA coordinator. Other EMBA cohorts have visited businesses and landmarks in South Africa, China, Vietnam, the United Arab Emirates and other countries.
“If previous trips are any indication, the cohort will return to the classroom with a clear understanding of the impact of our global economy and the importance of appreciating the differences in international business practices,” Lowe said.
The 25 students will get inside perspectives on international practices when they visit with key leaders of business and industry in Istanbul and Budapest. The Hungarian National Bank, Mercedes-Benz Turk, Goodyear, Vodaphone, Bosch, Turk Telekom, Accenture and other multinational companies are among those being considered for visits.
“I’m most anxious to meet with the different businesses and enhance my global perspective of our economy,” said EMBA student Michael Gieseking of Orlando, operations manager at Disney World.
“I cannot even begin to convey my excitement,” says EMBA student Lindsay Swantek of Winter Garden, a Disney communications associate. “I already know that our excursion to Istanbul and Budapest will be an invaluable life experience, both professionally and personally. I’m eagerly counting down the days.”
The international element of the EMBA Program focuses on managerial issues such as cultural perceptions, international financial systems, global marketing, human resource concerns and organizational structure.
Students contribute to the selection of the destinations based on numerous factors including education opportunities, size and diversity of the economy, and culture. Cohort 9 wanted to visit a region that other cohorts had not visited and also one that required relatively less travel time, allowing more time at the destinations, Lowe said.
For the first time since the EMBA Program began in 2003, students’ international trip will take place in tandem with an international trip for EMBA alumni, said Lowe. The trip will have a similar itinerary and some overlapping activities, but will focus on the cultural aspects of the destinations rather than business practices.

Family Enterprise Conference goes West

Drawn by high-caliber expertise offered by trustworthy sources, more than 100 representatives of family businesses traveled to San Francisco to learn from national experts and one another.
David Shaw
David Shaw, Family Business Magazine

Some of western America’s oldest and largest family businesses sent owners, managers and advisors to the first west coast Transitions Conference produced by the School of Business Administration’s Family Enterprise Center and by Family Business Magazine.
Other Transition conferences have been in Orlando and all have been successful. A third Orlando conference is planned for the spring, and backers are already talking about a second California conference – this time in the Los Angeles area.
“We are very excited to see Transitions grow into two annual events serving the unique information needs of multigenerational family enterprises,” said David Shaw, Family Business Magazine publishing director.
Greg McCann
Greg McCann, Stetson University

“Having the Transitions Conference on each coast allows us to put greater emphasis on the geographic and cultural uniqueness of the family enterprises in both areas,” said Greg McCann, director and founder of the Family Enterprise Center.
Family businesses as old as eight generations were among conferees sent by companies engaged in mining, ranching, fruit groves, entertainment, real estate, manufacturing and other operations. Annual income ranged into the billions, payroll ranged to many thousands of employees, but there were numerous smaller family businesses, too.
“It was one of the best private company knowledge exchanges I have had the pleasure of participating in during my 16-plus years in the industry,” said Amy O’Brien, a marketing and business development director for PwC.
“Finally, a conference for business owners, not just operators and/or managers,” said Katherine Hayes of HRK Inc., a fifth-generation family business member.
Katherine R.D. Hayes and Alyssa Thompson
Listening to conference comments are Katherine R.D. Hayes, HRK Trust Col, St. Paul, Minn., and Alyssa Thompson, a Stetson Family Enterprise major of Mims.

The president of Texas’s massive King Ranch attended, as did shareholders of Herschend Family Entertainment, the world’s largest family-owned theme park company. Owners of Spain’s third-largest dairy attended, as did owners of the fourth-largest winery in the United States.
Almost 80 percent of attendees rated the conference as “excellent.” Speakers were “world class.” Conference subjects were tailored to conferees’ needs and included succession planning, training the next generation and marrying into a family business.
“The Transitions West Conference is further validation of the national platform we have created for family enterprises in the U.S. and internationally to come together in a learning community and learn from peers, leading experts, and the next generation,” said McCann.
Charlotte Lampe, Ted Zacks, and Kirby Rosplock
Charlotte Lampe, Port Blakely Companies, (center) talks to Ted Zacks, co-owner, director and CEO of Green Brier Holdings, in British Columbia as Kirby Rosplock listens. She’s director of research and development at GenSpring Family offices.

Each conference builds toward the next, said Peter Begalla, adjunct business professor and FEC program manager.
“We’ll continue to build on the success of the Transitions Conference in April in Orlando,” said Begalla. “We’re reaching out to Florida family companies with or without Stetson ties to attend.”
Stetson’s Family Enterprise Center was founded in 1998 and has helped re-define the field of family business. The nation’s first undergraduate major in the field was established here.
Family Business Magazine targets multigenerational family businesses in North America and is the only one of its kind. It’s a family business run for family businesses. The conference is a chance for the magazine to “come to life,” according to Shaw.
Corporate partners who were top sponsors of the conference included PwC, Bessemer Trust, GenSpring Family Offices and Bernstein Global Wealth Management.

Three faculty promoted to rank of professor

Three Stetson University faculty members – Dr. Jamil Khader, English; Dr. Lloyd Linney, voice; and Dr. Carolyn Young Nicholson, marketing – have been promoted to the rank of professor, effective in August.
Dr. Jamil Khader, College of Arts & Sciences: A Palestinian from Israel, Khader completed his Ph.D. in English Literature at Pennsylvania State University, and taught for two years at Bilkent University in Ankara, Turkey, before joining the English Department at Stetson in August 2000. His teaching and research focus on transnationalism, especially the political and aesthetic dimensions underpinning the ethics of cross-cultural communication, human rights and globalization. In May, he received a Hand Award for Research, Creative and Professional Activity; Stetson’s Hand Awards were established by alumna and Trustee Dolly Hand and her husband, Homer, to honor faculty members who are not only dedicated teachers but who also have notable achievements in scholarship or creative work in their areas of expertise and who have made a difference in their local or larger communities.
From left, Dr. Lloyd Linney, Dr. Jamil Khader and Dr. Carolyn Nicholson
Khader is the author of Cartographies of Transnationalism in Postcolonial Feminisms: Geography, Culture, Identity, Politics (Lexington Books, forthcoming), and is the co-editor, with Molly Rothenberg, of a collection of essays on the Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Žižek, titled, Žižek Now: Current Perspectives in Žižek Studies (Polity Press, forthcoming). His publications have appeared in various national and international literary journals, including Ariel, Feminist Studies, College Literature, MELUS, The Journal of the Fantastic in the Arts, The Journal of Postcolonial Writing, Children’s Literature, and other collections.
As co-chair of Stetson’s Diversity Council, Khader has done significant work to put Stetson’s values into practice in the community, raising awareness of diversity issues and global events. He organized panel discussions related to Islamophobia, the Egyptian revolution and the crisis in political civility, and pioneered the Veiled-for-a-Day project – in which students of all faiths were invited to wear a Muslim hijab for a short time – to inspire dialogue on touchy topics.
Dr. Lloyd Linney, School of Music: A soprano, Linney has been a member of Stetson’s music faculty since 1984. Currently she is the coordinator of applied voice and teaches studio voice, French diction and aural training. Her voice students have gone on to graduate programs, performing careers and teaching positions in university and grade school music programs. Linney has led two Stetson trips to Italy as part of a course in Italian culture and has taught a course in European culture in the Stetson School of Business Administration’s summer program in Innsbruck, Austria.
Linney has performed in concerts, operas and oratorios in Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas, as well as in Italy and the Virgin Islands. On the operatic stage, she has portrayed Donna Anna (Don Giovanni), the Queen of the Night (The Magic Flute), Fiordiligi (Cosi fan tutte), Rosalinda (Die Fledermaus), both the Countess and Susanna (The Marriage of Figaro), Blonde (The Abduction from the Seraglio) and the title role in Martha. Her oratorio credits include Mozart’s Requiem, Handel’s Jephtha and Messiah, Beethoven’s Christ on the Mount of Olives, Puccini’s Gloria, and Bach’s Passion According to St. John.
A native of Georgia, Linney is a graduate of Furman University and holds the M.M. and D.M. degrees in vocal performance from Florida State University. From 1994 to 2001, she did additional vocal work with Richard Miller of the Oberlin College Conservatory of Music and, since 2005, has worked with Louise McClelland Urban, professor emeritus, University of Maryland. Before coming to Stetson, she taught at Rollins College, the University of Central Florida, Seminole Community College and Valencia Community College.
Dr. Carolyn Young Nicholson, School of Business Administration: A faculty member at Stetson since 2000, Nicholson holds the Dennis C. McNamara, Sr. Chair in Marketing. She has been chair of the Marketing Department for four years; this summer, she will assume the post of associate dean of the School of Business Administration. She is heavily involved in the business school’s accreditation and assurance of learning processes.
Nicholson’s research interests include supply chain communication, web-based marketing for traditional brands, environmentally sustainable marketing and effective teaching techniques at the college level. Her research has been published in a number of national and international journals, including International Journal of Research in Marketing, Journal of Retailing, Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, and Marketing Education Review, among others. She also has presented her research at a number of national and international conferences.
She has won Teacher of the Year in the School of Business Administration twice since her arrival at Stetson University. Nicholson earned her Ph.D. in marketing from Virginia Tech, her M.A. in communication from University of Georgia, and her B.S. in management and communication from Wingate University.

SUrviving domestic violence

Leslie Morgan Steiner seemed to have it all: a Harvard diploma, a glamorous job and a handsome husband. But she was hiding a secret. Her husband beat her regularly and nearly killed her.
On Thursday, Feb. 23, Steiner will share her story of surviving domestic violence at Stetson University. The event, at 7 p.m., is open to the public and will be held in the Rinker Field House inside the Hollis Center, 602 N. Bert Fish Drive, DeLand.
The Domestic Violence Awareness program is sponsored by Stetson’s Psi Chi honor society for psychology, the Alpha Chi Omega sorority, the Gender Studies program and the Department of Housing and Residential Life. Admission is free, but donations will be accepted to benefit The House Next Door, a DeLand-based non-profit organization specializing in family-based programs and individual and group counseling.
Today, Steiner is a successful writer, blogger and editor who lives in Washington, D.C., with her family and travels the nation sharing her story. Her memoir about surviving domestic violence, Crazy Love, is a New York Times bestseller, People Pick, and Book of the Week for The Week magazine.
She is the editor of the critically-acclaimed anthology Mommy Wars: Stay-at-Home and Career Moms Face Off on Their Choices, Their Lives, Their Families (Random House 2006) a frank, surprising, and refreshing look at American motherhood from 26 different perspectives. From 2006-2008 she wrote more than 500 columns for the Washington Post’s popular daily online work/​family column, “On Balance.”
She currently writes the weekly column, “Two Cents on Modern Motherhood,” for Modern Mom and Mommy Track’d: Managing the Chaos of Modern Motherhood.
In addition to years as a nonfiction magazine writer and editor, Steiner has an MBA degree in marketing from the Wharton School of Business. She launched Splenda Brand Sweetener throughout Australia, the Mid-East and Latin America for Johnson & Johnson, the world’s largest consumer healthcare company. She returned to her hometown of Washington, D.C., in 2001 to become general manager of the Washington Post Magazine, a position she held for five years.
Over the years, she has turned her professional experience into advocacy for abused women as a spokeswoman at The Harriet Tubman Center inMinneapolis.
More information about Steiner can be found at:
For more information about the Feb. 23 event at Stetson, contact ChelseaLeNoble at or Shannon Martin at

Benefit Concert

Come support the Community School of the Arts Outreach Program this Saturday at 7:30 p.m. in Lee Chapel! The concert will feature Stetson Professor Dr. Michael Rickman as well as Stetson students and participants in the program. Following the recital there will be a reception in Presser, room 132. Light refreshments will be served.
The Community School of the Arts Outreach Program raises funds for local underprivileged students to take music lessons through Stetson’s very own community school. This provides invaluable experience and learning enrichment to teenagers and adolescents who would not otherwise be able to participate in these activities.
Cultural Credit provided. The event is FREE but donations are greatly appreciated.