Fox School News & Releases

Fox School student swings for the fences in her role with Phillies

Rebecca Maziarz

Rebecca Maziarz

Fox School of Business student Rebecca Maziarz has her eye on the ball.

As the newest recruit to the Philadelphia Phillies’ Ballgirls team, Maziarz is stepping up to the plate as one of 24 young women entrusted with scoping out foul balls during Phillies games in the 2015 season. She’ll also serve as a team ambassador in public appearances.

A junior Marketing major and minor in Management Information Systems (MIS) from Bucks County, Pa., Maziarz said she’s wanted to join the Phillies Ballgirls since high school. When she heard in October that the Major League Baseball team was recruiting for the upcoming season, she jumped at the opportunity to move from the bleachers to the field.

“I play intramural softball at Temple,” Maziarz said. “I’ve always been a big fan of baseball, specifically the Phillies. I’ve always loved the atmosphere at the ballpark.”

Showing off the hitting and fielding skills she honed in a four-year high school varsity softball playing career, Maziarz stood out among the 70 girls vying for a position. Coupling her ability with her interpersonal skills and warm personality, Maziarz was chosen as one of 13 rookies with the Phillies Ballgirls.

Maziarz will shadow one of 11 veteran Phillies Ballgirls for the first four games before being cleared for duty. She said the other Phillies Ballgirls take their responsibilities seriously and understand how one wrong move could impact the game.

“You have to be athletic and agile to field the ball cleanly,” Maziarz said. “You don’t want to pick up a fair ball. You have to be constantly paying attention.”

The Phillies Ballgirls are the face of the team and make 150 off-field appearances, including TV and radio interviews, school visits and charity events. Maziarz volunteered at the Ronald McDonald House Charity phone bank while the Phillies were in spring training. She will also aid the Phillies’ sustainability effort during the team’s Red Goes Green promotion April 22.

“The Ballgirls do so much more than just participate in the games,” Maziarz said. “They’re really active in the community and I love that.”

Though the Phillies Ballgirls commit to approximately 20 hours during game weeks, Maziarz remains dedicated to her schoolwork. Drawn to the Fox School for its reputation, Maziarz found her niche as a Marketing major. She’s taking 18 credits of coursework in the Spring 2015 semester, and she’s a member of the American Marketing Association student professional organization. She said her eventual goal is to break into the sports marketing industry.

“It’s been a great experience in Fox,” said Maziarz, who will remain with the Phillies Ballgirls through the 2016 season. “The courses are very challenging, but it helps keep me focused.”

Marziarz, one of the youngest Phillies Ballgirls, believes a great advantage of her position with the team is the potential to influence young girls.

“I’ve set goals for myself and I think young girls can learn from that,” the 21-year-old said. “It’s important for young girls to set goals and go after them because they can achieve them.”

Fox School News & Releases

Fox Online MBA ranks No. 6 globally in QS TopMBA report

The Online MBA program at Temple University’s Fox School of Business continues to receive acclaim.

In January, the Fox Online MBA received a No. 1 national ranking by U.S. News & World Report. Two months later, the program has been recognized as the sixth-best program in the world, according to QS TopMBA.

Fox’s program jumped six places, from No. 11 in QS TopMBA’s 2014 report to No. 6 in this year’s ranking, which was released March 26.

The QS TopMBA Distance/Online MBA ranking is said to be the first global ranking of distance and online MBA programs. The survey, which is primarily reputation-based, collects feedback from employers of the online MBA students they recruit. QS uses 18 metrics to arrive at its rankings, including: AACSB accreditation; work experience; completion rate; diversity; faculty-to-student ratio; and average GMAT scores, among others.

“The Fox Online MBA connects cutting-edge technology and an accredited, high-impact curriculum with an internationally recognized faculty to foster a dynamic learning community,” said Fox School Dean M. Moshe Porat. “I am pleased that U.S. News & World Report has recognized our Online MBA program as the best in the country. Our Online and Digital Learning team continues to deliver the best advancements in technology to a quality, online-format education.”

“Both domestically and globally, the demand for a high-quality, comprehensive online business education is soaring, and I am proud that the Fox School continues to be recognized as a leader in this arena,” said Fox School Dean M. Moshe Porat. “Our Online and Digital Learning team continue to set the bar for innovation, accessibility and rigor in an online MBA program.”

In the Fox Online MBA program, which first launched in Fall 2009, students benefit from a flexible curriculum carousel with multiple entry points. The Fox School’s Online MBA program launches with a weeklong residency at Temple University’s Main Campus in Philadelphia. The residency features a leadership course, networking, team building, professional development and special events. Each subsequent online course is delivered one at a time over four weeks, and the program can be completed in as quickly as 20 months.

The program employs a flipped-classroom approach, a 24/7, on-demand format that allows students to learn content at their leisure and collaborate with their peers and professors through digital dialogue. Then, in an integrated, synchronous online classroom setting, they are able to put what they have learned into practice.

Fox School’s Video Vault, a collection of more than 1,400 academic videos produced by Fox faculty, is a vital resource of the program. The Video Vault features a searchable archive with HD-quality, mobile-friendly, transcribed videos that are engaging for the student.

To learn more about the Fox School’s Online MBA program, visit fox.temple.edu/omba.

Fox School News & Releases

Fox’s Society for Human Resource Management chapter wins regional case competition

Members of Fox School’s Society for Human Resource Management chapter deliver their presentation at the SHRM East Division Undergraduate Case Competition.

Members of Fox School’s Society for Human Resource Management chapter deliver their presentation at the SHRM East Division Undergraduate Case Competition.

Five students from the Fox School of Business elected for a non-traditional spring break. Their remote destination was a placid campus. Their beach was a third-floor conference room in Altar Hall.

And instead of vacation, they opted for preparation.

The group’s discipline paid off. Five members of Temple University’s Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) chapter comprised the team that won first place in the SHRM East Division Undergraduate Case Competition and Career Summit.

This marked the first time the Fox School had fielded a team for the regional case competition, which was held March 20-21 in Baltimore. Fox’s team included juniors Megan Rybak, Ryan Colomy, Connor McNamee and James Harootunian, and senior Nicole Bieri.

“We are extremely proud of this inaugural SHRM case competition student team, for preparing so diligently and then winning this prestigious competition,” said Dr. Deanna Geddes, Chair of Fox’s Human Resource Management department. “They are impressive ambassadors for our undergraduate HRM program.”

Fox’s SHRM team, one of 17 in the competition, received its case March 1, on the first day of Temple University’s spring break. The members were required to submit a two-page executive summary and the PowerPoint slides to their presentation only three days later, a deadline that significantly cut into their spring-break downtime.

“We spent the majority of our break in a conference room, pouring over the case information,” McNamee said.

“The case was a small non-profit hospital that was having challenges with its talent-development function,” Harootunian said. “We argued that there was a problem with who was responsible for overseeing employees’ long-term growth. While it’s important for the managers of each division to have a hand in it, we made a case that HR, the employees and the hospital should all factor into the process.”

Members of Fox School’s Society for Human Resource Management chapter celebrate their victory at the SHRM East Division Undergraduate Case Competition.

Members of Fox School’s Society for Human Resource Management chapter celebrate their victory at the SHRM East Division Undergraduate Case Competition.

Lacking case competition experience, the team delivered its presentation on four occasions at the Fox School in the days leading up to the summit. In doing so, the members hoped to elicit genuine questions from a fresh audience, in order to replicate the queries they might face from a judging panel.

In Baltimore, the Fox SHRM team made its 15-minute, first-round presentation March 21. The members were informed later that day that they had been selected as one of two teams to advance to the next day’s final round.

“Once we learned we were one of the finalists, to us, that felt like we won,” said Rybak, the team’s captain. “Making the final round was a bigger achievement than we had expected. We were new to the competition. I think that helped us remain calm in our second presentation, which was in front of a larger group and in a larger room.”

Each of the Fox SHRM team’s five members earned complimentary registration to the 2015 SHRM Annual Conference & Exposition, to be held June 28-July 1, in Las Vegas, Nev., as well as a $2,500 stipend to cover most of the team’s travel expenses for the Baltimore-based case competition.

More importantly, Fox’s SHRM team received sterling feedback from the final-round judges, who lauded the team’s use of metrics to support its analysis. Judges also cited impressive business communication skills, professionalism, and presentation fluidity. After the announcement of their win, a healthcare-industry professional approached the team seeking a future collaboration.

“One gentleman even gave us his business card and asked us if we could help his hospital make similar improvements to their HR practices,” Colomy said.

“Our excellent Temple educations showed and, at that moment, I was never more proud to represent the Fox School,” Bieri said. “We could not have done this without the support of the other Temple students who attended the conference, and our two advisors, Dr. Debra Casey and Dr. Andrea Lopez, who supported us the whole way.”

Temple’s nationally recognized SHRM chapter is one of 24 student-professional organizations at Fox. The group has been recognized previously as one of SHRM’s top-10 chapters nationally, and, in 2013-14, receives the national organization’s Outstanding Chapter Award.

The case championship is not the first notable distinction earned by the chapter, and it likely won’t be the last.

Fox School News & Releases

Fox School students fueling new food establishment at Temple

Rad Dish, based in the Ritter Hall Annex at Temple University, is a student-run, community-owned co-op that offers locally sourced food. (Photo by Allie Guerin)

Rad Dish, based in the Ritter Hall Annex at Temple University, is a student-run, community-owned co-op that offers locally sourced food. (Photo by Allie Guerin)

At Temple University’s Ritter Hall Annex, the elevator bay is abuzz with students and staff members talking about the building’s newest addition: Rad Dish Co-Op Café. The vegetarian, cash-only eatery has become a hotspot for foodies looking for locally sourced meals.

Keeping an eye on a midday lunch rush, Lauren Troop, Rad Dish co-founder and its head of outreach, said her involvement in the café inspired her transfer into the Fox School of Business.

“Through this project, I was able to see that you can use business to solve problems like these and be a leader in your community,” said Troop, a junior entrepreneurship major.

Troop and fellow Fox School student Trevor Southworth are among the Temple students who are behind the primary operations and day-to-day management of Rad Dish Co-Op Café.

Troop said she’s always been fascinated by eating habits and the sustainability of the slow-food movement, which promotes the use of a local ecosystem to support traditional meals. It wasn’t until Troop opened Rad Dish in January and started her courses at the Fox School in Fall 2014 that she saw how to turn her interests into a business.

“I took a class that explored innovation through different business plans and Rad Dish’s business plan, being a co-op, is so unique,” Troop said.

Utilizing skills gleaned from her Marketing and Human Resource courses, Troop said she began to problem-solve issues of promotion and business management while working to maintain the idea of opening a locally sourced restaurant at Temple.

Rad Dish Café, as a co-op, embraces a purely democratic leadership that allows all students equal voting rights, and invites students and community members to buy into the co-op for $25, which affords them a 10-percent discount on purchases and voting privileges in the co-op.

Among the committee leaders is Trevor Southworth, who not only supports Rad Dish’s cause, but also views the venture as an ideal application for the skills he’s learning in the Fox School.

“I’m in Cost Analysis right now and that’s everything I do for Rad Dish,” said Southworth, a sophomore accounting major at the Fox School.

Employees Elizabeth Eckley and Mariam Dembele dish out vegetarian fare at Rad Dish Café’s grand opening in February 2015. (Photo by Allie Guerin)

Employees Elizabeth Eckley and Mariam Dembele dish out vegetarian fare at Rad Dish Café’s grand opening in February 2015. (Photo by Allie Guerin)

Rad Dish is primarily funded by seed money provided by Temple University’s Office of Sustainability. Southworth, who heads Rad Dish’s finance committee, focuses on creating a financial plan that allows the restaurant to meet and exceed overhead costs and saving to pay back the seed funding within five years. Southworth and Troop also worked to launch an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign that raised $2,000. The idea came from alumna Rachel Voluck, FOX ’14, the former president of Fox School student professional organization Net Impact, a responsible business coalition.

Prior to its February soft opening, Rad Dish worked with the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute’s (IEI) Living Learning Community to plan the grand opening and formulate outreach programs. Troop also said she plans to work with Sustainable Marketing business students to pitch the co-op model, and hopes to resume a series of independent studies available through the Fox School to get students involved.

“This semester we hope to create those relationships and plan out more organized internships,” Troop said. “A big thing for us is collaboration between colleges.”

Troop and Southworth have also reached out to Dylan Baird, FOX ’13. The alumnus, who took second place at the IEI’s 2010 Be Your Own Boss Bowl, a university-wide business plan competition, launched Philly Foodworks, an aggregator for local farms to sell their crops locally. Rad Dish uses Baird’s community-sourced agriculture delivery service as a drop-off/pick-up zone for the café’s food stores. And the café’s breads and pastries are courtesy of Lauren Yaghoobian, FOX ’01, who launched Northeast Philadelphia-based Wildflour Bakery with her husband, Nishan, shortly after graduating.

“We would use Temple alumni over anyone else because they get so excited about it,” Southworth said. “It’s natural networking and I’ve learned a lot.”

Both Troop and Southworth look forward to continuing their business educations and applying their skills to Rad Dish’s everyday operation.

“I want to learn these news skills and have this business succeed,” Troop said. “I’m excited to continue collaboration between a variety of Temple schools and colleges.”

Fox School News & Releases

Fox researcher’s revolutionary study correlates scents with purchasing tendencies

Dr. Maureen Morrin

Dr. Maureen Morrin

Could a spicy cinnamon scent persuade you to buy a Lexus? A professor from the Fox School of Business thinks so.

Dr. Maureen Morrin, Professor of Marketing at the Fox School, and a collaborative research team found a definitive connection between warm scents, consumer preference for luxury (more expensive items), and an increase in overall spending.

“If there is a warm scent in the room, people perceive the room to be smaller, and more full of other people,” Morrin said, citing the research findings of she and her team. “As a result, they feel a little less socially powerful. In order to restore their feeling of power, they prefer premium or luxury brands.”

Morrin and her research colleagues (Dr. Adriana Madzharov of the Stevens Institute of Technology, and Dr. Lauren Block of Baruch College) published the findings of their scent-power correlation research in the Journal of Marketing in January 2015. Their research also received mention in Science Daily. The study is believed to be the first of its kind to examine how temperature-related associations with smell affect our spatial perceptions and sense of self-importance.

For her most-recent study, Morrin and her colleagues exposed test subjects to two identical retail environments, and then subtly manipulated the scent in each atmosphere to be either warm, like spicy cinnamon, or cool, like minty menthol. They found that consumers exposed to the warm scents felt less socially powerful, finding the room crowded and overwhelming. To assuage their insecurities, they not only purchased more goods, but showed a preference for luxury items assumed to increase one’s social status, Morrin said. Conversely, those participants in cool-scented environments showed no inclination toward or against the luxury items, and bought less overall.

“Cool scents tend to work in an opposite direction than warm scents in terms of their impact on how powerful you feel within a given environment,” Morrin said.

Morrin, whose research interests include sensory processing and consumer decision-making, has always been interested in pioneering studies regarding the correlation between scent and consumer behavior.

The idea of warm and cool scents emerges from learned associations between foods and scents that can influence our conscious perceptions. When one smells menthol, the association is immediately with mint, which to our taste buds is cool, Morrin said, while vanilla and cinnamon evoke opposite reactions.

Morrin’s study revealed that not only can scent prime our emotions, it actually alters our idea of ourselves in space. Morrin’s test subjects reported increased crowding in rooms with warmer scents when the population remained constant. Conversely, the shoppers in cool-scented rooms reported increased spatial perception and a reduced number of people in the room.

Should retailers take advantage of these findings, Morrin said the market for luxury goods can be targeted acutely.

“Retailers of luxury goods might consider how their store’s atmospherics impact shoppers’ spatial perceptions,” she said. “Aspects of the retail environment that elicit power-compensatory consumer responses might lead to a greater preference for and purchasing of luxury brands.”

Morrin said she hopes to continue her investigation, and is currently working with several doctoral students from the Fox School to investigate other ties between scent and consumer behavior. The next step, she said, could be determining how ambient scents, especially those outside of our conscious awareness, could influence our purchase choices.

Fox School News & Releases

One-day Conference at Fox Helps to Inspire Philadelphia’s Youngest Entrepreneurs

IEI executive director Ellen Weber addresses Philadelphia area high school students at the Youth Entrepreneurship Conference.

IEI executive director Ellen Weber addresses Philadelphia area high school students at the Youth Entrepreneurship Conference.

It’s never too early to embrace entrepreneurship.

That’s what nearly 100 Philadelphia high school students learned March 12, in gathering at Temple University’s Fox School of Business for the fourth-annual Youth Entrepreneurship Conference.

The collaboration between Temple University’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute (IEI) and Network for Teaching Entrepreneurs (NFTE) made for a successful event, providing NFTE students the opportunity to meet business educators, leaders and mentors who ignited their entrepreneurial mindset. Participating Philadelphia high schools in the one-day conference included Boys Latin Charter School, Esperanza Charter School, Franklin Learning Center and Lincoln High School.

Private sector leader Jeff Brown, President and CEO of Brown’s Super Stores, served as the event’s keynote speaker. Brown, who also operates 11 Philadelphia-area ShopRite supermarkets, shared how he has utilized entrepreneurial thinking to operate supermarkets successfully. Hiring local residents, incorporating healthcare services and offering financial services not previously available, he said, have impacted the surrounding neighborhoods.

Staff and faculty from the NFTE and Temple’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute recently held their fourth-annual Youth Entrepreneurship Conference.

Staff and faculty from the NFTE and Temple’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute recently held their fourth-annual Youth Entrepreneurship Conference.

Sylvia McKinney, Executive Director of NFTE, and Tyra Ford, IEI Director of Operations and Strategic Marketing Initiatives, opened the conference with welcoming remarks.

“It may not happen in the next 12 months. It might happen five years from now,” McKinney said, “but the entrepreneurial mindset we’re developing with these students is going to go with them for a lifetime.”

Two faculty members from the Fox School – IEI Managing Director Rob McNamee and IEI Executive Director Ellen Weber – led presentation workshops and interactive activities to share their insights on becoming successful entrepreneurs. Additionally, David Kaiser, the Director of Undergraduate Enrollment Management at the Fox School, offered helpful tips on getting into the college of your dreams.

“It was great to see how engaged and energized the students were in learning about the different ways to innovate,” Weber said. “Students learned how to create experiments to test assumptions that are core to their business models, using the hypothetical Onion Goggles Company.”

According to the participating high school students, the takeaways from the event varied.

“Innovation is key,” said Jose Asencio, a student from the Franklin Learning Center. “Innovation helps express creativity and helps build and maintain relationships.”

“If you work hard enough, you can be anything you want in life,” said Shadeed Savage, another student from the Franklin Learning Center. “I learned from the instructors that not everybody started out at the top. Many people have to find their way on their own terms.”

Founded in New York City in 1987 by Steve Mariotti, a former entrepreneur turned high school math teacher in South Bronx, N.Y., NFTE began as a program to prevent dropouts and improve academic performance among students who were at risk of failing or quitting school. NFTE inspires young people from low-income communities to stay in school, recognize business opportunities and plan successful futures. Visit www.nfte.com for more information.

The mission of the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute is to proactively promote the entrepreneurial spirit throughout all 17 schools and colleges of Temple University. The IEI’s highly skilled staff and faculty provide consulting services to project groups and new ventures while developing and maintaining the IEI’s rich offerings of programs and relationships. The IEI offers many years of experience in new ventures launched and consulting, extensive networks and boundless enthusiasm for experiential learning.

Click here to learn more about IEI.

Fox School News & Releases

Fox Executive DBA student receives business leadership award

Diana Kyser

Diana Kyser

Diana Kyser’s management style involves intricately fitting together a company’s puzzle pieces. Sometimes, a few pieces are missing. In most cases, the pieces are there and simply need to be arranged.

It’s a skill Kyser said she has always possessed.

“In our Navigating the Global Marketplace class, Professor (Ram) Mudambi talks about orchestrators – the kinds of people who can take a product that’s already in place and improve upon it,” Kyser said. “Professionally, that’s how I see myself. I’m a builder, a fixer.”

Kyser is a doctoral candidate in the inaugural cohort of the Executive Doctorate of Business Administration program at the Fox School of Business.

She’s also one of the leading businesswomen in New Jersey.

NJBIZ has named Kyser one of its Best 50 Women in Business for 2015.  The weekly business journal selects women who reside or maintain employment in New Jersey, and must hold a senior management position within their organization. Honorees are either self-nominated or nominated by others. (Click here for NJBIZ’s 2015 honorees.)

“This is the 10th-annual award for NJBIZ. I’ve been nominated before, but I’d never been selected, so it’s rewarding,” said Kyser, of Summit, N.J.

Kyser’s professional background is rich with leadership experience. She’s the founding partner of COO on Demand, assisting companies in tailoring their execution strategies and formalizing their operations to scale for continued growth. Kyser’s company, which was founded nearly three years ago, offers operational experts to handle bookkeeping, human resources, management communications, business strategizing, and more for companies of all sizes.

“Maybe you’re a small business that needs help with the operations side, so the owner can focus on running the product side,” Kyser said. “Maybe you have a mid-size business that needs help refining its operations or strengthening its overall business plan. Maybe you manage a big business and you need a chief operations officer on an interim basis until you can hire one. These are some of the services we offer.

“Some of these companies could really benefit from high-level, experienced talent but, at the moment, can’t afford it. We think COO on Demand is quite revolutionary.”

Ultimately, Kyser said, she envisions bringing all of COO on Demand’s employees and offerings under one roof in a call-center-like setting, with management services being rendered by phone.

“It all comes back to reducing small-business failure rate, and it’s a goal that can be achieved,” she said.

A lifelong entrepreneur, Kyser in the early 1990s helped found C3i, which blossomed into a worldwide leader in technical support services for life sciences companies. She and two other C3i cofounders sold the $75 million venture funded global technology solutions firm within the last year to Telerx, a division of Merck.

Looking for another challenge, Kyser enrolled in Fox’s Executive DBA program, which launched in Fall 2014. She’s surrounded by others like her, who hold high-level, senior leadership positions as researchers, executives or entrepreneurs. The program, which is offered by only a handful of business schools nationwide, combines research with real-world experience.

“I can’t tell you how amazingly skilled the people in this program are,” Kyser said. “Their wealth of experience and knowledge is unbelievable. I’ve always loved academics and learning, and this program puts the business piece right there with the research and learning pieces.”

Just like in Kyser’s professional career, it’s all about fitting the pieces together.

Fox School News & Releases

Architect of Fox School’s Alter Hall dies

Michael Graves, left, with fellow Alter Hall architects Tom Rowe, center, and Michael Crackel.

Michael Graves, left, with fellow Alter Hall architects Tom Rowe, center, and Michael Crackel.

Michael Graves, the postmodern architect whose work includes Alter Hall, the home of Temple University’s Fox School of Business, died March 12. He was 80.

Michael Graves & Associates Architecture & Design, Graves’ architectural firm based in Princeton, N.J., designed Alter Hall with assistance of local architects Burt Hill Kosar Rittelmann Associates. Dedicated in 2009, the eight-floor, state-of-the-art building is one of the most-sophisticated business school facilities in the nation.

Graves’ team designed Fox School’s home to foster collaboration and connectivity among students and faculty, with soaring common areas, open staircases and ample meeting space. Alter Hall features a 4,200-square-foot student lounge, a 274-seat sloped auditorium, and a three-story atrium.

“Alter Hall was designed to be as dynamic and vibrant as our school community, and Michael Graves and his team were at the forefront of that design,” said Fox School Dean M. Moshe Porat. “Michael’s creativity and innovation rendered an indelible impression on our campus. It was with great regret to learn of Michael’s passing, and our thoughts at this time are with his family, friends and colleagues.”

Alter Hall ExteriorGraves’ architectural designs, which employed a menagerie of colors, symbolism and shapes, first took hold in the 1980s. His work, which inspired a generation of architects and popularized a form of design that’s still being used today, includes: the Swan and Dolphin Resort at Walt Disney World; the Philadelphia Eagles’ NovaCare Complex practice facility; and the U.S. Parks Service’s Washington Monument Restoration.

More than an architect, Graves also was an interior designer and product designer. He’s perhaps most-famously known for his collaboration with Target, for which he helped design the retailer’s “cheap chic” reputation with decorative-yet-affordable housewares and home goods.

Graves also served as a professor of architecture for 39 years at Princeton University. According to multiple published reports, he died of natural causes.

Alter Hall Atrium“Of all his accomplishments, Michael often said that, like his own family, his proudest creation was his firm,” the firm said in a statement. “As we go forward in our practice, we will continue to honor Michael’s humanistic design philosophy through our commitment to creative unique design solutions that transform people’s lives.”

Fox School News & Releases

Fox School’s Part-Time MBA program earns No. 20 ranking by U.S. News & World Report

The Fox School of Business’ Part-Time MBA program earned the highest ranking it has ever attained, reaching No. 20 in U.S. News & World Report’s latest rankings.

The Fox School Part-Time MBA improved 33 places, from No. 53 in last year’s report. This marks one the best single-year improvements of any part-time MBA program that was ranked by U.S. News in both 2015 and 2016. The Fox Part-Time MBA program is also the highest-ranked part-time MBA in the Greater Philadelphia region.

The distinction is part of U.S. News’ 2016 Best Part-Time MBA rankings, which were released March 10.

“We are excited by the latest U.S. News ranking, which recognizes our Part-Time MBA as one of the nation’s programs on the rise,” said Dean M. Moshe Porat. “We look forward to further enriching our Part-Time MBA program and to continue helping today’s business professionals evolve into tomorrow’s executives.”

Part-Time MBA students at Fox, who on average have seven years of work experience, earn their graduate degrees while maintaining their careers and completing courses at their pace. They experience the school’s well-known capstone consulting project, the Fox Management Consulting (Fox MC) Practice, through which students provide professional-grade strategic solutions to paying clients.

Flexibility is integral to the Fox Part-Time MBA. Students have the opportunity to take online, hybrid and Online MBA courses, adding to the convenience of the degree. And while Fox’s Part-Time MBA curriculum does not require international travel, students are granted opportunities to incorporate short-term study abroad trips into their program.

Like all Fox students, those in the Part-Time MBA program have access to the school’s renowned Center for Student Professional Development (CSPD), a comprehensive resource focused on preparing students for entry into the professional business environment. CSPD oversees internship and job placement for both undergraduate and graduate students at the Fox School.

The 2016 edition of Best Graduate Schools is available at www.usnews.com/grad.

Fox School News & Releases

Fox’s Full-Time Global MBA Earns Highest U.S. News Ranking in Program History

The Fox School of Business’ full-time Global MBA program improved seven places to reach No. 41 nationally, earning its highest U.S. News & World Report ranking in program history.

The designation is part of U.S. News’ 2016 Best Graduate Schools rankings, which were released March 10. Among full-time MBA programs nationwide, the Fox School and the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School are the only business schools in the Greater Philadelphia region to have been ranked in the top 50.

Additionally, the Fox Global MBA’s 95.2-percent job placement rate within three months of graduation ranked seventh-best in the nation, and its 3.61 average GPA rated fourth overall, according to the U.S. News report.

“The latest ranking of our Global MBA program by U.S. News serves as reaffirmation of Fox’s commitment to delivering a globally recognized business education and premier management training,” said Dean M. Moshe Porat. “The continued ascent of our Global MBA in both national and international rankings demonstrates the marketplace value of a program deeply rooted in experiential learning.”

Fox School’s Global MBA is a two-year program that combines experiential learning, paid internships, and a thorough immersion in the global business environment. Fox MBAs travel to, and participate in, emerging hotspots of social, economic, technological, and organizational innovation and entrepreneurship. The program features two required international experiences.

In addition to international immersions in emerging economies, students provide professional-grade strategic solutions to paying clients through the capstone Fox Management Consulting (Fox MC) Practice and have the option of pursuing a dual degree in a specialized masters program.

All Fox students have access to the school’s renowned Center for Student Professional Development (CSPD), a comprehensive resource focused on preparing students for entry into the professional business environment. CSPD oversees internship and job placement for both undergraduate and graduate students at the Fox School. Fox’s MBA students have maintained a 100 percent summer-internship placement rate since 2012, and a job-placement rate of 95.2 percent, which ranks among the nation’s best, according to U.S. News.

The 2016 edition of Best Graduate Schools is available at www.usnews.com/grad.

Fox School News & Releases

Fox School’s Management Information Systems department ranks No. 1 worldwide for research output

Dr. Munir Mandviwalla

The Management Information Systems (MIS) department at Temple University’s Fox School of Business is No. 1 worldwide for research output, according to two separate rankings.

For the second straight year, MIS has been ranked No. 1 in the world in the My Vision Research ranking. MIS also ranked first globally in the University of Texas at Dallas’ Top 100 Business School Research Rankings.

“I am very proud of the outstanding MIS faculty, who since 2000, when the department was founded, continue to excel in all parts of our mission,” said Dr. Munir Mandviwalla, Associate Professor and Chair of Fox School’s MIS department.

According to the 2014 update of My Vision Research, which previously was known as the Association for Information Systems (AIS) publications database, MIS ranked No. 1 for publications to the top-four academic journals for a five-year period, from 2010-2014: Management Information Systems Quarterly (MISQ), Information Systems Research (ISR), the Journal of Management Information Systems (JMIS) and the Journal of the Association for Information Systems (JAIS).

Within the same ranking, three Fox School professors were recognized for the most publications in MIS’ top-two journals for the same five-year period. Dr. Paul A. Pavlou, Fox School’s Associate Dean of Research, Chief Research Officer, and Milton T. Stauffer Professor of Information Technology and Strategy, was ranked No. 1 worldwide. Dr. Angelika Dimoka (No. 11), Associate Professor of MIS and Marketing and Supply Chain Management, and Dr. Youngjin Yoo (No. 15), Harry A. Cochran Professor of MIS, rounded out the list, for their publications in MISQ and ISR.

According to the University of Texas at Dallas’ Top 100 Business School Research Rankings, Fox School’s MIS department ranked No. 1 for a five-year period, from 2010-2014, for publications in MISQ and ISR. Fox MIS shared the top spot in the rankings with the University of Texas at Dallas.

Fox School News & Releases

Fox School to offer accelerated weekend MBA program for law professionals

For the first time, Temple University’s Fox School of Business will offer a Mini MBA certificate program for law professionals.

The accelerated weekend program, offered in partnership with Temple’s Beasley School of Law, is designed to equip working attorneys and recent law school graduates with the business acumen that’s most relevant and necessary to today’s legal environment, without disrupting their professional careers.

The Mini MBA is a 10-course offering that begins Friday, April 24, and runs through Sunday, April 26, at Temple University’s Shusterman Hall (campus map). The Mini-MBA provides 21 hours of classroom instruction, and 18 credits in Pennsylvania Continuing Legal Education (PA CLE).

“The Mini MBA is an exceptional addition to Fox’s executive education programs,” said Dr. Samuel D. Hodge, Professor and Chair of the Fox School’s Legal Studies department. “This program is unique because it is a joint enterprise between the Beasley School and Fox School, with top faculty from both teaching the courses.”

World-class faculty from the Beasley School of Law and Fox School’s Legal Studies, Finance, Marketing and Supply Chain Management, and Risk, Insurance and Healthcare Management departments will lead courses that include:

  • Accounting for Lawyers
  • Legal Issues in the Workplace
  • Drafting of Business Agreements
  • Industrial Organization and Corporate Strategy
  • Managing Risk
  • Corporate Compliance

Each day of the program will begin with a breakfast leadership session. Friday, Temple University men’s basketball coach and Fox School adjunct professor Fran Dunphy will cover effective business leadership. President of Puma Legal Placement Lysa Puma will explore marketing strategies for lawyers during Saturday’s session. And Sunday, Rosemarie Greco, the former president of CoreStates Bank and Chair of VISION 2020, will discuss leadership practices.

“The relationship between law and business is becoming more intertwined every year,” said Duncan B. Hollis, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs of the Beasley School. “We believe in equipping lawyers with the tools necessary for practicing in all contexts, and not just in traditional litigation settings. The Mini MBA offers lawyers the introduction they need to attain basic business skills, which can serve as a scaffolding upon which to build up real expertise in business law.”

The tuition cost of the Mini MBA program is $2,500, which includes materials and meals. Beasley School of Law alumni are eligible for a $500 tuition discount.

To pre-register, visit www.mytlawconnection.com/minimba15. Day-of registrants are welcome, as well, though spots are limited.

Fox School News & Releases

Fox School professor receives Microsoft’s MVP Award

A professor from Temple University’s Fox School of Business has been named a Microsoft MVP.

Dr. Isaac Gottlieb Professor of Statistics Dr. Isaac Gottlieb, whose passion for teaching students the ins and outs of Microsoft Excel, earned distinction as one of Microsoft’s 2015 Most Valuable Professionals. This marks the second straight year Gottlieb has been so recognized.

Microsoft’s MVP Award is presented to exceptional community leaders who are committed to sharing their technical expertise and real world knowledge of Microsoft products within their community and with Microsoft.

It all started with a simplified idea, Gottlieb said. After teaching separate software methods to students studying varying subjects, he said he sought out to find a “one-stop shop” to make learning easier for students. Microsoft Excel was his portal, and he’s come to perfect the system.

“I discovered that every subject that you teach, whether it’s statistics, operations management or analytics, has different software,” Gottlieb said. “It takes almost half a semester to master that software and, by the time you know the software, you don’t have time to practice the subject.”

Gottlieb said he started to apply statistics, operations management and analytics into Excel and began teaching his method.

“So that’s how I became an expert. It took me two years to perfect it,” he said.

According to Gottlieb, Excel has not changed much within the last 12 years, except perhaps the interface. Microsoft did recently add Business Intelligence in the last two years, he said.

“Once you master it, it’s like playing the piano,” Gottlieb said. “After a while, you just learn new music.”

Gottlieb was presented with Microsoft’s MVP Award in January. As a recipient, he has had the opportunity to meet with other Microsoft professionals from around the world. In November 2014, he attended the MVP Summit at Microsoft’s headquarters in Redmond, Wash.

Although there are more than 1,800 MVPs, very few are masters in Excel, Gottlieb said. Because of his expertise, Microsoft’s professionals have asked Gottlieb to hold a workshop at one of its Excel centers in Singapore.

While in Singapore, he said, “(Microsoft’s) development team contacted me and asked for my analytic ideas for its upcoming version of Excel.”

There’s no denying that Excel is Gottlieb’s forte. He has published a book on the subject, titled, Next Generation Excel: Modeling In Excel For Analysts and MBAs (For MS Windows and Mac OS), (Wiley 2013). He also has an Excel-Tip-Of-The–Month newsletter that is distributed to more than 50,000 subscribers.

Gottlieb teaches more than 1,500 students annually at the Fox School, and all incoming Doctorate of Philosophy (PhD), Master’s of Business Administration (MBA), Master’s of Science (MS) and Bachelor’s of Business Administration (BBA) students are required to complete his online Excel workshop during their respective programs.

“After you teach so many people for so many years, (Excel) becomes natural,” he said.

(To subscribe to Gottlieb’s newsletter, email isaacg@temple.edu.)

Fox School News & Releases

Fox School’s Global MBA students prep for trips to South America, MENA region

A group of panelists spoke to Fox Global MBA students about the Latin American region prior to the students’ Global Immersion trip there in March.

Experts on the Middle East/North Africa region spoke to Fox Global MBA students as part of a panel discussion prior to the students’ Global Immersion trip there in March.

Business meetings in Colombia seldom begin promptly, said Dr. Kevin Fandl.

How does he know this? An Assistant Professor of Legal Studies at Temple University’s Fox School of Business, Fandl has studied in Colombia. He traveled there in 2006 as a Fulbright Scholar, taught there, investigated its informal economy, and even wrote his PhD dissertation on his experiences there.

“You never walk into a business meeting (in Colombia) and start on time,” Fandl said to a gathering of Global MBA students. “Small talk can go on for 90 percent of the meeting and, in the last 10 minutes, you need to make your points and sign your deal.

A host of distinguished guests spoke to Fox’s second-year Global MBA students Feb. 12-13 at Alter Hall, sharing wisdom and tips in a panel-discussion format during a two-day workshop in preparation for the students’ upcoming Global Immersion trips.

Divided equally into two groups, the 42 Global MBA students will spend two weeks in either the South American nations Colombia and Chile, or in Turkey and Morocco, of the Middle East/North African (MENA) region. While there, the students will meet representatives of local companies and firms, participate in case studies and learn the entrepreneurial ecosystems of what Fox’s Dr. MB Sarkar called “transitional economies.” Last year, this very cohort made Global Immersion trips to India and China, two of the most promising BRIC nations.

“Among the competencies that are relevant in today’s market, developing contextual intelligence is being rated as one of the most critical for MBAs,” said Fox School Dean Dr. M. Moshe Porat. “We at Fox believe that, in order to develop the next generation of global leaders, we need to learn from the innovative business models that are being seeded in these emerging markets.”

Sarkar, Fox’s Global Immersion Academic Director, and Rebecca Geffner, Fox School’s Director of International and Executive Program, assembled dynamic panels with marquee guests related to both the Latin America and MENA regions.

Speakers included:

  • Ahmet Kindap, of Turkey’s Ministry of Development
  • Marwan Kreidie, Founder and Executive Director of the Philadelphia Arab American Development Corporation
  • Z. Joe Kulenovic, an international economist
  • Christian Rodriguez, Consul-General of Colombia
  • Laura Ebert, International Trade Specialist with the United States Department of Commerce and International Trade Administration
  • Ali Solyu, of Cameron University in Oklahoma, and Ipek University, in Ankara
Experts on the Middle East/North Africa region spoke to Fox Global MBA students as part of a panel discussion prior to the students’ Global Immersion trip there in March.

A group of panelists spoke to Fox Global MBA students about the Latin American region prior to the students’ Global Immersion trip there in March.

Sarkar and Geffner kicked off the two-day event with opening remarks, discussing the importance of immersing oneself into the culture and business practices of the countries they’ll visit, while offering insights into what the Global MBA students might expect during their travels.

Fandl served as moderator on a guest-speaker panel into the history, culture and politics of Latin America, of which Rodriguez and Kulenovic were guests. The panel informed students about the business climates and entrepreneurial ecosystems of Colombia and Chile. Fandl and Rodriguez offered the graduate students advice on conduct and decorum in a business atmosphere, while introducing themselves to professionals.

“In Chile and Colombia, know about their food, wine, culture, weather and definitely know your (soccer) teams,” Fandl said.

“Chileans and Colombians know when you are telling the truth about yourselves,” said Rodriguez. “Know your story and be comfortable. That will help you out 70 percent.”

Other guests on the panel included: Mitchell Mandell, attorney at White & Williams LLP, and Laura Ebert, International Trade Specialist with the United States Department of Commerce and International Trade Administration.

Later on Day 1, Global MBA Academic Director Dr. TL Hill presided over a panel discussion into the business climate and entrepreneurial ecosystems in the MENA region. The panel featured: Kreidie; Jean Abinader, COO of the Moroccan American Center and National Association of Arab Americans; Kindap from the Turkish Government and Joe Kulenovic, a consultant with the World Bank who is researching how cities in emerging countries become globally competitive.

The speakers conveyed to Global MBA students a pervasive gender inequality issue, mentioning the infrequency with which women are integrated into the workforce. Guests on the panel also suggested that international trade has significant growth potential in both Turkey and Morocco, which are natural bridge countries due to their geographic positions.

Porat and Deputy Dean Dr. Rajan Chandran provided keynote addresses. Additionally, Chandran will join Global MBA students, Sarkar and Geffner in Morocco for a one-day entrepreneurship conference being organized in partnership with Al Akhawayn University in Casablanca, as part of the Global Immersion experience.

“Our sincere hope is that this conference will become a seed for Fox’s intellectual engagement in the region, and our contribution to helping the local economies grow,” Chandran said.

Global MBA student Emily Fox, who majored in Spanish as an undergraduate, chose the Global Immersion trip through Colombia and Chile for obvious reasons.

“In the future, I see myself conducting business in a Spanish-speaking country, so I wanted to be exposed to how negotiations are handled in those countries,” said Fox, who is slated to graduate in May.

During the information sessions, students were asked to “prep now,” so they could immediately take advantage of the experience once their flights had landed.

“You have to get to know the people, figure out your target and set an idea of what you wish to accomplish,” Rodriguez said.

For Global MBA student Andy Oakes, learning about contrasting business practices and emerging global markets are the benefits of gaining international field experience.

“Long-term I’d like to work outside the United States in technology consulting,” Oakes said. “It’s important in the globalized economy that exists today to become immersed in multiple cultures.”

“Global Immersions are an extension on the program,” said Neeharka Damea, another Global MBA student. “The opportunity to experience multicultural backgrounds was the reason why I chose the Fox Global MBA program.”

Fox School News & Releases

RMI Intern Reception welcomes record number of students, employers

Photo credit: Sigma Chapter of Gamma Iota Sigma

Photo credit: Sigma Chapter of Gamma Iota Sigma

Students from the Risk Management and Insurance (RMI) program at Temple University’s Fox School of Business strolled through the MBA Commons at Alter Hall, ready to greet the largest contingency of employers ever gathered at the annual RMI Intern Reception.

Looking confident and dressed in their finest business-professional attire, the students had hands to shake, resumes to distribute and a shared objective.

“All of our students want internships,” said Dr. R.B. Drennan, the Chair of Fox School’s Risk, Insurance and Healthcare Management department. “Though we don’t require internships, so to speak, our students recognize the value in earning one. Internships are critical for professional development, earning industry experience and demonstrating their skills in an arena that might lead to a permanent position.”

The Fox School is home to the Sigma chapter of Gamma Iota Sigma, a professional international fraternity for RMI majors. The award-winning organization held its annual RMI Intern Reception, for which it hosted record-breaking numbers of students and employers. The sold-out event, held Feb. 12, featured more than 110 representatives from 45 companies and nearly 200 internship-seeking students.

To earn eligibility to attend the event, Drennan said RMI students must clear several professional development hurdles that include workshops, mock interviews and resume submissions.  The RMI Intern Reception has a strong tradition of excellence, he said. Fox’s RMI program, the oldest, continually running program in the United States, placed 180 students in summer internships in 2014.

“This is one of the premier RMI programs out there,” said Decker Youngman, Chief Recruitment Officer of Tampa-based Brown & Brown Insurance, which has had a Fox RMI intern each of the last five summers. “That’s why we make the trip and that’s why we’re here.”

Another employer, Sunny Cutler [Class of 2000] of human capital consulting firm Aon Hewitt, said RMI students blend “knowledge of industry with the necessary soft skills.”

“We can find bright students anywhere,” said Cutler, Aon’s Vice President of Health and Benefits consulting group. “This event provides a great recruitment opportunity where we can learn more about the student.”

Students attending the RMI Intern Reception each wore nametags for easy identification while meeting employers for the first time. Many confidently carried leather portfolios, which held copies of their resumes. Some strategically navigated the room with precision, opting to bypass long waits at the tables of some employers before returning when the crowd had thinned, their strategy allowing them to optimize the number of employers they met.

Shannon Nolan, a dual RMI and Accounting major at the Fox School, said preparedness for the event was paramount.

“To make the most of this experience, you have to take a look at the map to see the layout of where employers are located,” said Nolan, a native of Havertown, Pa., and the Director of RMI Career Development with Gamma Iota Sigma. “You take a look at what you’re wearing, whether you have your resume ready and then you introduce yourself confidently.

“And you always make sure to get their business card.”

To secure the registration of so many top-tier employers – “it’s a who’s-who of the insurance industry,” Drennan said – no cold-calling was required, according to Michael McGuire, Vice President of RMI Career Development for the Sigma chapter of Gamma Iota Sigma.

“Professors Drennan and (Michael) McCloskey foster such good relationships with the employers here, and from that, we have a reliable industry contact list that helps the process,” said McGuire, an RMI major from Lansdale, Pa. “It’s a point of pride and a point of relief to see this event go off so well. The people who came before me in this position left a legacy of success for the Intern Reception, and I’m glad we were able to keep the legacy going.”