Through entrepreneurship, Temple University students, faculty, staff, and alumni united at the 19th annual Innovative Idea Competition.
The competition engages entrepreneurship at Temple, and invites those affiliated with the university to share their innovative ideas for products, services, concepts, and technologies that could lead to new businesses. Ideas in all stages of development were eligible for submission.
The Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute (IEI) at the Fox School of Business hosted the Nov. 10 event, which was held at Alter Hall. IEI received 426 submissions from 14 of Temple’s 17 schools and colleges, marking a 21-percent increase in submissions from last year’s competition. The competition welcomed submissions from local community colleges, as part of a program funded by Temple’s Center for International Business Education and Research (CIBER).
“The Idea Competition is unique in that it allows participants to take an idea out of the theoretical and see its potential for becoming a reality,” said Ellen Weber, IEI Executive Director. “All of our participants have access to mentors during the application process who can help them develop their ideas and begin that mode of thinking.”
Ideas were put to the test as finalists competed for spots in eight cash prize categories.
Nigel Satenstein, a Business and Management major at the Fox School, won the overall grand prize of $2,500, as well as the first place in the People’s Choice Award category and the Global Innovative Prize. He walked away as the competition’s winner, with prize money totaling $4,000.
His idea – Pinpointer – would connect the more than four billion people worldwide without a home address to global e-commerce markets through the use of precise digital codes. In countries like China, India, and Nepal, the lack of sufficient home addressing infrastructure makes it impossible for online order deliveries to be shipped to someone’s door, Satenstein said. The customer, rather, has to arrange for pick-up of their orders at nearby landmarks, such as a school or a church.
Pinpointer would deliver a “virtal breadcrumb” technology, Satenstein said, that tracks the customer’s journey from his or her home to the pick-up location. This way, the next time the consumer orders a product online, the delivery service can follow the trail of a previous delivery in order to reach the customer’s front door.
“This was an amazing opportunity from Temple to help jump-start our business, and we hope this momentum will carry through for the rest of our current funding round,” Satenstein said. “Pinpointer will use the money we won to expand our efforts at tech development, hire additional workers and bolster our servers used to store collected data. The rest of the funds will be used for marketing and customer-acquisition efforts.”
Lewis Katz School of Medicine student, Conor Vickers, took home first place for the Graduate, Faculty, Staff, or Alumni category. He won $1,000 for SensiFoam, a concept for a product that would prevent pressure ulcers or bedsores with a disposable foam patch that can wirelessly transmit pressure data to a tablet device. Fox School student Peter Agada clinched second place in the same category and earned a $500 prize, for his wearable balance device. His idea involves eyeglasses that have sensors measuring the head, leg, and trunk movements, and changes in elevation that ultimately would help to prevent falls for the elderly.
In the Undergraduate category, both first and second place went to students from the College of Engineering. Christopher Ricci received the $1,000 first prize with his idea of a regenerative suspension system. Designed for automobiles, it would use kinetic energy from road disturbances to create electrical energy. The $500 second prize went to Emily Knight for Prohibere, which would use a hair and skin serum to eliminate the urge for people with trichotillomania to extract their hair.
Audience members got into the action, too. For the third consecutive year, attendees cast votes for the People’s Choice category using their smartphones.
“The pitch event provides an opportunity for the finalists to use the questions and feedback from our judging panel to identify the next steps toward testing their ideas and building them into something real,” Weber said.
Comcast executive David L. Cohen visits Fox School as Musser Visiting Professor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship
Temple University’s Fox School of Business welcomed Comcast Corporation executive David L. Cohen as the Warren V. “Pete” Musser Visiting Professor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship.
Established in 2015, the Musser Professorship is an endowed term professorship filled by experienced and well-known practitioners who are interested in visiting the Fox School to mentor and engage with students.
Cohen serves as the Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer with the Comcast Corporation. Students, young professionals, and business leaders alike packed into the seventh-floor MBA Commons of Alter Hall to hear Cohen’s Nov. 7 presentation, titled “Leaders Lead.” Temple’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute (IEI) sponsored the event.
As a leader in Philadelphia for many years, Cohen shared what he has learned, the challenges he has faced, and his top-10 traits possessed by effective leaders. Paramount to all, he said, Cohen stressed the importance of volunteer work and involvement with nonprofits.
“I really wanted to be successful and help people outside of the classroom and outside of school,” Cohen said of his early years as a professional. “I volunteered and served leadership roles in nonprofits. Leaders have the opportunity to get involved with issues beyond their businesses. They have a chance to help the community around them.”
Cohen beamed with pride in discussing Comcast’s investment in philanthropy. The company has donated close to $4 billion to communities in which its employees live.
Cohen also shed light on his work with former Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell, for whom he served as Chief of Staff from 1992-97, a span of Rendell’s two terms as Philadelphia mayor.
“There were a lot of challenges Ed faced when he took office: high crime rate, declining population, declining economy,” Cohen said. “The two leadership traits for which I most admired him for were his team-building skills and his communication skills. He had a clear vision for the city and he knew how to communicate that well.”
Cohen then shared his list of 10 must-have leadership skills, a list which included humility, sense of humor, ability to inspire, vision, communication, and others, and showed brief video clips to punctuate each one of them. Cohen answered questions from the audience with topics ranging from challenges in diversity and inclusion, to complexity in building teams.
“Mr. Cohen is such an incredible and influential person, and it’s really beneficial to hear his experiences and advice,” said first-year graduate student Jeffrey Stern, who added that he was grateful to hear first-hand from a business leader like Cohen.
“He placed emphasis on leaders remaining humble and being able to give back to their communities, and those are traits that I’ll always keep in mind for the future,” said senior Economics major Dan McLaughlin.
Following his question-and-answer session, Cohen left attendees with a final piece of advice.
“Learning never stops,” he said, “and it certainly doesn’t stop after you’re finished school. Nothing is impossible.”
Gen. Colin Powell cuts ribbon to celebrate the new Military and Veteran Services Center at Temple University
When Chiquitta Evans served on a base in Willow Grove, Pa., she would regularly drive past Temple University’s Ambler campus.
“I would always say, ‘When I retire I am going to come back to Philadelphia and go to Temple,” said Evans, originally from Alabama.
After serving in the U.S. Marines for nearly 16 years, Evans is now a Human Resource Management major at Temple University’s Fox School of Business, and is slated to graduate in 2018.
“This wasn’t here when I started,” Evans said, as she looked around sixth-floor office space in Conwell Hall that overlooks Broad Street. The furniture is all new thanks to a $10,000 grant from the Student Veterans of America in partnership with the Home Depot Foundation.
The Military and Veteran Services Center officially opened on Main Campus in August after more than five years without a centralized location. The center held a grand opening ceremony Nov. 15 with a little help from a special campus visitor — Gen. Colin Powell cut the ribbon that marked a milestone in Temple’s history.
Powell’s visit headlined a leadership forum sponsored by NewDay USA, a leading veterans-affairs mortgage lender that helps American veterans purchase or refinance their homes. The forum also featured Admiral Tom Lynch, NewDay USA Executive Chairman, as part of an ongoing series hosted by colleges and universities around the country.
“I think the American people appreciate what our veterans do and will always be there for our veterans,” Powell said, “but it really takes local activity. It takes what you’ve done here at Temple. It’s a remarkable facility.”
The Center develops programs and streamlines services to enhance the transition to a successful university experience for veterans, service members, and their dependents and survivors. The office provides a one-stop service center and is also home to the Temple Veterans Association.
The Temple Military and Veterans Services Center will serve the nearly 1,300 military service members and veterans in the student population. G.I. Jobs Magazine has ranked Temple University as a Military Friendly Institution each of the last six years. For business students, the Fox School of Business provides Yellow Ribbon Program match scholarships to eligible applicants, to help offset tuition costs for military personnel and veterans. In 2016, U.S. News & World Report ranked the Fox Online MBA and Online BBA programs as the Nos. 1 and 5 veteran-friendly programs in the country, respectively.
Currently, a group of Fox undergraduate students is supporting the veteran-empowering Travis Manion Foundation through Dr. Jean Wilcox’s 10-10-10 entrepreneurial marketing course, which tasks students with multiplying $10 of seed money by a factor of 10, to be donated to various charities, non-profits, foundations, and community organizations.
Powell, after the ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Temple veterans center, delivered an address to students and faculty at the Temple Performing Arts Center. Fox School military personnel and veterans said they welcomed the opportunity to hear from the retired four-star Army general.
“As a leader in my current job, and as a veteran, I paid attention to his message,” said Tim Orange, a senior Management Information Systems (MIS) major from Cheltenham, Pa. “He mentioned taking the time to show people that you care. As he spoke, I reflected a lot on my life, and how I can personally apply his message.”
Added Heikell Perez, a senior Business Management major from Miami, Fla.: “Gen. Powell mentioned that when you place people in leadership positions, you need to empower them to make decisions. … It wasn’t so much his message was (exclusively) for veterans, as they were for the entire crowd.”
Orange, who served six years of active duty with the U.S. Army, and Perez, who served nearly eight years of active duty with the U.S. Air Force, and many other military personnel and veterans attended Powell’s hourlong leadership forum, which was sponsored by NewDay USA. Like Temple, the company remains committed to educating military personnel and veterans, and their families. The NewDay USA Foundation has provided four-year scholarships to the children of fallen and disabled veterans.
The message of veteran support from Powell, “one of the nation’s most-senior advisors,” said Silas Adams, embodied what Adams said he’s witnessed first-hand at Temple University.
“I firmly believe Temple and the Fox School take great strides to support the veteran population and acknowledge the value they add to the campus culture and the dynamic they bring to the Temple experience,” said Silas Adams, who served eight years in the U.S. Marine Corps as a command and control specialist.
After Adams’ discharge from the U.S.M.C he appreciated the support he received “nearly instantaneously,” he said, from Laura Reddick, Temple’s Associate Director for Adult and Veteran Student Recruitment, and Debbie Campbell, Fox School Vice Dean and faculty advisor for the Temple Veterans Association. At Fox, Adams completed his Bachelor of Business Administration degree in MIS, and is now pursuing a Master of Science degree in IT Analytics and Cybersecurity.
“I can attribute my success to the support I received and continue to receive from Temple and Fox, collectively,” Adams said.
A short drive to the boardwalk taught Gerard H. “Jerry” Sweeney a lifelong lesson about professional drive.
As a child, Sweeney would walk two miles of boardwalk planks in Wildwood, N.J., until he had secured a job for the summer. And only then would Sweeney’s father provide a ride home.
“I have found that persistence defines us, motivates us, and relentlessly pushes us forward,” said Sweeney, who received the 2016 Musser Award for Excellence in Leadership.
Temple University’s Fox School of Business honored Sweeney as the recipient of the Musser Award, the highest honor conferred by the School, during a Nov. 16 dinner and reception at Mitten Hall. This year’s event marked the 20th anniversary of the award ceremony, which has recognized a litany of Philadelphia’s leading businesspeople.
The evening paid homage to Sweeney, who is President, Chief Executive Officer, and Trustee of Brandywine Realty Trust, which develops, builds, and manages the nation’s leading Class A office and mixed-use properties. He has overseen the growth of Brandywine Realty Trust from four properties and a total market capitalization of less than $5 million to more than 33 million square feet and a total market capitalization of close to $5 billion.
“Jerry is a fresh-thinking, innovative leader who is helping to elevate Philadelphia’s reputation into the upper echelon of the world’s greatest cities,” said Dr. M. Moshe Porat, Dean of the Fox School. “His commitments to community, civic change, and professional leadership are unmatched, and we are proud to honor him.”
Sweeney is credited for coining the term “vertical neighborhood,” which has been used to describe the 50-story FMC Tower at Cira Centre South and its premier amenities.
“Our true legacy is not in the money we make or the buildings we build,” Sweeney said, upon accepting the Musser Award. “Our legacy is in how many lives we touch, how many smiles we make, and how much cheer we bring.”
Tyler Mathisen, the managing editor of CNBC Business News and co-host of CNBC’s Power Lunch, once again served as the event’s master of ceremonies. He introduced attendees to one of Sweeney’s earliest business ventures, when he developed a business plan to sell rabbits as a fourth-grader. Mathisen then welcomed to the stage a rabbit named Tony, from Philadelphia’s Morris Animal Refuge.
“He’s yours to take home, Jerry, if you’d like to reestablish your first business conquest,” Mathisen said, jokingly.
The Musser Awards dinner and reception gathers Philadelphia’s leading business executives under one roof. Past top honorees in attendance included Warren V. “Pete” Musser, Robert Fox, and Steven Korman, and Temple trustees Dennis Alter, Chairman Patrick J. O’Conner, and Daniel H. Polett.
Also recognized at the reception were:
- Excellence in Teaching: Dr. Pallavi Chitturi, Research Professor of Statistical Science
- Excellence in Research: Dr. William W.S. Wei, Professor of Statistical Science
- Excellence in Faculty Service: Martin Doyle, Assistant Professor of Management Information Systems
- Excellence in Administrative Service: Dr. Janis Moore Campbell, Director of Graduate Professional Development
- Excellence in Student Leadership: Ancy Thomas, FOX ‘15
- Excellence in Alumni Achievement: Daniel Conway, FOX ‘87
O’Connor called Sweeney “a one-of-a-kind businessman, community servant, and leader. The Fox School of Business could not have chosen a more-deserving honoree for this 20th anniversary event.”
Sweeney credited his success to his supportive professional colleagues and loving family.
“The only limit on our capacity to dream and grow are those that are self-imposed,” said Sweeney, who credited his success to supportive colleagues and his loving family. “And to achieve this recognition from the Fox School, the vanguard of Philadelphia’s renaissance, is truly special.”
After surveying more than 300 universities nationwide, The Princeton Review and Entrepreneur magazine have ranked the Entrepreneurship programs at Temple University’s Fox School of Business among the best in the country.
The undergraduate- and graduate-degree programs in Entrepreneurship earned top-10 rankings for the second straight year. The undergraduate program remained at No. 8, and the graduate program improved one spot to No. 9.
Temple is one of four colleges and universities nationally to have been ranked within the top 10 at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, and is the only college or university in the Greater Philadelphia region to have been ranked by The Princeton Review and Entrepreneur magazine. Temple has appeared in each installment of the entrepreneurship rankings since 2006.
“It’s rewarding to see our entrepreneurship programs recognized nationally, and in the company of prestigious schools,” said Dean M. Moshe Porat.
“Entrepreneurship education is a pillar across Temple University, and we at the Fox School are proud to lead this charge. More and more resources have been made available to students from all 17 schools and colleges at Temple. Our mission is to prepare and encourage students to think and act like entrepreneurs, no matter where their careers guide them.”
Published by The Princeton Review and to be included in the December edition of Entrepreneur magazine, the 2017 rankings recognize 25 undergraduate- and 25 graduate-level programs for excellence in entrepreneurship education. The rankings are based upon a large variety of quantitative and qualitative criteria, including the number of: entrepreneurship-specific courses offered; faculty who are also entrepreneurs and/or serve on the boards of new ventures; businesses started and funds raised by alumni; and entrepreneurship-focused activities, competitions, programs, clubs, and centers.
Temple University offers a portfolio of interdisciplinary programs to serve the various constituencies within the university and the region. These range from programs supporting incoming freshmen, like a General Education Course on Creativity & Organizational Innovation or the Innovate & Create Living Learning Community; those that support faculty scientists, like the TechConnect Workshop and the Graduate Certificate in Innovation and Technology Commercialization; and those that support the professional community in the region and abroad like the Master of Science in Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship.
Through Temple’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute (IEI), the region’s oldest-such center, which is housed at the Fox School, the university conducts annual business plan competitions like the Innovative Idea Competition and the Be Your Own Boss Bowl® for students, faculty, staff, and alumni. With overall prizes exceeding $500,000 in value, the Be Your Own Boss Bowl® is considered one of the most-lucrative and comprehensive business plan competitions in the nation. Another widely accessible entrepreneurship program, Blackstone LaunchPad, is designed to support and mentor students regardless of major, experience, or discipline.
This fall, Temple further strengthened its commitment to entrepreneurship education with the establishment of the Temple University Entrepreneurship Academy, which is geared toward the incorporation of entrepreneurship education in coursework delivered by faculty members throughout all of Temple’s 17 schools and colleges.
IEI provides internship opportunities, business-planning workshops, seminars, mentoring and coaching, in addition to annual conferences in social, global, women’s and industry-specific entrepreneurship. Executive Director Ellen Weber and Academic Director Dr. Robert McNamee lead the entrepreneurship and innovation programs. IEI manages Mid-Atlantic Diamond Ventures, an independent organization that assists emerging technology-based companies in their effort to build sustainable businesses through coaching and providing an investment forum, and works closely with Robin Hood Ventures, a group of Philadelphia-area angel investors that focus on early-stage, high-growth companies.
Over the last four years the IEI has expanded its offerings to include: a Master of Science in Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship; graduate certificates in both Innovation Strategy and Innovation & Technology Commercialization; MBA concentrations in both Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management; a General Education course in Creativity & Organizational Innovation; and an Entrepreneurial Living Learning Community. IEI, in partnership with the College of Engineering, launched a Master of Science in Engineering Management, and supported the creation of a Master of Science in BioInnovation in the College of Science & Technology as multiple ancillary supporting programs.
Temple University’s Fox School of Business welcomed guests from Schwab Advisor Services to Alter Hall to dedicate the Charles Schwab Financial Planning Training CenterTM.
The dedication ceremony, held Nov. 2, acknowledged the $250,000 grant awarded by the Charles Schwab Foundation to the Fox School in support of its Financial Planning programs.
The grant enabled the construction of the Charles Schwab Financial Planning Training Center in second-floor space in Alter Hall. The contribution also financed the purchase and installation of 75 laptops with data connections, a 65-inch LCD wall-mounted display, a digital stock ticker, and HD capability.
“As a proud Schwab employee and a proud Temple University alumnus, I am honored to dedicate this room – the Charles Schwab Financial Planning Training Center,” said Tom Intoccia, vice president, senior divisional managing director, Schwab Advisor Services, who received his Bachelor of Business Administration from the Fox School. “To the students here today, when I sat in your seats, opportunities to learn and grow in this field, with amenities such as these, simply did not exist.”
As a show of gratitude to Schwab, Fox School Dean Dr. M. Moshe Porat presented Intoccia with a piece of custom artwork with small photographs of Fox students comprising Schwab’s corporate logo.
“Recognizing opportunity has been a hallmark of my 20 years as dean of the Fox School,” said Porat. “A few years ago, we identified one of those opportunities – financial planning. We are beginning to see the largest intergenerational transfer of wealth in this country’s history, and a need for advisors to handle the volume of clients and client assets. It is our goal to supply talented students to fill those needs, as we build one of preeminent Financial Planning programs with the support of Schwab Advisor Services.”
More than a dozen Schwab Advisor Services relationship managers and clients as well as students and faculty of the Fox School filled the Charles Schwab Financial Planning Training Center, which had been decorated inside and out with balloons in the company’s hallmark blue and white colors. The dedication event, moderated by Cindy Axelrod, Assistant Professor of Finance and Director of Fox’s Financial Planning programs, also featured two panels of leading financial planning industry executives.
“Schwab has granted students like me the opportunity to follow our interests by supplying us with the tools and technology to further our knowledge in financial planning,” said Fox School sophomore Luke McCartney.
Fellow Financial Planning students conveyed similar sentiments of gratitude.
Jordan Sowell, a senior, said the Charles Schwab Financial Planning Training Center will “provide an enhanced learning experience” for Fox School students now and in the future.
The Charles Schwab Foundation’s grant to the Fox School, said senior Alec Sensenig, demonstrates “a strong belief in our future, and an investment in the future of the industry.”
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Charles Schwab Foundation is a private, nonprofit organization funded by The Charles Schwab Corporation. Its mission is to create positive change through financial education, philanthropy, and volunteerism. More information is available at www.aboutschwab.com/community. The Charles Schwab Foundation is classified by the IRS as a charity under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. The Foundation is neither a part of Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. nor its parent company, The Charles Schwab Corporation. Charles Schwab Foundation and Temple University are independent of each other and are not affiliated entities.
Temple University’s Institute for Business and Information Technology names NBCUniversal CIO its Executive In Residence
PHILADELPHIA, Nov. 10, 2016 – Temple University’s Institute for Business and Information Technology (IBIT) has appointed Michael Bradshaw, NBCUniversal Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer, as its newest Executive in Residence.
The IBIT Executive in Residence program facilitates interaction between industry leaders and the faculty and students of Temple University’s Fox School of Business. In his role as IBIT Executive in Residence, Bradshaw will visit the Fox School Nov. 14, and engage with faculty and students on topics and projects of mutual interest, while also promoting the activities of IBIT, the Fox School’s Management Information Systems department, and the Fox School of Business.
NBCUniversal is member of IBIT, and Bradshaw is a member of the Fox IT Advisory Board.
“I’m honored to serve as an Executive in Residence at the Fox School,” said Bradshaw. “The challenges we address today through technology represent a blend of business strategy, planning and communication. It’s important to engage the next generation of students so they understand this complexity and recognize potential opportunities as they pursue technology careers.”
Bradshaw, in his role as Executive Vice President and CIO of NBCUniversal, leads the information technology organization and oversees NBCUniversal’s global IT operations, infrastructure, applications, and strategy.
Prior to joining NBCUniversal, Bradshaw served as Vice President and CIO for Lockheed Martin’s mission systems and training business. He managed IT services that supported business programs and functions, and led the IT integration for major acquisition, resulting in a global business unit of more than 35,000 employees. He also has served as Vice President of Lockheed Martin’s enterprise IT services, leading the team responsible for enterprise application and infrastructure services. Bradshaw previously held various leadership positions at IBM, where he led its global IT infrastructure transformation initiatives.
He holds a Master of Science degree in Computer Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he also earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration and Operations Management.
Said Laurel Miller, Director of Temple IBIT: “Michael has successfully led major complex projects while managing and implementing dramatic changes in business models. He is the ideal role model for students.”
Christopher A. Vito
Jim Solano envisioned a career as a certified public accountant, after graduating Temple University’s Fox School of Business. Solano ultimately became a CPA and launched his accounting firm, before pursuing a career in a completely different line of work.
The Philadelphia-area native has represented more than 800 athletes and coaches from the National Football League (NFL) during a lengthy career as a professional sports agent. At least one player or coach from 19 Super Bowls has counted Solano as his agent, and Solano said he has represented too many all-league players to count.
His path toward that line of work was coincidental.
“There were a few football players that at the time had lived in my building, the Society Hill Towers,” Solano said. “I got to know them and they were really impressed with the fact that I was a CPA, a college professor, and owned my own accounting firm. I helped them with some advice on taxes at first, and then they told their friends. And those friends told other friends, and before you know it I’m representing them.”
Solano earned his Bachelor of Science, Master of Science, and MBA degrees – all in Accounting – from the Fox School. He joined the School’s faculty in 1969, after attaining his MBA and becoming a CPA. It was then that Solano realized the multitude of career paths available to him. Today, he’s on faculty at nearby Philadelphia University.
“What I learned in accounting and business gave me a great foundation to start a business on my own,” Solano said.
Solano has represented legendary Philadelphia Eagles players like Harold Carmichael, Mike Quick, and Seth Joyner, and Eagles head coaches Buddy Ryan and Ray Rhodes. He was the agent for 18 of the 40 players who saw the field in Super Bowl XV, in which the Eagles lost to the Los Angeles Raiders.
These days, Solano has branched into golf. He represents a half-dozen clients, and still maintains his representation of a few NFL coaches.
“I could fill 10 pages of memories with what I’ve done,” said Solano, who remains in contact with many of his clients. He even was asked to be the godfather to a number of his clients’ children.
Although his work keeps him busy seven days a week and 12 months a year, Solano said he is not willing to give up any one of his professions. He best describes his professional time management as “a Venn diagram.”
“The time I’m busy with teaching, I’m not busy as a CPA or as an agent, and visa versa,” he said. “I love teaching. I love the impact that I have on my students’ lives. I truly believe that if you love what you do, it doesn’t feel like work.”
Solano said his professional success cannot top his life’s greatest work: being a family man. He and his wife, Teri, have one daughter, Lesley, and three grandchildren, Jack, Kate, and Andrew.
“They are my entire world,” Solano said.
The U.S. Department of Commerce cites a three-to-one ratio of men to women in positions in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). And a recent study from the University of Washington suggests that women pass on careers in STEM because of a “masculine culture.”
The 17th Annual League for Entrepreneurial Women’s Conference, held Oct. 19 at Temple University’s Alter Hall, addressed the STEM gap and its stigma. The theme of the event – Climbing the Chromosomal Ladder: Creating Your Own Domain – brought close to 200 women and men from throughout the Philadelphia region to Temple’s campus.
The conference is the annual featured event for Temple’s League for Entrepreneurial Women, and serves as an advocacy initiative to address the growing challenges and interests of entrepreneurial women in the region.
More than a half-dozen innovators, entrepreneurs, self-starters, and STEM professionals shared their personal stories of turning ideas into career paths.
The number of American businesses increased by 47 percent from 1997-2014, according to the National Association of Women Business Owners, and during that span, the number of women-owned businesses soared by 68 percent. Those figures demonstrate that “female entrepreneurs in this country are a force to be reckoned with,” said Elizabeth H. Barber, associate professor at Temple’s School of Sport, Tourism and Hospitality Management and the League’s co-founder.
Barber and fellow League co-founder Betsy Leebron Tutelman, Temple’s senior vice provost for strategic communications, along with Ellen Weber, executive director of Temple’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute (IEI), hosted the event.
Keynote speaker Lori Bush, FOX ’85, spoke of the leadership and cultural differences between men and women in the workplace, and how women can leverage their strengths to take a step forward and break the glass ceiling. “If anything I’m saying today resonates with you, find a way to incorporate it into your life and your career tomorrow,” said Bush, who completed her MBA at Temple.
Recently retired chief executive officer of Rodan + Fields, Bush often arranged town hall meetings for her colleagues. And while there, she would encourage Rodan + Fields employees who happened to be celebrating an anniversary with the company to share their favorite professional memories. “Often times,” Bush said, “they’d relive a moment where their group came together to overcome a problem.”
Those reminders – that she and her colleagues were working toward something bigger than themselves – fueled Bush’s professional fire.
The League for Entrepreneurial Women welcomed Dr. Amy Goldberg for an open conversation and question-and-answer session. Goldberg is chair and professor of surgery at Temple’s Lewis Katz School of Medicine, and serves as surgeon-in-chief of the Temple University Health System.
Goldberg also founded the Cradle 2 Grave program, one of very few of its kind, which educates middle- and high-school students from North Philadelphia, New Jersey, Delaware, and New York on gun violence, violence prevention, and the medical and emotional realities of gun violence.
“Temple has changed me, personally and professionally,” Goldberg said. “It’s helped me embrace the mission of Temple, which is providing service to the community.”
The League for Entrepreneurial Women’s conference also provided a platform for three female entrepreneurs to share their success stories during Temple Talks.
- Bethany Edwards, SMC ’06, co-founder of LIA Diagnostics, developed the first eco-friendly and flushable pregnancy test
- Dana Donofree, a breast cancer survivor, founded AnaOno, an intimate apparel company for women who have undergone mastectomies
- Kriti Sehgal, a restaurateur, co-founded three fast-casual restaurants in Philadelphia
Kriti Sehgal, a restaurateur, co-founded three fast-casual restaurants in Philadelphia
This year’s event included a new segment – Power Pitches – during which four female entrepreneurs who are Temple students or alumnae, introduced their ventures with brief presentations.
At the conference, Gina M. Saffo, POD ’86, DPM, was inducted to the League for Entrepreneurial Women Hall of Fame. Saffo is a podiatrist and partner with the Washington, D.C.,-based Foot & Ankle Specialists of the Mid-Atlantic, and supports young women studying at Temple’s School of Podiatric Medicine.
“I am always inspired at events like this, when I’m surrounded by driven women who have the head and the heart to achieve great things,” said Temple Provost JoAnne A. Epps.
Temple honors Fox professor emeritus, hails record-breaking year during 2016 Celebration of Globalization
Temple University honored two key players in internationalization at its 4th Biennial Celebration of Globalization, held Nov. 9 at Adventure Aquarium in Camden, N.J.
Kailin Tuan, Ph.D., Fox School of Business Professor Emeritus, received the 2016 Global Temple Award for his groundbreaking work in bringing the study of Risk Management and Insurance and Actuarial Science to the People’s Republic of China.
Andrea Canepari, Consul General to Italy in Philadelphia, received the 2016 Global Philadelphia Award for his tremendous impact on internationalizing Philadelphia through the promotion of political, economic, educational and cultural relations between Italy and our region.
“We have much to celebrate,” said Associate Vice Provost of International Affairs Jie Wu, as he pointed out many of Temple’s recent internationalization milestones: an international student body that includes more than 3,000 students from 128 different countries; 1,150 students who studied abroad in 43 countries; and an increasing number of international co-operations, 158 from 46 countries.
Reminding us that Temple’s internationalization commitment has been long-standing, Provost and Executive Vice President JoAnne A. Epps said, “We’re not johnny-come-lately. We’ve been there for five decades. I’m really proud of that.” Epps noted that she recently returned from Nankai University in Tianjin, the university where Dr. Tuan first introduced Risk Management in China and created what is now a nationally ranked program.
Temple President Richard M. Englert, who presented the Global Temple Award to Tuan, began by praising the audience – a group invited because of their involvement in the globalization of Temple. Englert emphasized that internationalization “is a team sport,” he said. “We all work together to make Temple great.”
Accepting the award, Tuan remembered his career at Temple, from 1977-93, when he personally sent admission packages to students interested in studying Risk.
“I’m happy to see Temple now has students from all over the world, and many of them are from China,” said Tuan, who was particularly pleased to meet with three Nankai students — Jiayaun Ren (exchange), Wentao Zhou (exchange), and Qi An (dual Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Actuarial Science).
In the words of Englert, Temple’s presence as a global university is an essential component to its terrific momentum.
Fox School of Business alumna Esosa Ighodaro designed a mobile application that can monetize the art of snapping selfies.
Ighodaro combined her love of social media and fashion by developing COSIGN, an app that allows users to directly shop for products that they see in social-media posts. Users can include product information by tagging what they are wearing in the image, creating a social media-meet-shopping experience.
Ighodaro credited her time at Temple University for helping her develop “a competitive edge.”
“I worked hard to get ahead and stay ahead while I was at Temple,” said Ighodaro, who graduated from the Fox School in 2008 with a degree in Finance. “I was surrounded by students who always pushed me to do my best work, and that gave me a competitive edge later in life.”
Two years ago COSIGN took Kickstarter by storm and, in 2016, it finished as a runner-up in a national competition organized by AT&T and was set to appear on “Project Runway.” Her idea for it came about quite organically.
Ighodaro had secured a management association position with Citigroup in New York City. What started off as a compliment on a subway platform from a complete stranger during one of her commutes unfolded into an ongoing business partnership. Abiodun Johnson is the co-founder and technology mastermind behind COSIGN, and he met Ighodaro as they waited for a train. They shared a lengthy conversation, exchanged contact information, and together built COSIGN.
To get the business off the ground, Ighodaro worked in corporate banking for more than six years and saved as much as she could before making a move into the tech field to support her work with Johnson and their concept for COSIGN.
“The journey is expensive,” Ighodaro confessed. “I talked to everyone about investing, even my doctor, and anyone that would listen. Most said no, but I was just persistent.”
The COSIGN duo launched a Kickstarter campaign in November 2014, just as Ighodaro left corporate banking. Skeptical at first, the two realized their app showed promising results once they had created a video that explained its usage. In just 30 days, COSIGN raised $41,000 on Kickstarter – enough money to build the first complete prototype of the application.
“That validated for me that people cared about what I had been working on in my basement for so long,” Ighodaro said.
In May 2016, AT&T’s Agility Challenge picked COSIGN as one of its 10 national finalists. The competition awarded cash prizes for the small business ventures that demonstrated an understanding, embrace, and appreciation for agility in their daily pursuits. COSIGN finished as a runner up, and netted a $10,000 prize.
COSIGN, which has now partnered with more than 1,200 brands and retailers, features more than 20 million products – from fashion and beauty to even electronics – in its database for users to search, tag, share, and shop.
COSIGN is set to appear on Lifetime’s Project Runway: Fashion Startup in November 2016. The series showcases aspiring fashion and beauty entrepreneurs as they pitch their concepts to a panel of investors in the hope of securing funds.
“I’ve always found it intriguing and something that just came naturally,” Ighodaro said of becoming an entrepreneur.
Now she’s living her dream, one selfie at a time.
For Daniel Isaacs, a cup of coffee turned into a learning opportunity for his students.
This summer, Isaacs took a coffee break from designing a new Online MBA Sustainability in Business course. As he walked to Temple University’s Saxbys café, he thought about the central questions for his course, which included how businesses are looking to reduce waste and increase efficiency and profit through sustainability.
At the Saxbys counter, Isaacs, an Assistant Professor of Legal Studies at Temple’s Fox School of Business, asked, “What does the café do with its used coffee grounds?”
“The manager responded, we throw them out — anywhere from 80 to 100 pounds each day,” Isaacs said. Then he realized, “I had a real-world example that my students could use to apply the sustainability concepts that we would study.”
Using the figure from Temple’s Saxbys café as his guide, Isaacs estimated that close to 500,000 pounds of used grounds were left unused annually between Saxbys’ 14 Philadelphia-area locations. Isaacs explained that “to maximize efficiency, companies need to search their value chains for waste.” And citing Cradle to Cradle by Michael Braungart and William McDonough, he added that, “waste equals food.”
Isaacs challenged his MBA students to develop a consulting project around the use of Saxbys disposed coffee grounds. The students, from Fox’s Online and Part-Time MBA programs, were to create strategies for how Saxbys could best put to use the used grounds. This provided the students with an opportunity for experiential learning, which is integral to the Fox School’s fabric.
The result: In August, two students delivered their findings and recommendations to executives in a presentation at Saxbys’ corporate headquarters in Philadelphia. Ittai Marom and Ashley Murgatroyd compiled the strongest findings from the class to develop a comprehensive presentation.
For Murgatroyd, she liked the idea of offering the grounds to local farmers for use in their composting piles. “In theory, that works,” she said, “but from a practical sense, composting can only take a certain percentage of coffee grounds, so the grounds would have needed to be more widely dispersed.”
Marom believed strongly in a redesigned atmosphere at Saxbys locations, with space in each café reserved for growing plants and herbs, and producing compost to be used to make and bake products for the individual shops.
Isaacs said he has since spoken with representatives of Saxbys, who conveyed their positive feedback from the presentation. CEO and founder Nick Bayer referenced one of Saxbys’ core values: “We do more with less. We believe in finding ways to be sustainable in everything we do every day.”
“Years after you finish a degree, the courses that stand out are those that involve practical, hands-on learning,” said Marom, who will complete his Fox Part-Time MBA in May 2017. “I don’t think I’ll soon forget this course, and this project.”
“In MBA classes, it’s important to learn theories that you can ultimately put into practice,” said Murgatroyd, who will complete her Fox Part-Time MBA in December 2017. “That’s what we accomplished for Saxbys, and it was great to see their senior leadership group process our research and evaluate our suggestions.”
Dan Genuario is on a mission to capture Philadelphia one frame at a time.
The senior Management Information Systems major at Temple University’s Fox School of Business is using his creativity to showcase the beauty in the abandoned. His photography hobby has turned into a passion, and is opening up doors to his potential future.
Three years ago, Genuario used his cell phone camera to start taking pictures of graffiti and architecture around the city. He noticed his father had a digital camera that he never used and, one day, decided to pick it up and start shooting.
“I’m self-taught, but I like to credit my abilities to my friends. I learn a lot from their feedback, everything from how to shoot to post-processing,” Genuario said.
Genuario has found a community while hunting for rundown and abandoned areas to photograph. His adventures have taken him to a variety of landscapes, including dilapidated warehouses and asylums that date back to the 19th century.
After sharing his work with the Saxby’s Coffee shop on Temple’s campus this summer, the shop decided to showcase a piece in its newly remodeled space. The photograph that hangs on the wall is the exquisitely captured interior of a deserted water treatment plant from the 1930s.
“It was so photogenic and such beautiful architecture,” he said. “I’ve never seen anything quite like that place.”
After exhausting most of the vacant properties in and around Philadelphia, Genuario decided it was time to expand his portfolio. This past summer, he combined his loves of travel and photography into several road trips with friends.
“We went to the Midwest, down south, and up to New England to branch out more,” he said.
Genuario’s work also has appeared in several shows throughout the city, at places like the Trocadero Theatre and Goldilocks Gallery. A dedicated student, he was offered other art shows, but declined due to his schoolwork. “I have to find the right balance between school and photography,” he explained. “I don’t want to give up my passion of photography for school, but at the same time I want to graduate.”
Genuario said he’s “still trying to figure it out,” with regard to his career choices, but said he’d ideally like to apply the information technology and business management skills he’s honed at the Fox School with the potential launch of a photography business.
“I can have a good career with my major and eventually retire to pursue photography,” Genuario said. “I would love to travel the world and take photos.”
(Republished with permission of YaleGlobal Online)
By Ajai Gaur and Ram Mudambi
NEWARK, PHILADELPHIA – Trade typically figures prominently in U.S. presidential election, and 2016 is no exception. While campaigning, politicians tend to adopt anti-international business positions that are theoretically unsound and lack empirical evidence.
Four fallacies underline these common political arguments.
- Fallacy 1: Manufacturing jobs are the basis of American prosperity.
- Fallacy 2: Imports make us poorer.
- Fallacy 3: Success of foreign firms always helps foreign countries, success of U.S. firms always helps the US economy.
- Fallacy 4: To export, firms must sell to buyers in foreign countries.
For more from the Fox School’s Dr. Ram Mudambi on the ties between politics and international business, click here.
Temple University’s Fox School of Business received a $250,000 grant from the Charles Schwab Foundation as part of Schwab Advisor Services’ efforts to support the Fox School’s financial planning programs.
The grant enabled the construction of the Charles Schwab Financial Planning Training CenterTM in second-floor space in Alter Hall. The contribution also financed the purchase and installation of 75 laptops with data connections, two 65-inch LCD wall-mounted displays, a digital stock ticker, and HD capability. A room dedication ceremony will take place Wednesday, Nov. 2.
“We are proud to partner with Temple University to inspire and develop the next generation of independent investment advisor talent,” said Bernie Clark, executive vice president and head of Schwab Advisor Services. “We believe that students in the financial planning program will be well-positioned to meaningfully contribute to the independent investment advisor industry, a growing and increasingly prominent field.”
“Combining the power of a degree in financial planning from the Fox School of Business with the generous support of the Charles Schwab Foundation affords our students a tremendous opportunity,” said Cindy Axelrod, Director of the Fox School’s Financial Planning programs. “This experiential learning facility provides access to state-of-the-art investment and financial planning software and allows our students to train with the best tools available.”
Financial planning professionals take a holistic approach that enables their clients to identify and attain lifestyle and retirement goals through finance management, retirement and estate planning, and tax-efficient investing.
The Fox School of Business introduced Financial Planning as an undergraduate major in 2015 to prepare students for careers in this in-demand field. Students who complete Financial Planning curriculum at Fox are eligible to sit for the Certified Financial Planner (CFP) examination upon graduation, a unique feature of the program. The Fox School’s Finance department oversees the program, which also draws upon the expertise of faculty from Fox’s Legal Studies in Business and Risk, Insurance, and Healthcare Management departments.
About the Fox School of Business at Temple University
Established in 1918, the Fox School of Business at Temple University is the largest, most-comprehensive business school in the Greater Philadelphia region, and among the largest in the world, with nearly 8,500 students, more than 200 full-time faculty and more than 65,000 alumni. Accredited by AACSB International — a distinction held by less than 5 percent of the world’s business schools — the Fox School offers BBA, Global MBA, Part-Time MBA, Executive MBA, Online MBA, Specialized Masters, and PhD programs, and an Executive Doctorate in Business Administration, on campuses throughout the world.
About Charles Schwab
At Charles Schwab we believe in the power of investing to help individuals create a better tomorrow. We have a history of challenging the status quo in our industry, innovating in ways that benefit investors and the advisors and employers who serve them, and championing our clients’ goals with passion and integrity. More information is available at www.aboutschwab.com. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and LinkedIn
About Charles Schwab Foundation
Charles Schwab Foundation is a private, nonprofit organization funded by The Charles Schwab Corporation. Its mission is to create positive change through financial education, philanthropy, and volunteerism. More information is available at www.aboutschwab.com/community. The Charles Schwab Foundation is classified by the IRS as a charity under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. The Foundation is neither a part of Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. (member SIPC) nor its parent company, The Charles Schwab Corporation. Charles Schwab Foundation and Temple University are unaffiliated entities.