Julie Orzabal, director of the Executive MBA program at Mays, got the experience of a lifetime recently! Selected under the Navy’s Key Influencers program, Orzabal was able to fly as a backseat rider in the Blue Angel’s Jet Number 7 with Lt. Tyler Davies. She posed mid-air with the Executive MBA Class of 2018 Class Coin.

The Blue Angels celebrate their 70th anniversary this year and are in Houston Oct. 22-23 for the Wings Over Houston Airshow.


Categories: Featured Stories, Mays Business, MBA, News, Staff, Texas A&M

30003351720_4583b600c2_oFew professionals can say they’ve been with the same company their entire career. But Gina Luna ’95, chairman of JPMorgan Chase in the Houston region, is an exception.

Luna has been with JPMorgan Chase since she graduated from Texas A&M in 1995. On her visit to Mays Business School, she had lunch with Business Honors students and shared how she has navigated such a large corporation for so many years. For more than 20 years, her willingness to plunge into new challenges and optimism about new relationships has guided her through positions in finance, recruiting, operations and marketing.

Luna leads the Middle Market Banking business and is active in recruiting, mentoring and leadership development within the organization. “I’ve held many challenging but rewarding roles at JPMorgan Chase,” Luna said, “Each one has taught me something new and has been a wonderful opportunity to build relationships.”

She believes the challenge is always worth it because of her coworkers. “Every day I get to work with such high-caliber, intelligent individuals.”

Her career with JPMorgan Chase started with a summer internship before her senior year of college. The next year she graduated from Texas A&M with a bachelor’s of business administration degree with a double major in finance and management, and went to work full-time for JPMorgan Chase.

But Luna wouldn’t stay an analyst for long. Within a few years she was offered an opportunity to lead entry-level recruiting for the organization. “I had no experience in recruiting, but I remember it sounded like an interesting and unique opportunity.” Luna accepted the offer with enthusiasm and found that she really enjoyed building relationships with new recruits and colleagues across the Firm.

She later moved into a management role overseeing analysts and associates, many of whom she had recruited. Next she moved into leadership positions in investment banking and commercial banking. Prior to her current role, she was chief marketing officer for Chase Commercial Banking, for which she directed marketing and communications for the national commercial banking business.

When students asked how she was able to adapt to such diverse roles within the company, she said the key was to be open to what others might teach her. “I was often surrounded by people who had far more knowledge and experience than I did,” she said. “But I had to ask myself, ‘What can I learn from others in this situation?’”

Even in leadership, she prefers a consultative style. “I always try to involve others in the decision-making process. Even if the final decision is my responsibility, I value others’ contributions.”

Business Honors major Will Locke ’20 said he found the discussion extremely enjoyable. “I learned that crafting relationships in truly invaluable in the business world,” he said. “Not only do they provide you with meaningful friendships, they also provide excellent opportunities for advancement.”

Emily Clark ’20 said she was inspired to make some personal changes. “Going forward, I will make my values a priority and make an effort to develop relationships in school as well as my future career.”

Categories: Alumni, Business Honors, Departments, Executive Speakers, Featured Stories, Finance, Management, Mays Business, News, Programs, Texas A&M

After seeing how much their daughter Grace learned in a new “Strategic Philanthropy” course at Mays Business School, Wil and Jennifer VanLoh donated money to fund the next two courses. A portion of their $140,000 gift to Mays through the Texas A&M Foundation will provide grants for students to distribute to local nonprofits through the course, while remaining funds will help cover operating costs.


Philanthropy is a way of life for the VanLoh family – from left, Grace, Mary, Wil, Jennifer and Sarah.

The course that debuted last spring gives undergraduate students at Mays first-hand experience in the world of nonprofit work. In the first program of its kind to be offered at an SEC school and the first at a business school, students get the chance to learn about various facets of philanthropy, hear from philanthropic leaders and experience the grant-making process from a foundation’s perspective.

Wil VanLoh, founder and CEO of Quantum Energy Partners, said his family routinely holds meetings to make philanthropic decisions for their family foundation. “My wife and I are intentional about including our kids in our decisions,” he said. “We think being good stewards of the resources we are given is a big responsibility, and something we don’t think a lot of people take seriously enough.

“We believe modeling generosity for our kids is one of the greatest gifts we can give them as it helps them understand that one is more blessed to give than to receive. We get tremendous joy out of giving and we want them to experience that at a young age to set the tone for the rest of their life.”

VanLoh said he was impressed with the course, which he said should be offered across the university – and not just at the business school. “This is an all-around great set of skills for these students, and it benefits the community they live in while they’re attending college, so it has a significant ripple effect,” he said. …Read more

Categories: Business Honors, Featured Stories, Mays Business, News, Programs, Students, Texas A&M

preview-upload_card-16186_088Keeping the focus on the patients is the best strategy for succeeding in the healthcare industry, and person-to-person interaction is a powerful tool in any industry, Humana President and CEO Bruce Broussard ’84 said recently at Mays Business School. Broussard shared life stories and advice with more than 400 students and community members on Sept. 29. [Watch the full video of his presentation.]

“At the end of the day, people are motivated by people, not by technology,” he said. “Someone who has walked that path before is more influential than either or a nurse or a doctor.” Also, those working in health care are more motivated when they are working with patients than when they are removed from interacting with them, he said.

Broussard, a Texas A&M University graduate in finance and accounting, has a wide range of executive leadership experience in publicly traded and private organizations. He started his career as a consultant at Arthur Anderson, then was treasurer and CFO of various public companies and CEO of U.S. Oncology before joining Humana. …Read more

Categories: Alumni, Featured Stories, Finance, Mays Business, News, Texas A&M

Mays Business School’s Full-Time MBA team, representing Texas A&M University, tied for first place with the University of Central Florida at the Prospanica Case Competition.

To fulfill its mission to empower Hispanic professionals, Prospanica hosts an annual conference and career expo attended by MBA students across the nation. The students’ hard work researching and compiling their solution were recognized at the Prospanica Gala in Houston at the end of the conference and career expo on Sept. 30.

The competition was hosted in partnership with PepsiCo. The students were tasked with helping PepsiCo leverage new and emerging technologies to drive consumer engagement, sales and improve operating efficiencies in global markets.


Teams from across the country were given the case in advance and prepared a written solution that was sent to the judges. The Texas A&M team was among the four finalists, selected from the written submission, to present during the conference and career expo. The other finalists were Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Houston. The finalists presented before a panel of judges from PepsiCo.  Team members from Mays were Arko Basu, Emily Klein, Alec Krance and Thomas Sovereign.

The Mays MBA program started several initiatives this year focused on problem solving. Mays students participated in two internal case competitions this year – one at the end of orientation and one focused on specific functional areas in mid-September. Through rigorous career management preparation, Mays MBAs have received 18+ hours of case training from MBACASE and will sit for a case certification exam at the end of October.

Program Director Shannon Deer said, “We are excited to see our students excelling in the problem solving, team work, presentation, and technical skills our faculty and staff work so hard to deliver. Our students had an excellent opportunity to represent Mays and themselves in front of many national employers and we are so proud they rose to the occasion as Aggies are known to do.”



Categories: Faculty, Featured Stories, Mays Business, MBA, News, Students, Texas A&M

Mays Business School graduates Lisa Burton and Ann Strouhal have been named among the American Business Women’s Association (ABWA)’s 2017 Top Ten Business Women of the Year.

The Top Ten Business Women of ABWA honors women around the country who achieve excellence in their careers, education and community involvement. The women will be recognized at ABWA’s National Women’s Leadership Conference in Chattanooga, Tenn., in October. One will be chosen as the Top Business Woman of the Year.


Burton has worked for the Texas A&M University Career Center for four years with a focus on career advising juniors and seniors in Mays Business School. She earned her Master of Science in Marketing from Texas A&M’s Mays Business School in 2010 and her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Radio-TV-Film from Sam Houston State University in 1992. Burton also completed a Graduate Certificate in Non-Profit Management from The Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M.

Burton is a member of the Leading Women Express Network (LWEN) of ABWA. She has served on LWEN’s board in several roles, including VP of Membership, VP of Hospitality and VP of Networking. She is currently serving as the advisor for the Texas A&M Student Chapter of ABWA and President-Elect of the Brazos County A&M Club.


Strouhal is owner of Strouhal & Associates in Pearland, Texas, and holds both the Professional in Human Resources (PHR) certification and the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) Professional certification. Strouhal received a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Texas A&M University in 1981 and a Master of Business Administration in HR from the University of Houston Clear Lake in 2012.

Strouhal is also actively involved in her community as a member of the Pearland Chamber of Commerce, the Daughters of the American Revolution and St. Helen Catholic School Board of Directors. She is a member of the South East Express Network of ABWA.


Categories: Featured Stories, Former Students, Mays Business, News, Staff, Texas A&M

TIAS Spotlight

From Texas A&M Today
(NOTE: V. Kumar will be working with Mays faculty researchers)
The Texas A&M University Institute for Advanced Study (TIAS) has announced its 2016-17 class of Faculty Fellows—10 distinguished scientists and scholars who are nationally or internationally renowned for conducting groundbreaking research in chemistry, mathematics, engineering, medicine, astronomy, atmospheric science, marketing or law.The newest class of Faculty Fellows includes members of the United States’ National Academies as well as representatives from major scientific or professional organizations in the U.S., the United Kingdom, Canada and Germany.Each Faculty Fellow will partner with one or more of the departments offering graduate degrees housed in Texas A&M’s 16 colleges or schools or at Texas A&M’s branch campus in Galveston. The Institute provides fellowships for graduate students to work with Faculty Fellows, as well as funding to support visiting graduate students and post-doctoral researchers affiliated with the Faculty Fellows.A long-time champion of the Institute, Chancellor John Sharp of The Texas A&M University System provided the funds that launched TIAS in 2010. “The talent that the TIAS program brings to Texas A&M is causing everyone else in higher education to take notice,” Chancellor Sharp said. “It was money well spent to enrich the academic experience with such world-class scholars and researchers.”

TIAS Founding Director John Junkins

President Michael K. Young of Texas A&M University said, “This fifth class of TIAS Faculty Fellows offers truly outstanding credentials. In collaboration with our exemplary faculty, these Fellows will sustain the extraordinary trajectory of TIAS, inspire truly transformative intellectual experiences among our students, and advance the international reputation of the Texas A&M research enterprise.”

Provost and Executive Vice President Karan Watson said, “Each of these remarkable individuals offers a strong portfolio of world-class accomplishments in their fields. As we have seen with the previous four classes of Faculty Fellows, the research that will emerge from their collaborations with our own outstanding faculty and students will be exciting and extraordinary.”

Each year, the Institute selects its Faculty Fellows from among top scholars who have distinguished themselves through outstanding professional accomplishments or significant recognition. Former classes have included two Nobel laureates, a Wolf Prize recipient, a recipient of the Hubble Medal in Literature for Lifetime Achievement, a recipient of the National Medal of Science, an awardee of the National Medal of Technology and Innovation, a recipient of the highest award in Architecture and a two-time recipient of the State Prize of Russia.

TIAS Founding Director John L. Junkins said, “This fifth class of 10 outstanding scholars have intellectual strengths centered in six colleges, however their scholarship impacts many disciplines. These Fellows being in residence afford our faculty and students extraordinary opportunities to collaborate one-on-one with top people in their fields. We expect game-changing and life-changing outcomes as a consequence.”

The Institute will induct the Faculty Fellows Class of 2016-17 at its annual gala in early 2017.

  • Christopher C. Cummins, Henry Dreyfus Professor of Chemistry, Massachusetts Institute of Technology – Among the most innovative synthetic chemists of his generation, known for his impact on small molecule activation, Cummins is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a corresponding member


    Christopher C. Cummins

    Portrait of William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of Mathematics and Applied and Computational Mathematics, Ingrid Daubechies

    Ingrid Daubechies


    Gerald Galloway


    Huajian Gao


    Maryellen Giger


    Robert Kennicutt Jr.


    Charles E. Kolb


    V. Kumar


    William M. Sage


    Thomas S. Ulen

    of Germany’s Göttingen Academy of Sciences and Humanities. Cummins will collaborate with faculty-researchers from the College of Science and the College of Engineering.

  • Ingrid Daubechies, James B. Duke Professor of Mathematics and Electrical and Computer Engineering, Duke University – One of the world’s most cited mathematicians recognized for her study of the mathematical methods that enhance image-compression technology, Daubechies is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Daubechies will collaborate with faculty-researchers from the College of Science and the College of Engineering.
  • Gerald Galloway, Glenn L. Martin Institute Professor of Engineering, University of Maryland – Regarded as the leading flood-management expert in the United States, he is known for his work on the Galloway Report, a federal study that focused on the Great Flood of 1993 along the Mississippi and Missouri rivers. Galloway is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and the National Academy of Public Administration. He will collaborate with faculty-researchers at Texas A&M University at Galveston.
  • Huajian Gao, Walter H. Annenberg Professor of Engineering, Brown University – Known for his research into micromechanics, the basic principles that control mechanical properties and behaviors of materials in both engineering and biology, Gao is a member of the National Academy of Engineering. He will collaborate with faculty-researchers in the College of Engineering.
  • Maryellen Giger, A.N. Pritzker Professor of Radiology and College Vice-Chair for Basic Science Research, The University of Chicago – An expert in computer-aided diagnosis as well as digital signal and image processing, Giger is a member of the National Academy of Engineering. She will collaborate with faculty-researchers in the College of Engineering as well as with scientists and clinicians in the Texas A&M Health Science Center, the Houston Medical Center and local hospitals.
  • Robert Kennicutt Jr., Plumian Professor of Astronomy and Experimental Philosophy, University of Cambridge – Best known for his work on the Kennicutt-Schmidt law, which relates gas density to star-formation rates, Kennicutt is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a Fellow of the Royal Society in the United Kingdom. Kennicutt will collaborate with faculty-researchers in the College of Science.
  • Charles E. Kolb, President and Chief Executive Officer, Aerodyne Research Inc. – A leader of one of the world’s most prominent research institutions specializing in atmospheric chemistry, air quality and climate, Kolb is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and a recipient of the Alexander von Humboldt Research Award. Kolb will collaborate with faculty-researchers in the College of Geosciences.
  • V. Kumar, Regents’ Professor and the Richard and Susan Lenny Distinguished Chair Professor of Marketing, Georgia State University – An acknowledged expert on marketing research methods and customer relationship management strategy, Kumar has been recognized with eight lifetime achievement awards. Kumar will collaborate with faculty-researchers in the Mays Business School.
  • William M. Sage, James R. Dougherty Chair for Faculty Excellence in Law and Vice Provost for Health Affairs, The University of Texas at Austin – Nationally known as an expert in national health care reform including market principles driving access to health care, Sage is a member of the National Academy of Medicine. Sage will collaborate with faculty-researchers in the School of Public Health, the College of Medicine, the Bush School of Government and Public Service and the School of Law.
  • Thomas S. Ulen, Swanlund Chair Emeritus at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Professor Emeritus of Law at the University of Illinois College of Law – Author of pioneering textbooks and journal articles that examine a variety of issues related to economics, legal scholarship and legal education. Ulen serves on the Board of Directors and is a founding member of the American Law and Economics Association. He will collaborate with faculty-researchers in the School of Law and the College of Liberal Arts.



Categories: Faculty, Featured Stories, Mays Business, News, Research Notes, Texas A&M

In the first CurrentlyMAYS session, the four deans of Mays Business School discussed current events from their various perspectives. Most of their conversation with students centered on a case study using Mays as a business model. The players were Dean Eli Jones as CEO, Executive Associate Dean Duane Ireland as COO, and Associate Dean for Graduate Programs Arvind Mahajan and Associate Dean for Undergraduate Programs Martha Loudder as division heads.

currently-maysModerator Sandra Lampo, a clinical associate professor of marketing, said any successful business requires all the various disciplines. Jones concurred, and said, “This is one of the most complicated businesses I have encountered. There is usually a clear line of sight to the ultimate customer. What makes this business exciting and a challenge is there is not clear single customer.”

Some customers include the Texas Legislature, which helps fund the school financially; students who are enrolled; parents who are invested; prospective employers; faculty and staff who support the programs; the Texas A&M University campus; and the state of Texas.

“Professors and administrators are in the business of knowledge,” Loudder said. “In our business, we create new knowledge through research. Each of us start as professors with a narrow, technical expertise in our own fields. But as we advance in our careers and moved into administrative positions, we have understand the big picture and broaden our horizons to better understand other fields.”

The deans advised students that they can stay current by keeping with news outlets such as The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times. Mahajan suggested reading news from outlets that give different political perspectives than his own. “It will force you to challenge your own biases, opinions and beliefs.”

Ireland added: “Find one or two news sources in which you have great confidence and read those often. Soon you’ll pick up on the cadence of the writing and be able to efficiently process the things you are reading.”

Ireland also recommended that the students increase the breadth of individuals with whom they interact. “In management, we talk a lot about strong and weak ties. We value strong ties as our close relationships with others, but even weak ties can be valuable opportunities through which you can have sporadic interaction with people different from yourself.”

Junior finance major Andrew Hitscherich said he appreciated that the deans took time to share their wisdom with students and their vision for transformational leaders at Mays. “I’m looking forward to seeing where Mays is headed,” he said.

Senior PPA and business student Sarah Burns said the deans inspired her and other students to pursue a global, well-rounded mindset. She said she appreciated the cross-functional education at Mays. “We have incredible leaders at all levels behind the scenes of Mays’ success,” she said. “It was really special that the deans took the time to answer our questions, ask for our input, and discuss with us one on one.”

Categories: Departments, Faculty, Featured Stories, Mays Business, News, Students, Texas A&M

Mays Business School advanced in annual rankings by U.S. News & World Report of undergraduate business programs nationwide. It moved up two places — to 17th among public universities and 27th overall—in the “Best Business Programs” section of the magazine’s 2017 rankings released Tuesday (Sept.13).

In addition to moving up in national rankings, Mays is a leader among business schools in Texas—and no school in the Southeastern Conference (SEC) ranks higher, notes Mays Dean Eli Jones.

He says that in concert with the strengthening of Mays’ academic programs and related activities, creating a greater awareness of the school is a top priority. “We have many areas of distinction here at Mays, and we are determined to tell the world about them,” he points out. “We already have a strong foothold in Texas, and we are known nationally for our innovation and our impact. We are stepping up our efforts to play a transformational role in business research, education and practice.”

Mays’ peer assessment score – the measure the magazine uses to rank business schools – is at 3.6. The top peer assessment score possible is 5. U.S. News ranks undergraduate business programs accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) based solely on surveys of business school deans and senior faculty. Participants were asked to rate the quality of programs with which they were familiar on a scale of 1 (marginal) to 5 (distinguished). The undergraduate business rankings are based solely on this peer survey. To learn more about the rankings and methodology, visit http://colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-colleges/rankings/business.

In its “Great Schools, Great Prices” category of universities, U.S. News cites Texas A&M University as one of the two top public universities nationally. It is first among public institutions in Texas in that assessment, which combines cost with quality of education.

The magazine’s annual rankings were announced Tuesday in advance of publication of its “Best Colleges” guidebook for 2017.

Categories: Featured Stories, Mays Business, News, Rankings, Texas A&M

The Petroleum Ventures Program has kicked off its inaugural semester with 25 petroleum engineering students, several finance students and a 23-member advisory board.

The interdisciplinary partnership between the business and engineering schools at Texas A&M University started with a $12 million gift from Anthony Bahr ’91 and Jay Graham ’92, who gave $6 million each to the finance (FINC) and petroleum engineering (PETE) departments. The petroleum engineering graduates own WildHorse Resources in Houston. Their goal is to teach finance skills to PETE students and petroleum engineering skills to FINC students.

Anthony Bahr

Anthony Bahr

“I’d say we are off to a good start, and the advisory board members are excited at what is to come,” said Detlef Hallermann, a Mays Business School clinical professor who oversees the program. “What I am hearing from the board is that it’s been a long time coming. We’ve made the first step.  Now the board is going to help us look at what we are doing and provide direction for where we wish to go next.”

Students wrote multiple analytical analyses, reviewed by advisory board members prior to being  accepted into the program. Approximately 100 students attended the informational sessions and more than 60 students applied.

Princewill Imouokhome, a sophomore pursuing a bachelor’s in finance, said he was “immediately both interested and curious” about the program and the current state of the oil and gas industry’s impact on it. He applied because he wants to be involved in the energy industry.

“I saw an opportunity to gain both a competitive edge and to leave my comfort zone,” he said. “In my time in the program I have already seen a change in the way I see many things that a contingent upon the energy industry. I hope to gain knowledge, new perspectives on problem solving, and exposure to situations that force me to grow as an individual and a professional.”

Bahr said he is happy to hear about the popularity of the program. “I’m thrilled to welcome the inaugural class of business and engineering students into the Petroleum Ventures Program, and excited these students have made a significant commitment to their future careers in the energy business,” he said.

When fully implemented, the program will offer a Certificate in Petroleum Ventures for both PETE and FINC students. Hallermann is also director of the Trading, Risk & Investments Program (TRIP) and the Reliant Trading Center.

The program will have a profound impact on Mays at many levels, Hallermann said. It provides :

  • Increased visibility of Mays programs
  • Integration of engineering students in Mays undergraduate classes – mostly in finance, but also in other disciplines
  • Strategic importance
  • Groundwork for other programs

The advisory board’s first meeting is Oct. 6-7.

Categories: Centers, Departments, Donors Corner, Faculty, Featured Stories, Finance, Mays Business, News, Programs, Students, Texas A&M