Dean’s Message – Greg Hanifee, Assistant Dean of Executive Programs
Dear EMBA Alums,
Recently, we gained additional recognition from the world of business school program rankings, as US News and World Report released their 2012 EMBA rankings, and for the first time the Smith School of Business appeared in their list at #23! Significantly, we are the only program in the greater Washington, DC - Baltimore - Northern Virginia market to be ranked in the US News list of top 25 EMBA programs, and with this recognition we are the only school in the region to be ranked by all of the major ranking services.
The EMBA rankings from US News to a large extent reflect the opinions of other business school EMBA directors and deans, so it's with great gratitude that I thank everyone associated with the program for "Speaking up for Smith". Special thanks go to Rob Sheehan, Joyce Russell, Jeff Kudisch and Amanda Lavino for representing the program so well to the EMBA community across the country - their presence and presentations at EMBA Council meetings has raised the awareness of the quality of the students, and the curriculum, here at Smith.
In this issue:
On April 17th, Smith hosted the 4th Annual Spring EMBA Happy Hour. Originally designed to bring content and life long learning opportunities to you our alums and current students, the event also offers a valuable opportunity for your friends and colleagues to learn more about Smith’s EMBA.
More than 80 attendees heard Dr. Joyce E.A. Russell (newly named Vice Dean replacing current Vice Dean Hugh Courtney) moderate a panel of alums focusing on the challenges and opportunities the millennial generation brings to the work force with a special interest the anticipated talent gap when baby boomers retire. Sue Adams (Cohort 1) with the Department of Labor, Liam Brown (Cohort 3) with Marriott International, Karen Reinhardt (Cohort 10) with Lockheed Martin and Heath Campbell (Current EMBA 11) with BB&T offered insights on leveraging the drive and technological savvy of millenials while helping them assimilate to a diverse workforce and provide motivation and leadership opportunities.
The Spring Happy Hour has become the largest EMBA event of the year. With 30% alums, 30% current students, 30% prospective students and 10% faculty and staff, the conversations and networking opportunities were both informative and fun.
April 16th marked the official start of the recruiting cycle for the next EMBA cohort beginning in January 2013. Application numbers are steady and improving overall as the program continues to gain international recognition and strong rankings in the various media.
From this point on, we will be accepting application on a rolling basis. Feel free to contact and/or pass along Shelbi Brookshire’s information (email@example.com or 240-464-8597) should any of your friends or colleagues be interested in learning more. Shelbi is always happy to meet you and a potential future member of the Smith EMBA community for lunch/coffee.
As you know, the Smith EMBA program is continually trying to find ways to improve the learning experience of our students. Our faculty members are always finding ways to make our courses reflect changes and developments in the courses they teach. Professor Progyan Basu, who serves as a Cohort Director and also teaches two core courses in Financial and Managerial Accounting in the EMBA program, recently met with a number of EMBA 09 alumni to seek their input on the EMBA accounting courses. The alumni are now engaged to lend their expertise and bring their experiences of using accounting techniques in strategic planning and process improvement decisions in their organizations to the EMBA classroom. Specifically, Kim Gifford, Executive Director/CEO, American Society of Transplant Surgeons, and Pete Plotas, Director Channels & Partners at GXS, Inc. will return to Professor Basu’s Managerial Accounting course this summer for EMBA 12 as guest lecturers. Kim will discuss implementation of an Activity Cost System at the American Society of Transplant Surgeons, and Pete will share his professional experience of using financial and related information in evaluation of corporate lines of business.
We sincerely thank the following EMBA 09 alumni for taking valuable time to ‘give
back’ to Smith their expertise and appreciate their help in our goals of continual
program improvement in the EMBA program:
Remember when you began your EMBA program? For some, that was less than a year ago while for others it was almost 10 years. It does not take a stretch of your memory to remember the questions you asked yourself about ROI, work/life/school balance, impact on your career, etc. Having someone to leverage as a resource would have made a tremendous impact on your stress level. Charles “Chuck” Kovatch from Cohort 10 having recently graduated in July 2011, felt exactly this way. It was for this reason he reached out to the EMBA alumni contact he has with both his cohort and via the many events he has attended to create a pool of informal mentors for the most recent cohort – EMBA 13.
If you are interested in being an informal mentor for the incoming cohort, please let Shelbi Brookshire know at firstname.lastname@example.org or 240-464-8597.
This spring, Pete Plotas, Cohort 9, and his wife Alison launched the BE GREAT Foundation (a 501(c)(3) public charity) dedicated to their son Alexander James Plotas who died on September 21, 2011 at 13 months of age due to respiratory complications from a severe form of immune deficiency after a successful bone marrow transplant. The purpose of BE GREAT is to improve the lives and medical outcomes of children with immune deficiency, which affects tens of thousands of children and deprives them of their healthy tomorrows. The BE GREAT Foundation enables advancements in curative treatments for children with immune deficiency by supporting improvements in bone marrow transplantation, medical equipment and educational programs for parents. Join Pete and other EMBA alumni and their families on Saturday, May 19 for the Seek and Find Dr. Bear Family Walk, in support of Children's National Medical Center. It is a one mile “at your own pace” family charity walk on the Rockville Millennium Trail to find Dr. Bear and other surprises hiding on the trail. Visit www.begreatfoundation.org for details.
Check out the Smith School's new Certificate in Cybersecurity Leadership which we will launch in the fall. In just one semester, you can supplement cutting edge insights in cybersecurity technology with hands-on learning in systems thinking and design, ICT supply chain risk management and federal IT acquisition. Uniquely, this intensive course, offered at several locations in DC and Maryland, offers cyber experts the chance to step away from the computer screen and develop enterprise-wide leadership skills that will allow them to contribute to their organizations as strategic leaders. Faculty who will deliver this course include Dr. Joe Bailey, Dr. Sandor Boyson and SAIC CTO Hart Rossman. This Certificate from Maryland's flagship university can be used to kickstart a Masters' in Cybersecurity Engineering, or a MS in Information Systems at College Park. Download the Cybersecurity Leadership brochure here.
When Luke McCormack joined the second Smith Executive MBA cohort in 2004, he was with Customs and Border Protection as Director of Infrastructure Services. 8 years later on February 3, 2012, the Department of Justice announced Luke J. McCormack as their new Chief Information Officer.
Luke’s journey to the DOJ comes after more than 20 years of service in the federal government. In 2005, the same year he completed his EMBA, Luke moved from Customs and Border Protection to ICE – Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Before ICE, he held several senior management positions, including those in the legacy U.S. Customs and in the current U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Luke also gained diverse experience in the private sector with MCI, Ford Aerospace and smaller minority-owned firms.
Luke's ability to spot true talent and artful negotiation skills, which where perfected in Dr. Joyce Russell's class, led him to persuade two of his cohort members to bring their consulting expertise to ICE. In addition, he has been know to serve as mentor to full-time Smith Alums within the Department of Homeland Security. He is consistently giving his time and talent back to the Smith School via conducting mock interviews, returning for orientation activities and recruiting/hiring students.
Congratulations to Luke McCormack from the Smith EMBA Community!!
Summer Cohort Lunches – We will again host alumni cohort lunches in May and June. Look out for an email from Shelbi Brookshire with dates, times and locations.
May 4th - ThoughtLeadership@Smith - Trust and Influence: Who Follows Whom? With Dr. William Rand. Register at www.smithconnector.com/balt3.
May 4th - The Smith School Business Summit: Innovative Strategies for an Uncertain
September 28th & 29th – EMBA Alumni Gettysburg Trip
Joanne Ferchland-Parella, EMBA 4, accepted the position of Associate Vice President of University Development and Secretary, The Campanile Foundation at San Diego State University
Lauren Good, EMBA 10, recently joined MEDA Associates in the role of Senior Consultant/Project Manager. A Canada-based NGO, MEDA delivers market-driven economic development programs that improve the livelihoods of millions of people living in poverty around the world. In his role, Lauren will be leading development projects and partnerships related to rural agriculture, finance, and value chain development, primarily in sub-Saharan Africa. When not travelling, Lauren will work from the MEDA office in Bethesda, Maryland. http://meda.org
André Johnson, EMBA 11, recently joined accepted the role as a Manager with KPMG. He is leading an Enterprise Architecture project supporting a Department of Defense client. Andre’s responsibilities include quantitative and qualitative research and analysis driving improvement in IT performance and transformation as well as delivering strategic business, information and technology service architectures
Johanna Polsenberg, EMBA 6, has taken an exciting role with The Wildlife Conservation Society as the Congo Basin Coast Program Manager. She brings an extensive background in environmental and energy policy to her role coordinating WCS’s marine conservation science along the coasts of Gabon, Congo and Equatorial Guinea as well as their work with partners across the Gulf of Guinea.
Marty Sullivan, EMBA 10, is the President of VRIAN Consulting and a graduate of the Smith School of Business’ EMBA program. Marty is maintaining his connection to Smith by teaching negotiations to graduate students in the MBA and MS programs. The course, Competitive and Collaborative Negotiations, is a highly experiential offering that utilizes lectures to expose the students to negotiating best-practices, as well as, skill-building exercises and debriefings to increase students’ self-confidence in negotiating. The goal of the course is to improve the students’ analytical skills, interpersonal skills, persuasive abilities and effectiveness at achieving integrative solutions to individual, team and organizational challenges.
Savoy magazine recently voted Donta Wilson, EMBA 2, among the Top 100 Most Influential Blacks in Corporate America.
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