Week ending January 30, 2015

Updates:

  • I’ve been looking at student placement data and thinking a lot about student placement after graduation and how we can improve student success.  To that end, the college is looking at expanding the BPD (Business Professional Development) Program, the Professional Mentoring Program (both at the undergraduate and MBA level), and exploring possible new programs which we will discuss at an upcoming CoBA All Hands Meeting.
  • My attendance at the recent Summit for Online Leadership and Strategy conference last week was eye-opening.  Key was seeing many very successful online programs, both public and private, and how they worked through many substantial issues to reach success.  Though not necessarily directly appropriate for our college, I’d be glad to send anyone a summary of what I learned.
  • Mohammad is working through the mid-year financial update with Kathy and Janet and the results are positive, we are certainly in better financial shape than we were just a year ago.  We will report at an upcoming CoBA All Hands.
  • Just an FYI: I bring in my personal copies of the Wall Street Journal daily as well as my subscriptions to Fortune, Business Week, Bloomberg, etc. and leave them at the entrance to the dean’s suite for anyone to borrow and read.

Immediate Plans:

  • Participate in the Office of Undergraduate Studies Strategic Planning Task Force hoping to voice and add “student placement” to the Task Force objectives of “increase graduation rates” and “reduce time to graduation”.
  • Work through the 3 Year Rolling Plan as well as working with Advancement on CoBA Sponsorship needs and plan for 2015.
  • I am looking forward to the CoBA Meet and Greet Thursday February 5 at noon in MH 125.  I expect to see you there!
  • The President’s Report to the Community is this coming Thursday morning.  We expect over 1,000 community and business members at this important 25th Anniversary Event.  The next major event is Saturday April 11, Discover Day, for which Carrie Smith is organizing CoBA’s participation.  You’ll also be seeing some of CoBA’s faculty and alumni highlighted in upcoming regional press coverage.
  • I am still searching for a Faculty Chair for the college as well as several department chairs.  Our college has not had a faculty quorum since May 2014 (9 months), including one faculty meeting called by our Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs.  As such, there is no formal mechanism by which the dean’s office can consult the faculty, according to the Faculty Governance Document. So I am once again appealing to the tenure-track faculty to participate in decision making.

Celebration of Successes:

  • Kudos to Kelly Briggs and Advancement and my board members for landing major sponsorships for the 2015 Spring Dean’s List Breakfast and 2015 Spring Senior Experience Trade Show (Wells Fargo).  Kelly is closing additional major 25th Anniversary Signature Sponsorships from a wide variety of our sponsor companies.

Alumnus Highlight:

Kristin Elliott was recently appointed as CEO of Precision Measurement Engineering, an internationally known oceanographic and freshwater instrument design corporation.  A fairly recent graduate of our MBA Program, Kristin was a communications and sociology undergraduate at UCSD.

Remember that name and this face: Kristin Elliott.

KristinElliott

Week ending January 16, 2015

Updates:

  • For those of you that missed our All CoBA Meeting yesterday, I have published the presentation slides which you can access here.  If you don’t have a Box account and don’t want to create one, message me privately and I’ll send you the presentation.
  • I can’t use our college’s Vision and Mission Statements in the community and have it roll off my tongue in a coherent way.  Taking nothing away from the work that went into creating them, I need a greatly simplified version for my use when meeting with community and business partners.  The simplified version follow here.
    Vision: We develop people for the future.
    Mission: We prepare our region’s workforce.
    Comments and modifications welcomed.
  • I also wanted to highlight from our meeting my expectations of you, repeated below: this is the “crawl” part of a “crawl, walk, run” strategy of expectations:
    • Professional behavior
    • Respect those in other disciplines
    • Civility towards fellow faculty, staff, and students
    • Be present, engaged, bring your “A-game”
    • Participate
    • Respond to email in a timely fashion
  • Mohammad and I have submitted our Three Year Rolling Plan, a forecast of programs and spending mostly focused on 2015-16.  It assumes a 5% growth (not guaranteed) as well as attempts to recapture revenue from out-of-state students, which comprise about 5% of our population.

Immediate Plans:

Celebration of Successes:

In lieu of my regular Alumnus Highlight, I want to share a small number of the encouraging statements made by our alumni in our “25 for the 25th” alumni early returns; these are in response to the question: “Please share how your CoBA experience helped you in your professional development and career“.  We plan to have 25 from B.S. alumni, and 25 for MBA alumni.  These should make you proud:

  • After reflecting on my years at CoBA, I consider myself lucky as I was able to receive a private education for public education fees. The low student to teacher ratio is a helpful tool in building a community with my fellow peers to share, study, and experience the knowledge I gained in Finance. I was able to learn complex business theory, while listening to my professor’s share their real life business applications within the CoBA community. Given the strong community of learning at CoBA, I was able to build relationships with my fellow peers that I still value today. As I move forward as a business owner, I continue to call on my friends and network that attended CoBA, to continue exploring ideas in business and striving for success.
  • The CoBA program was well-rounded and introduced me to many concepts that a product development manager should be aware of: operational excellence, market segmentation, strategic positioning, competitive advantages and product differentiation to mention a few. The theories of organizational behavior, leadership, ethics, and cultural differences came in handy when working with global companies each with a distinct culture. Of special utility were the analytical decision making tools I learned to guide my decision making processes in uncertainty.
  • The MBA degree really broadened my outlook on business, and helped me identify and remedy my blind spots. Coming from a technical background, I had a poor understanding of the intricacies of finance and sales, and the courses I took were a huge help. What I learned helped me communicate and connect with other groups within the business, and had a major impact on the quality and types of relationships I have been able to develop in business. I absolutely loved the quantitative classes. They helped me understand risk in an entirely new way. Most valuably, I obtained technical skills in logistics, decisions sciences, and modeling, which had an immediate impact on my career.
  • My CoBA experience was instrumental in my professional development and my career. The personal attention I received in my program from the highly qualified team of professors gave me the opportunity to excel in courses that I thought were beyond my reach. My MBA has opened doors I never thought possible. There is no way I would be where I am today without CoBA.

We also asked “Please share a fond/favorite memory of your time at CSUSM.”  Many of you are named in those responses. Rather than try to highlight a few which I could not do equitably, when all responses are in, I will send out individual notes to each person mentioned in a response.

Week ending January 9, 2015

Updates:

  • I have scheduled All CoBA Kickoff Meetings for the spring semester at 1 pm Thursday January 15 in Markstein Hall 102.  I hope you can join us.  1 pm-1:30 pm is the All CoBA Meeting; 1:30 pm-3:00 pm is the Faculty Meeting.  I have my own agenda items, but please send me yours and any questions you’d like me to address, in advance please.  As stated before, if everyone arrives on time and behaves nicely, I promise to end early.
  • Please join me in welcoming Dr. Maia Farkas and Janet Morris to CoBA!  Maia Farkas is our new Assistant Professor of Accounting and comes to us from California State University, Fullerton.  Maia received her Ph.D. from the University of South Florida.  Maia’s research interests include the use of accounting information for judgment and decision-making.  She comes with excellent recommendations from students and exhibits the qualities of a fine teacher. She also has prior experience as a tax and corporate accountant.  Maia’s office is Markstein 453, and she can be reached at Maia Farkas.
    Janet Morris is our new Budget & Operations Analyst, replacing Brenda Martin.  Janet is coming from Procurement, Contracts & Support Services where she has worked in Accounts Payable for about 8 years and, prior to that, in Planning Design and Construction where she was involved with the construction of Markstein Hall.  Janet is a native San Diegan, one of the few!  Janet will be located in Markstein 422 and can be reached at Janet Morris.
  • Cata Ratiu was the winner of the $20/free lunch from the “Still reading” contest in the December 19th blog entry.  Did you miss it?

Celebration of Successes:

  • Congratulations to Qi Sun for winning the Outstanding Research Award at the 2015 Global Conference of Business and Finance Conference for her paper ““Stock Price Discovery Process in Earnings Season”.  Did you read her paper?  Message to CEO’s planning to announce earnings: “Good news or bad news, announce early.”
  • President Haynes noted Senior Experience in CSUSM’s recognition of community service learning in being awarded the Carnegie’s Community Engagement Classification once again.  In terms of Service Learning hours, Senior Experience continues to lead all other programs.
  • I have found that properly utilizing Advisory Boards to be much more difficult in non-profit than in for-profit organizations, however I have been impressed with some of the recent work done in our college.  The GSCM Advisory Board (under Robert Aboolian) completed last year a preliminary broad industry survey with the following key question: “Please indicate the top 10 key areas you believe are important courses for at Supply Chain degree” among other questions related to the depth and breadth of curriculum. I recently reviewed the data and, though there is a good relative stacking of desired analytical skills as expected, “People Skills” came out as the most important key characteristic employers are looking for in a new hire.  This points out the importance of our BPD Program, among others.  Please let me or Robert know if you’d like to see the detailed results.

Immediate Plans:

  • Regarding alumni desired skills, I am still looking for a faculty member to join the Office of Undergrad Studies 5 Year Strategic Plan effort in hopes we can get “placement” added to “increase grad rates” and “reduce time to graduation” as a strategic objective.  If no one else volunteers, I will.
  • Early results are in for writing our “25 for the 25th” alumni articles and there is a newly added separate survey specific to MBA graduates yet to be started.  Key questions are: “Please share how your CoBA experience helped you in your professional development and career” and “Please share a fond/favorite memory of your time at CSUSM”.  We will share results later on, but I suspect reading these will make your day no matter what your role in was in these students’ lives.
  • I am formulating numerous plans and points of view that I will share at our All CoBA Kickoff Meetings Thursday January 15.
  • Complete the Three Year Rolling Plan with Mohammad.
  • Jim will be out of town in two weeks (January 19 – 23) attending the Summit for Online Leadership and Strategy in San Antonio, Texas.

Alumnus Highlight:

Heather Dody is the founder and CEO of Ingenium, a local company that focuses on changing the way hazardous, biological and radiological waste is handled. Ingenium goes beyond disposal or incineration, all with processes that reduce cost, risk and liability. Ingenium was also recognized as one of Inc’s 5000 Fastest Growing Environmental Companies three years in a row, with a recent 3 year growth rate of 131%.  Heather also serves as President of BioNet, a non-profit association devoted to biological safety.

Remember that name and this face: Heather Dody.

Heather-Dody

Wishing you a Happy, Healthy, and Prosperous New Year

A short and personal note to wish you a happy, healthy, and prosperous New Year!

Peggy and I chose to spend New Year’s eve on Palomar Mountain and have enjoyed snow-shoeing the 18-24″ of snow that we received.  Photos and a video below if interested.

Best -Jim

Below: The last sunset of 2014.

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Below: The treehouse we built for our grandchildren last spring, closed for the season (at right).treehouseComparisonBelow: Snowshoeing through the woods (30 second video).

Best -Jim