March, 2009 | Mays Impacts

Instead of asking his audience to silence their cell phones before his presentation, Rick Lindner, senior executive vice president and chief financial officer of AT&T, told students at Mays Business School the opposite.

Rick Lindner, senior executive vice president and chief financial officer of AT&T, shared insight on the telecommunications industry and advice from his own successful career with two groups of Mays students.
Rick Lindner, senior executive vice president and chief financial officer of AT&T, shared insight on the telecommunications industry and advice from his own successful career with two groups of Mays students.

“For the record, it never bothers me to hear ring tones when I’m speaking,” he joked. “It’s music to my ears. It sounds like a cash register.” While visiting Mays at Texas A&M University, Lindner presented to two student groups, giving insight to the telecommunications industry and advice from his own successful career.

Students were inquisitive about many aspects of Lindner’s business, from AT&T innovations to the impact of the financial crisis on that company. One of the first questions asked had to do with many students’ favorite gadget: How did AT&T land the iPhone deal?

Lindner was enthusiastic as he talked about the impact that becoming the exclusive service provider for that product has had on AT&T’s wireless business. The partnership came down to a relationship that developed with Apple’s Steve Jobs and Ralph de la Vega, president and CEO of AT&T Mobility, as Apple was shopping for a provider/partner for its latest technology. “It’s been great for us,” he said, mentioning that in the last six months since the iPhone 3G was introduced, four million AT&T customers have adopted the new device.

In this challenging economy, that growth is meaningful, though Lindner does admit that due to the recession, many customers that have both a cell phone and a landline are cancelling one of the services—most often the landline. He predicts that in the next year AT&T’s revenues will hold steady, but not show much growth. “So, is the dividend safe in 2009?” a student asked.

“Absolutely,” says Lindner, acknowledging that though no business is recession proof, the telecom industry is highly resilient, as people will always need to talk to each other.


When it comes to questions of ethics, Lindner told students to remember, “How you react in that moment will define you as a person and it will define your career.”

What’s next for AT&T? What products and services are going to rock the marketplace in the next few years? While Lindner couldn’t be too specific about new tech to be unveiled, he told students to prepare for everything to become wireless, citing GPS devices, e-readers, and AT&T’s U-Verse products as examples of how this is already happening. Expect to see smaller, more powerful devices, and higher-powered networks, too.

While addressing MBA students, Lindner spoke less about the specifics of AT&T’s business, instead giving advice to the future business leaders about being responsible managers, with lessons gleaned from the current financial crisis. “There are three things we can take away from these events,” he told them. First, use your education to build strong business basics that emphasize accurate reporting and rigorous internal controls. Understand financial theory and focus on building long-term value rather than short-term gain in your organization. Second, expect that there will come a time in your career when you’ll be at a moral crossroads. “How you react in that moment will define you as a person and it will define your career,” he said. Third, as leaders in a company, you are responsible for setting the tone for ethical behavior within it.

In his current position, Lindner is responsible for directing financial planning, accounting, tax, auditing, investment management, financing and investor and shareowner relations for AT&T. His prior experience includes leadership positions with Cingular Wireless, Southwestern Bell Telecom, Turco Development Company, and Peat, Marwick, Mitchell & Co.

Categories: Executive Speakers

The Texas A&M University MBA program at Mays Business School is one of 15 graduate schools of business named to The Princeton Review’s “Student Opinion Honors for Business Schools” in the category of accounting. These rankings will appear in the April 2009 issue of Entrepreneur, the nation’s leading publication for and about entrepreneurs.

The Princeton Review, the education services company, measured student opinions about six components of an MBA program: accounting, finance, general management, global management, marketing, and operations. From the 19,000 MBA students at 296 business schools nationwide, the review listed the top 15 (in no particular order) that were most highly rated by students evaluating their MBA program’s preparation in specific categories.

The 80-question survey asked students to report on classroom and campus experiences at their schools and rate their MBA programs in several areas. The Princeton Review tallied the “Student Opinion Honors” lists based on students’ assessments of how well (on a five-point scale) they felt their business school courses had prepared them to succeed in each of the six areas.

The business schools appear in alphabetical order on the lists, and are not ranked one to 15. In addition to appearing in the magazine, the lists are also posted at www.entrepreneur.com/topcolleges and www.princetonreview.com/studentOpinionHonors.aspx.

“This recognition is a tribute to the hard work and dedication of the exceptional accounting faculty who teach in our program,” said Kelli Kilpatrick, director of the Texas A&M MBA program. “Their tireless dedication to our students’ learning builds on our mandatory pre-program preparation in accounting — including an innovative and highly creative Accounting Boot Camp during orientation. We are thrilled to be recognized by our former students for preparing them for success post-graduation.”

About Mays Business School

Mays Business School currently enrolls more than 4,000 undergraduate students and 875 graduate students. The full-time MBA program is highly selective, with an acceptance rate of 26 percent. Currently there are 159 MBA students in their intensive 16-month program.

About The Princeton Review

The Princeton Review (www.princetonreview.com) is an education services company known for its test-prep courses, education programs, admission services, and 165 books published by Random House. Among them are “Best 296 Business Schools” and “Best 174 Law Schools” — each of which include 11 ranking lists of the top 10 schools in the books in various categories based on institutional data and student surveys. The Princeton Review is not affiliated with Princeton University and is not a magazine.

Categories: Programs

With tax season adding stress to the lives of many Americans, the accounting department at Texas A&M University’s Mays Business School is lending a helping hand to low income people in the community—and educating students at the same time. The department was recently recognized by the United Way with their Community Impact Award for the class “Special Topics in Tax—Federal Taxation of Low Income Filers: Socio-Economic Forces,” which requires students to spend 54 volunteer hours assisting low income people to file their federal taxes.

James Benjamin (right) receives an award on behalf of the accounting department from United Way of Brazos Valley CEO Hank Roraback.
James Benjamin (right) receives an award on behalf of the accounting department from United Way of Brazos Valley CEO Hank Roraback.

The class, taught by Adam Meyers, helps students understand federal income tax legislation, its impact on low-income filers, and the socio-economic forces at work. Some learning takes place in the classroom, but the majority of the content is mastered through community service hours helping those that make $50,000 or less to file their taxes.

“We are delighted to have the opportunity to provide an important service to members of our community and, at the same time, to give a real world learning experience to our students,” said James Benjamin, head of the Department of Accounting at Mays. “I appreciate the time that Adam Myers has devoted to the start up of this initiative and I hope that we can significantly expand the number of students participating next year. We were honored to be recognized by the United Way.”

The award was presented to Benjamin at the United Way annual recognition lunch on March 11. “The addition of these students to our community tax-preparing volunteers allowed us to increase the scope of the program,” said Kay Parker, vice president for community impact for United Way of the Brazos Valley. “The Texas A&M Department of Accounting has offered us an invaluable tool: students receiving class credit for helping us help our neighbors in need. The students, who have become IRS certified tax preparers have been awesome and have all done an amazing job helping us out this year.”

This is the first semester that this course has been offered at Mays. The 12 students enrolled volunteer on evenings and weekends in Bryan as well as the neighboring communities of Navasota, Brenham, Centerville, Sanderson Farms, Somerville, and Madisonville.

For more information

Categories: Departments

Though James Royce Whatley ’47 was a brilliant businessman whose successful career spanned four decades, it is not his financial acumen he is remembered for. Instead, Whatley’s legacy is a history of philanthropy that has touched the lives of countless thousands, including students at Texas A&M University. Though he passed away in 2005, Whatley’s contributions and love for Texas A&M University have not stopped. His final gift to his alma mater was recently announced: $2 million for endowed faculty chairs in Mays Business School and the College of Geosciences.

“Mr. Whatley’s dedication to Texas A&M University and Mays Business School has been inspiring,” said Mays Dean Jerry Strawser. “It is former students like him that make Texas A&M University a special school. We are grateful for his generosity to Mays Business School, with this gift that will have a tremendous impact on our faculty.”

Whatley’s association with Texas A&M began in 1943, when he enrolled in the business program and donned his corps uniform. Like many young men of that era, Whatley put his academic pursuits on hold to defend his country in World War II, serving as a Navy merchant ship gunner. When he returned home in 1946, he had a renewed zest for his education. He quickly completed both a bachelors and masters degree in accounting and became a CPA. It was during that time he also met his bride, Elizabeth, with whom he shared 58 happy years. The couple had one son, James, who was lost to leukemia at a young age.

The majority of Whatley’s career was spent with Kaneb Services, a petroleum engineering pipeline company. Over the course of three decades with the firm, Whatley served in a number of roles including CFO, controller, vice president, president, and CEO. He also was involved in commercial banking and investments.

One of Whatley’s proudest achievements was his contribution to the founding of Northeast Texas Community College in Mount Pleasant. Whatley was part of the original board of trustees that secured the funding and set about to build the college from the ground up. “There were a lot of people in that area who could afford to send their kids to college, but there were even more that couldn’t,” said Mrs. Whatley, who says her husband was passionate about providing opportunities for young people to get the education they might not otherwise have access to. Whatley provided many scholarships to students at NTCC; the most promising ones also received funding to achieve advanced degrees at A&M.

Adding to his philanthropic activities, Whatley also enjoyed supporting the arts in East Texas, Texas heritage and history, cancer research, and A&M football. For all of his personal and professional contributions, Mays Business School presented him with an Outstanding Alumni Award in 2002.

Categories: Donors Corner, Executive Speakers, Former Students, Texas A&M

L.C. “Chaz” Neely ’62 credits his A&M education with much of his success over the past three decades. For that reason, Neely and his wife, Trisha, have continued their ongoing support to Mays Business School with a recent gift of $500,000, which will establish an endowed scholarship fund for Business Honors students. These funds will be matched by the Center for Executive Development at Mays to create a $1 million endowment.

Chaz Neely '62
Neely

“I am so grateful for my experience at Texas A&M and the influence it had on my life. I believe one gives back to the organizations that have such impact, and that’s why we chose to make this gift,” said Neely.

“It’s so gratifying to see our former students succeed in the business world,” said Mays Dean Jerry Strawser. “It’s even more wonderful when they take that success and invest it into the success of tomorrow’s business leaders, our current students. The Neelys have always been most generous to Mays Business School and Texas A&M University and we are thankful that they continue to support Mays in such a meaningful way.”

Neely is the founder and chief executive officer of San Antonio Steel Company, the largest business-to-business steel materials distributor in the Southwest. His most recent venture is Alliance Wire & Steel, an international partnership to manufacture wire-reinforcing mesh for concrete. His company also distributes items such as reinforced steel, barbed wire and agricultural and high tensile fencing.

Neely was named 1997 Entrepreneur of the Year by Ernst & Young and in 2005 he was given Mays highest honor, the Outstanding Alumni Award. His business also appeared on the inaugural Aggie 100 list, the ranking of the fastest growing Aggie-owned or —operated businesses in the world. In 2006, the Association of Former students at A&M recognized Neely as a Distinguished Alumni.

Neely says all of his professional success can be traced to the unwavering support of his parents, which enabled him to become the first person in his family to attend college. “If I hadn’t gone to A&M, I might have been working at a service station,” he says, explaining his high school job washing cars and pumping gas at the family-owned business. “A&M had a profound influence on the rest of my life.”

The twin philosophies of bringing passion to his work and integrity to his dealings has driven Neely’s success, he says — in addition to the support of his family and valuable employees. In fact, the first three employees hired by Neely continue to work for the company today.

The Neelys have been married for more than 40 years and have three Aggie children and four granddaughters. They have long been supporters of Mays, most recently pledging $1 million in 2004 to endow a chair in business and in 2003 giving $150,000 in matching funds for a graduate fellowship. They are also generous to the 12th Man Foundation, Association of Former Students, Corps of Cadets, and the Texas A&M Foundation. Neely is a member of the Dean’s Development Council at Mays.

Categories: Donors Corner, Former Students

How does a manager motivate his people to do their best work? In today’s challenging economy, this question is vitally important as companies look for ways to streamline operations. At Boeing, the aerospace and defense system global giant, managers have a multifaceted approach to employee motivation that all comes down to one thing: investing in their people so that every morning, those people get up and want to go to work at Boeing. That was part of the message Rick Stephens, senior vice president of human resources and administration at Boeing, shared with students on a recent visit to Mays Business School at Texas A&M University.

Rick Stephens, Senior VP of Human Resources and Administration at Boeing, talks to Mays students about his company's approach to keeping employees motivated.
Rick Stephens, Senior VP of Human Resources and Administration at Boeing, talks to Mays students about his company’s approach to keeping employees motivated.

Boeing spends millions annually on employee training, including a generous tuition reimbursement program for those going back to school, said Stephens emphasizing the importance of engaging your employee’s heart as well as mind. To that end, Boeing is also dedicated to growing leaders within their company, putting 7,000 employees through their leadership institute each year. “We believe as leaders grow, Boeing grows,” said Stephens.

Stephens has spent 29 years with the company in a variety of progressive management capacities. In his current position he is responsible for all leadership development, training, employee relations, compensation, and benefits, as well as global corporate citizenship and diversity initiatives at the Chicago-based company. It’s a big job: Boeing has a presence in 49 states and 70 countries, employing 160,000 people.

Stephens’ career has taken him around the world, from assignments in Washington D.C. to Australia. He says that one of the most valuable lessons he’s learned about managing people is that even when everyone is speaking English, communication can be challenging. Understanding what people mean by what they say is a vital component of maximizing a team’s potential, he said.

Stephens’ visit was part of a speaker series provided by the Center for Human Resource Management at Mays. Stephens holds a BS in mathematics from the University of Southern California and an MS in computer science from California State University, Fullerton. He is nearing completion of an MBA from the Claremont Graduate School of Business. Prior to his career with Boeing, Stephens was an officer in the U.S. Marine Corps.

Categories: Centers, Executive Speakers

The CEO of a major corporation has been caught manipulating earnings reports. He exits quickly, pushed along by the board, which is eager to keep the news quiet and alert the media only if absolutely necessary. Six months later, the firm revises their earnings forecast and the SEC begins an investigation into the matter, finding that indeed, laws have been broken, but the crime’s perpetrator is long gone. What now? Who faces the consequences for defrauding stakeholders?

Previous research suggests that few of these fraudsters ever see their comeuppance. A new study from researchers at Texas A&M University’s Mays Business School says, however, previous findings were hindered by incomplete data. In actuality, most executives caught cooking the books face ramifications far beyond losing their jobs.

Researchers Jerry Martin, Scott Lee, and Jon Karpoff began their study with all 788 enforcement actions for financial misrepresentation initiated by the SEC and U.S. Department of Justice from 1978-2006. Their analysis addressed three specific questions:

  • Do culpable managers lose their jobs?
  • What factors are associated with job loss?
  • Do they face other consequences, such as debarment from future executive positions, regulatory fines, wealth losses from shareholding, and criminal charges?

Previous studies, including one that Karpoff had published a decade earlier, were constrained by not knowing who the perpetrators of the crime were, therefore they focused on arbitrary groups of executives deemed likely to be held responsible. For example, several studies examined the post-disclosure employment of the firm’s incumbent CEO, chairman, and president.

Martin’s carefully compiled database identified the actual perpetrators associated with each enforcement action, allowing he and coauthors to show that the individual(s) occupying these posts were often not implicated in the crime. In fact, the firm terminated 60 percent of these perpetrators before the investigation was initiated, 80 percent were gone when the investigation was announced to the public, and 90 percent were gone when SEC filed its final proceeding release.

This new study overturned the conventional wisdom that executives associated with fraud generally face few repercussions for their crime. Of 3,164 individuals alleged to have cooked the books in this study, 1,433 were executive employees. Ninety-two percent of these executives were ousted and sixty percent were unceremoniously fired, something that rarely happens in executive departures following poor performance, say the researchers. The SEC debarred 40 percent of these executives from future service as an officer or director of a publicly traded firm.

On average, these executives paid a total of $8.3 million in restitution and fines.  Based on declines in the value of their shareholdings in the firm, the executives’ average losses were between $2 million and $23 million (the estimates depend on boundary assumptions the researchers had to make about the unobservable price paid for the shares). Twenty-eight percent of these executives were indicted, of which only four percent were acquitted. Average jail and probationary sentences were five and three years respectively.

While fraud will be with us always, Martin, Lee and Karpoff show that firm’s internal governance appears to work fairly well. Specifically, they show that the likelihood of the perpetrator being ousted increases with the severity of the shareholders’ losses and monitoring by independent directors, outside blockholders, and non-perpetrator insiders with substantial shareholdings.

Martin is a recent PhD graduate from Mays Business School, now an associate professor of finance at American University. Lee is a professor of finance at Mays, and Karpoff is a professor of finance at University of Washington.

Reference

Jonathan M. Karpoff, D. Scott Lee, and Gerald S. Martin, “The Consequences to Managers for Financial Misrepresentation” Journal of Financial Economics, v88, n2, 193-215 (May 2008).

Categories: Research Notes

Bill R. Brooks ’54 has recently given $50,000 to Mays Business School to establish the Mr. and Mrs. Bill R. Brooks ’54 Dean’s Endowed Scholarship.

Brooks is an active donor, giving funds to a number of Texas A&M University organizations. He is a member of the Texas A&M Legacy Society, Endowed Century Club, an Eppright Distinguished Donor, and has given generously to the Corps of Cadets. “I have a deep feeling that everyone should pay their part of any organization to which they belong,” said Brooks. “So when my grandson, Brooks Keller, was admitted to Mays Business School to join the class of 2013, I became a part of Mays Business School. Now it’s my turn to pay my part and make a fair contribution.”

When Brooks attended Texas A&M, college life was very different. During his days in the Corps of Cadets, business classes were held in converted army barracks located on the northeast side of the campus. Brooks remarked that it was a long walk from the Quad, where corps members resided.

“Through their support of many aspects of Texas A&M University, the Brooks’ generosity has touched the lives of thousands of Aggies,” said Mays Dean Jerry Strawser. “Their most recent gift to Mays Business School will provide many future business leaders with the opportunity to obtain a world-class education.”

Before finishing his college education, Brooks received a commission to the United States Air Force. He returned to Texas A&M to finish his degree, receiving a job before the end of his last semester. Brooks began his 40-year career in the fringe benefit business with Aetna Life Insurance Company, and later formed his own firm, which he led until his retirement in 1998. Additionally, Brooks remained in the Air Force Reserves, retiring in 1978.

Brooks has two daughters, one in the class of 1981, and three grandchildren.

Categories: Donors Corner, Former Students

Not long after your 50th birthday, you turn on the television and realize that you can barely make out the actors’ faces. You have joined the 30 million people worldwide who suffer from age-related macular degeneration (AMD), an increasingly common disease affecting adults ages fifty and older. But don’t be alarmed—this disease won’t be a threat much longer, thanks to a new technology developed at Texas A&M University.

Mays MBA student Brian Mullins speaks during his group's presentation at the 2009 MBA Technology Transfer Challenge.
Mays MBA student Brian Mullins speaks during his group’s presentation at the 2009 MBA Technology Transfer Challenge.

As a member of the Texas A&M University’s Center for New Ventures and Entrepreneurship executive committee, Phil Ralston judges the Technology Transfer Challenge at Mays Business School each year, exploring the latest innovations through presentations made by teams of Mays MBA students. The 2009 event, which recently concluded, challenged students to screen and evaluate new technologies to determine their commercial potential and present their findings to judges. It’s a chance for students to hone their valuation and presentation skills through competition, and a chance for inventors to get noticed.

At the 2006 Tech Transfer Challenge, the first place team introduced Ralston to the technology MC 1101. This product was developed by Dr. George Chiou, a professor of neuroscience and experimental therapeutics at Texas A&M, to treat and prevent dry-AMD, the most common form of the sight-eliminating disease. Dry-AMD breaks down the central portion of the retina, eliminating the vision used when reading, watching TV, and driving.

Ralston saw the potential of MC 1101. With an extensive background in pharmaceuticals and business start-ups, he was the ideal candidate for leading a company focused on commercializing this technology. A few weeks after the competition, Ralston was asked to head up the newly formed company that would market MC 1101, and upon his acceptance of the position, MacuCLEAR was born. Three years later, Ralston is preparing MacuCLEAR to enter clinical trials for its product, hoping to build on the $3.5 million value that the company has already reached.

MacuCLEAR is just one example of a Mays Tech Transfer Challenge technology that has gone on to experience industry success. Each year, viable products leave the challenge to become more than the subject of a learning exercise for MBA students. Ralston remarked that at least three of the technologies introduced at the 2009 event had commercial potential. “The process of the Tech Transfer Challenge is a way of uncovering diamonds in the rough, of creating products and organizations that can lead to great commercial success,” he added.

After a week of intense research, the 2009 Tech Transfer Challenge culminated on February 19, when the student-led teams displayed their product knowledge for more than 100 businesspeople from across Texas who volunteered as judges. Diana Doughty, Jennifer Baugh, Christopher Beavers, Brian Mullins, and Luis Trejo took first prize for their presentation “The Use of Dimples for Thermal Dissipation Enhancement for Microelectronic Heat Sinks.” Their hard work was rewarded, as the first place team was presented with a check for $3,000 from the CNVE and event sponsor Ford. Paragon Innovations sponsored the second place prize of $2,000.

“The process of the Tech Transfer Challenge is a way of uncovering diamonds in the rough, of creating products and organizations that can lead to great commercial success.”

Participation in the challenge is part of the first-year MBA curriculum. While students are allowed to choose their teammates, the technology is assigned randomly. Presentations are not judged on the merits of the technology, but rather the students’ effectiveness at demonstrating its marketability. The depth of their research (which includes market analysis, potential barriers to market entry, and competition), as well as their presentation skills and evidence of product knowledge during the Q&A with judges determines the winners.

First place winners (left to right): Luis Trejo, Diana Doughty, Christopher Beavers, Jennifer Baugh, and Brian Mullins.
First place winners (left to right): Luis Trejo, Diana Doughty, Christopher Beavers, Jennifer Baugh, and Brian Mullins.

Ninety students participated in the 2009 challenge, presenting 18 technologies from within the A&M system.

“Tech Transfer gives current MBA students a chance to apply classroom theory, reach out to industry experts, and polish presentation skills in assessing the market viability of the Texas A&M technology,” said first-place winner Doughty. “The week is an exercise in team building, networking, and overcoming unforeseen obstacles as much as it is about research and actually coming up with an answer.”

Second place went to Mohammed Mazi, Sachit Dwivedi, Katia Delgado, James Applewhite, and Allen Wright for their work with the endotracheal tube sump. Karn Nopany, Jeff Kenner, Kathleen Sui, Julius “A.J.” Oben, and Vince Castro placed third with their wireless event monitoring device.

Categories: Centers, Programs, Students

What do you buy the man who has everything?

How about a personalized ukulele?

To kick off their studies for the spring 2009 semester, 27 MBA students from Texas A&M University’s Mays Business School traveled to Omaha, Nebraska to visit the headquarters of Berkshire-Hathaway and more importantly, spend a day with financial expert Warren Buffett. As the students prepared to meet Buffett, they considered the perfect thank you gift.

Investment expert Warren Buffett tries out the ukulele given to him by Mays MBA students.
Investment expert Warren Buffett tries out the ukulele given to him by Mays MBA students.

“There was really no question that we would give Mr. Buffett a ukulele,” said Mays MBA student Clayton Dean ’10, who knew Buffett to be a collector of the instrument. Dean quickly contacted a ukulele-making company, placing an order for a personalized Mays Business School souvenir, complete with Mays and Texas A&M University logos. While the ukulele was being manufactured, the students brushed up on their knowledge of Buffett with presentations about his personal life, business endeavors, and achievements, deciding on which educated questions they would ask during the question and answer session.

When they arrived in Omaha, the group found that Buffett was very different than they expected. “He’s such an Average Joe…he didn’t have a driver, a personal assistant, or anything,” said Jeff Kenner ’10, president of the Mays MBA Association. After a tour of one of the companies owned by Berkshire-Hathaway, the students ventured to the 15th floor of Kiewit Tower where they awaited a meeting with Buffett in the Cloud Room, which boasts a renowned view of the Omaha skyline.

The Mays group joined MBA students from Dartmouth, Southern Methodist University, University of California at Los Angeles, and Texas Christian University on this visit. Buffett was very appreciative of the gift presented to him by the Mays students. Texas A&M was the only school to offer a token of appreciation for the valuable time spent with the investment expert.

When the question and answer session began, each school was given the chance to ask four questions pertaining to Buffett’s personal and professional history. In response, Buffett offered the students one main piece of advice: stick to what you know. He emphasized the importance of knowing your strengths and weaknesses and applying those to professional opportunities. Buffett’s sense of humor coupled with his vast business knowledge made the visit both entertaining and informational. “I’ve never laughed as hard as I did sitting in the cloud room that day,” said Dean. “Mr. Buffett is so much funnier than any comedian I’ve ever seen, he would crack jokes in between each piece of advice he offered us.”

Buffett is still investing despite the economic turmoil, putting large amounts of his earnings into firms like Goldman-Sachs. Citing his strategy, “never invest for short-term profits,” Buffett remains hopeful that things really aren’t as bad as they seem. “Buffett never focused on his money, and that’s a large contributor to his success,” said Kenner. “He clearly stated that he has achieved every goal he has ever set for himself, and is completely satisfied with where life has taken him. To be able to sit and talk with a man of this stature is just an incredible experience, and the outstanding, professional reputation of the Mays MBA program enabled us to get there.”

Categories: Programs, Students