El Camino de Santiago Field Trip

Imagine you just spent the spring semester studying abroad in Spain or Australia, taking business courses and international electives while immersing yourself in the local sites, cuisine, language and culture. For 28 Mays Business School students, this recently happened. They spent the past spring semester at one of 34 partner schools located throughout Europe and in Australia, China, Ecuador, Hong Kong, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Singapore and South Korea.

This summer, Mays students are participating in a variety of other programs around the world, including:

  • Faculty-led study opportunities: ChinaRussia Business, Europe Marketing, France Business and Spain Business
  • MBA and MS exchange programs: Peking University (China), Copenhagen Business School (Denmark), EDHEC (France) and WHU (Germany)
  • Internship programs: China, Spain and United Kingdom

The Center for International Business Studies provides undergraduate and graduate students with a variety of international experiences ranging in duration from one week to one semester. Students may choose to participate in faculty-led study abroad programs, semester-long exchange programs with foreign partner institutions, field trips, internships and volunteer programs in 36 countries covering all continents except Antarctica.

Leah Mendes, who studied at Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona, Spain, called the experience “truly life-changing.” “I would highly encourage anyone considering a study abroad to go through with it – it will shape you and teach you in many ways, and is a unique experience you may never have after college.”

Jordan Hudnall, who went on the Russia Summer program last year, said she gained much more than she expected to. “I have a new mindset about life and being appreciative, learned a ton about international business and culture which cannot be taught in the classroom, and have fantastic new friends!”

For students not able to go abroad during a full semester or the summer, there are winter break faculty-led study abroad opportunities: India Business Environment and South Africa-Swaziland Entrepreneurship and Non-Profit Business.

To learn more about the various international opportunities, visit http://cibs.tamu.edu or stop by Wehner 230.

Categories: Centers

Blake Petty

Blake Petty, the former Assistant Vice President for Research at Texas A&M University, has been named the new director for the Center for New Ventures and Entrepreneurship (CNVE) at Mays Business School. As director, Blake assumes responsibility for Startup Aggieland along with the student accelerator’s oversight board and the full repertoire of programs at CNVE.

Blake received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Texas A&M University, and for 14 years he has worked in administrative positions at the university and A&M System, including a 10-year stint in the Texas A&M University System’s Office of Technology Commercialization.

As Assistant Vice President for Research, Blake coordinated all Innovation, Industry Relations and Business Development initiatives at Texas A&M, and facilitated commercialization and entrepreneurship opportunities for the campus’ nearly 3,000 faculty researchers. Blake has been a driving force behind solidifying entrepreneurship and industry partnerships, and has been a vital asset to the innovation ecosystem at Texas A&M.

Blake also brings with him extensive experience in business incubator management and economic development, having directed operations of the Texas A&M Research Park and Bioscience Business Accelerator. It was in this role that Blake was able to secure space and funding support to allow Startup Aggieland to establish operations in the Research Park in 2012. Blake has a great deal of experience in directing the economic development impact of university activities, and he is professionally certified under the National Business Incubators Association’s Incubator Management Program.

CNVE, a part of Mays Business School’s Department of Management, provides encouragement, education, networking and assistance to entrepreneurially minded students, faculty and Texas businesses. Since its launch in 1999, the center has enhanced student education through campus speakers, competitions, programs, work experiences and financial support. Blake has been a major contributor to the growth and development of CNVE and its programs in the following roles:

  • Serving as a member of CNVE’s advisory council
  • Serving as a moderator and CNVE representative at Aggie Entrepreneurship Saturday
  • Mentoring for 3 Day Startup, Startup Aggieland and Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities
  • Judging competitions such as Raymond Ideas Challenge and MBA Venture Challenge
  • Serving as a founding partner in the launch and development of Startup Aggieland

Blake’s overarching goal for CNVE is to strategically align and enhance entrepreneurship initiatives across the Texas A&M campus, while ensuring the sustainability of CNVE’s entrepreneurial programs and further establishing CNVE as the hub for entrepreneurial activities. He believes that the CNVE can offer every Aggie the opportunity to explore entrepreneurship in an experiential learning environment, and thereby unleash the true potential of Texas A&M University’s entrepreneurial ecosystem to inspire, innovate, connect and act to make our world a better place.

ABOUT MAYS BUSINESS SCHOOL

Texas A&M University’s Mays Business School educates more than 5,600 undergraduate, master’s and doctoral students in accounting, finance, management, management information systems, marketing and supply chain management. Mays consistently ranks among the top public business schools in the country for its undergraduate and MBA programs, and for faculty research. The mission of Mays Business School is creating knowledge and developing ethical leaders for a global society.

ABOUT CNVE

The Center for New Ventures and Entrepreneurship, a part of Mays Business School’s Department of Management, provides encouragement, education, networking and assistance to entrepreneurially-minded students, faculty and Texas businesses. Since its launch in 1999, the center has enhanced student education through campus speakers, competitions and programs, work experiences and financial support. For more information about CNVE, visit: http://cnve.tamu.edu/

 

 

Categories: Centers, Staff

Camp Life

Fifteen MBA students teamed up with Camp LIFE to create and hold the first Camp LIFE Family Day Camp, which attracted 51 campers in April. The MBA student volunteers paired up with their campers and families to support and encourage each camper throughout the day. This year, family members also were invited to stay at the camp to witness the nurturing environment provided for their children.

MBA Students Helping Our Community is a student organization for graduate students that focuses on giving back to the community. MBA SHOC does this by providing assistance to local, national and international charities through community service and fundraising events. Members participate in many community initiatives such as The Big Event, Habitat for Humanity, Special Olympics-Texas and Camp Life.

Since 2010, MBA SHOC has been a primary sponsor of Camp LIFE, a unique and inclusive camping adventure for children with disabilities and their siblings. In the past, the MBA students have raised money every winter through fundraisers to help support camper sponsorships, but this year they wanted a more hands-on experience.

Amy Sharp, associate director of Camp Life, said she saw the students gain an incredible amount of comfort with disability by volunteering for Camp LIFE. “The MBA SHOC gained cultural competency in a culture often forgotten, the culture of disability. I saw these individuals grow in one day. At the end of the day the MBA SHOC members were confident, important role models to the campers.”

The groups participated in horseback riding, barnyard petting, fishing, canoeing, creating art and archery. Parents of the 27 youngsters shared their gratitude and appreciation for the Camp LIFE Family Day Camp and the Mays MBA students.

Chad Riley, president of MBA SHOC, said the event helped members exemplify selfless service, a Texas A&M University core value. “Our organization felt that creating an event with the campers would allow us to be a more effective partner, broaden our experiences, and give us an opportunity to have a great time while serving others,” he said. “This was one way for us to sacrifice a day off to serve our community and be there for families of children with disabilities. Each of us learned what it means to hold to these values. “

Riley said the camp helps give the MBA students a greater respect for parents of children with disabilities. “We learned there is more to service than sending a check, and we have a better understanding of how we can make helping our neighbors a way of life.”

Bench

ABOUT MAYS BUSINESS SCHOOL
Texas A&M University’s Mays Business School educates more than 5,000 undergraduate, master’s and doctoral students in accounting, finance, management, management information systems, marketing and supply chain management. Mays consistently ranks among the top public business schools in the country for its undergraduate and MBA programs, and for faculty research. The mission of Mays Business School is creating knowledge and developing ethical leaders for a global society.

Categories: Students, Texas A&M

Sammy Vu

Originally from Vietnam, freshman business management major Sammy Vu found her way to Aggieland. She decided to attend Texas A&M University on a full scholarship and said she knew she belonged after attending Fish Camp the summer before her freshman year. “The spirit of Texas A&M resonated with me,” said Vu. “I am a very family-oriented person, and A&M has a great family-like atmosphere.”

During her freshman year, Vu has been involved on campus through several student organizations. She is a member of the Regents Ambassador Program and Aggie Women in Business and will be a mentor next year in the Institute for the Development and Education of Asian-American Leaders (IDEAAL).

Vu’s favorite class has been the Freshman Business Initiative (FBI), which teaches business skills to incoming freshmen and helps them transition into college through small group meetings with student peer advisors and faculty mentors.

“I like that FBI and the Regent program are both academically and emotionally supportive,” she said. Through FBI, Vu said she has been able to learn critical business skills, such as resume writing and interviewing tips, as well as to develop a support system. “Dr. (Henry) Musoma, my peer leaders and everyone in my small group played important roles in making FBI one of my best experiences my first semester at A&M,” she said.

Vu will continue serving in FBI next year as a Peer Leader on the Academic Committee, where she will be assigned around 15 freshmen and will help develop lesson plans for the students.

Vu is pursuing a business degree with a focus in management and entrepreneurship and has already shown an aptitude for managing a business. Beginning with a simple idea, Vu started making handmade gifts for her teachers during her senior year of high school. That idea has now blossomed into Limitless Lettering, an Etsy-based shop that sells painted porcelain gifts, such as plates and mugs.

In addition to running Limitless Lettering, Vu’s future goals include getting her Aggie ring, earning an MBA and establishing her own fashion line. She believes hard work pays off and values the opportunity she has been given to enhance her future.

“I took advantage of my one chance to come to America to achieve my goal of the “American Dream,'” said Vu. “I aspire to obtain a better education and a quality future career to improve the future of my family and to give back to my community.”

sammy1

ABOUT MAYS BUSINESS SCHOOL
Texas A&M University’s Mays Business School educates more than 5,600 undergraduate, master’s and doctoral students in accounting, finance, management, management information systems, marketing and supply chain management. Mays consistently ranks among the top public business schools in the country for its undergraduate and MBA programs, and for faculty research. The mission of Mays Business School is creating knowledge and developing ethical leaders for a global society.

Categories: Texas A&M

Two graduates from Texas A&M’s business school are among the 2014 Distinguished Alumni, the highest honor bestowed upon a former student of Texas A&M University.

James A. Mayo Jr. '70

James A. “Jim” Mayo Jr. ’70 received a bachelor’s in management from Texas A&M. He enjoyed a successful career in banking and is the retired chairman/CEO of Alice Bancshares Inc. He is a Past Chair of The Association of Former Students Board of Directors and a past chair of the Texas A&M Foundation Board of Trustees. An active A&M Club volunteer, he has served as president of both the Laredo and Brush County A&M Clubs, and served on Texas A&M’s Vision 2020 Task Force. He has funded two endowed scholarships, an opportunity award and is an Endowed Century Club donor to The Association of Former Students. His generosity to Texas A&M has earned him recognition as a member of the Legacy Society at the Texas A&M Foundation. He has served on numerous bank boards, the board of directors for the Texas Bankers Association and many civic and philanthropic boards. He has three children.

Charles A. “Chuck” Ellison ’76, received a bachelor’s degree in finance. He is a veteran of the U.S. Army’s JAG Corps and is managing shareholder of the Ellison Firm in Brazos County. He was named the 2013 Texas Aggie Bar Association Aggie Lawyer of the Year, is Past Chair of The Association of Former Students Board of Directors and a founding trustee of the Texas A&M University System PAC. At Texas A&M, he was a company commander and a Ross Volunteer. He and his wife, Tedi, are Endowed Century Club donors to The Association of Former Students and have provided gifts to the 12th Man Foundation and the Texas A&M Foundation. Ellison served on the Vision 2020 Mid-Term Review Committee and has been an active volunteer in the Bryan/College Station community including the Chamber of Commerce, Hospice, United Way and the Boy Scouts of America. Ellison has two daughters and two grandchildren.

Charles A. Ellison '76

Another Distinguished Alumnus, Charlie W. Seely Jr. ’55, is tied to Mays through his receipt of the Aggie 100, award, which spotlights the fastest-growing Aggie-owned or Aggie-led companies. Seely is a U.S. Army veteran, an independent oil and gas producer, president of Seely Oil Co. and chairman of three companies that manufacture plastic products.

For more information, go to https://www.aggienetwork.com/distinguishedalumni/

Categories: Texas A&M

Ideas Challenge

During the 2014 Raymond Ideas Challenge, hundreds of students dreamed up a “big idea” and pitched those concepts to judges and the community, through both a written proposal and a video pitch describing their ideas. The top 40 ideas were presented live to judges before the top three winners were selected and honored at an awards ceremony.

A separate competition evaluated the online pitch videos based on the number of votes they received by the general public. Prizes were awarded for the videos with the most votes.

The Center for New Ventures and Entrepreneurship (CNVE) at Mays Business School hosted the event, which was open to Texas A&M students of all majors and classifications. Students were able to enter the contest individually or in teams.

The following were the top three winners in the traditional competition:

• 1st Place ($3,000) — Tree to Aircraft
• 2nd Place ($2,000) — SiCoustics
• 3rd Place ($1,000) — Modular Monitoring Platform
• Honorable Mentions ($500 each) — HeadsUp Tackling Trainer, Persistent Golf Ball, Backseat Bib, Miniaturized Sleep Apnea Diagnosis Device

The following were the top three winners for the video contest:

• 1st Place ($1000) — eWriter
• 2nd Place ($500) — ReCYCLING Bus
• 3rd Place ($250) — Symbiot

The pitch presentations generally presented information such as what the idea is, why it is necessary, how it differs from existing products or services and what resources would be needed to implement the idea. A question-and-answer session followed each presentation, in which judges raised concerns and questions that were not addressed during the presentation.

Marketing major Damani Felder ’14 said the contest was a great way to develop important business skills. “The contest provides good practice in developing a sales pitch,” he said. “Confidence is very important; you need to be well versed in what you are presenting.”

According to aerospace engineering major Kyle Brookover ’17, the biggest challenge lies in selecting the right idea. “The hardest part of the competition is coming up with the initial idea,” he said. “Once you’ve done that, the rest flows easily.”

For more information on the Ideas Challenge, visit http://cnve.tamu.edu/programs/ideas-challenge/.

ABOUT MAYS BUSINESS SCHOOL
Texas A&M University’s Mays Business School educates more than 5,600 undergraduate, master’s and doctoral students in accounting, finance, management, management information systems, marketing and supply chain management. Mays consistently ranks among the top public business schools in the country for its undergraduate and MBA programs, and for faculty research. The mission of Mays Business School is creating knowledge and developing ethical leaders for a global society.

Categories: Centers

Rebecca Cooke

A leader must become comfortable with power in order to exert influence — especially if the leader is a female — explained strategy consultant and leadership researcher, Rebecca Cooke, at the Women’s Leadership Initiative in April. The event was hosted by the MBA Programs Office at the Mays CityCentre Houston facility.

In her presentation called “Exercising Power and Influence,” Cooke shared a series of concepts and strategies with the 90 women in attendance. First, she described the difference between power and influence. Power is essentially the work we can do over time, she said, while influence as demonstrated in leadership, allows us to perform work through others — a key capability for effective leaders.

When introducing Cooke — who has served as her executive coach — Mary Lea McAnally, associate dean for graduate programs at Mays, said each of the women attending the series is making a long-term investment. This was the second session in a four-part series, and Cooke plans to speak again next fall. “You are investing in something that will build,” McAnally said. “Go home and plant it at your jobs, in your families and in your communities.”

Cooke compared the communication patterns between men and women. Based on research:
• Men tend to be more direct communicators, succinct, contextually-focused, action-oriented and speak in terms of I/me.
• Women tend to be more indirect, elaborate, personally-focused, emotional and speak in collaborative terms of we/us.
The importance of this comparison is that it allows us to determine why men are more verbally influential as leaders than women.

Cooke noted some common mistakes that women make, including trying to do too much, limiting themselves to utilizing one or two types of power, using the wrong kind of power or not having the power to be effective in a particular situation.

She gave the women some specific advice, such as assessing their strengths and weaknesses, getting over power hang-ups, embracing their vulnerabilities and getting outside their comfort zone and trying new methods. “When interacting in a conflict situation, connect with the listener first with words like “I hear you…'” she advised. “Learn to use questions to direct the conversation.”

Cooke defined some of the types of power that emerge in the workplace:

• Coercive — the ability to hold others to their responsibilities and when they don’t, hold them to appropriate consequences
• Connection — power and influence based on who you know and effectively using those contacts
• Expert — power that is related to what we functionally know
• Informational — based on having access to valuable and important information
• Legitimate or positional — power that is related directly to our job responsibilities and authorities
• Referent — the power of people who are well-liked and respected
• Reward — power that is based on a person’s ability to grant rewards such as opportunities and recognition

Cooke also spelled out some of the constraints that tend to hold people back: Lack of awareness, lack of knowledge and fear. “We can’t grow unless we get comfortable with being uncomfortable,” she explained. Embracing effective power as leaders within the organization is one of the first ways to start.

ABOUT MAYS BUSINESS SCHOOL
Texas A&M University’s Mays Business School educates more than 5,600 undergraduate, master’s and doctoral students in accounting, finance, management, management information systems, marketing and supply chain management. Mays consistently ranks among the top public business schools in the country for its undergraduate and MBA programs, and for faculty research. The mission of Mays Business School is creating knowledge and developing ethical leaders for a global society.

Categories: Programs