Eduniversal classifies and highlights masters and MBA programs which prepare and graduate the most competent students into the global workforce by surveying current graduating students and recruiters. Their methodology takes into account the reputation of the program, the salary of the employed graduates, and the graduates’ satisfaction with the program. …Read more
Ronnie Hale Sr. didn’t attend Texas A&M, but he was always an Aggie to the core. He put his four children through Texas A&M. Five of his grandchildren so far – with another on the way – are also Aggies.
Hundreds attended Hale’s funeral in March 2017, where Ronnie Hale Jr. recalled many memories and spoke of his father’s love for his wife of 58 years – Kay – and their children Ronnie Jr. ’82, Randy ’85, Richie ’88, and Kerri ’92.
To honor Ronnie Sr. after his death, his son and daughter-in-law Randall B. “Randy” and Tracy Hale are donating $250,000 toward renaming the Department of Accounting
for longtime department head Jim Benjamin.
The Benjamin campaign recently reached its goal of $10 million in commitments, and the Hale family wanted to help it come to fruition. …Read more
Mays Business School at Texas A&M University received its five-year accreditation renewal this week from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.
The renewal includes a separate accreditation of the Department of Accounting, making the college one of 186 worldwide certified in both overall business and accounting programs.
Dean Eli Jones was notified Tuesday, May 1, 2018, of the reaccreditation. “AACSB accreditation is the most rigorous international accreditation a business school can earn. Our engaged stakeholders (faculty, staff and advisory board members) push us to reach this very high standard of quality,” he said. “I am proud that Mays Business School has continuously improved in terms of innovation and impact, which is reflected in our maintaining this accreditation over many years.”
Advancing the world’s prosperity
Department of Accounting head Jim Benjamin added, “We were delighted to be one of the first 13 schools to achieve AACSB accounting accreditation in 1982. Maintaining our status challenges our faculty to pursue excellence and continuous improvement.”
To prepare for the evaluation, Mays officials submitted voluminous documents late last year about the school’s programs and achievements. Mays educates more than 6,400 undergraduate, master’s, and doctoral students in accounting, business honors, finance, management, management information systems, marketing and supply chain management. The vision of Mays Business School is to advance the world’s prosperity by being a vibrant learning organization, creating impactful knowledge, and developing transformational leaders.
A peer review team visited the school, looking specifically at accomplishments since the previous visit five years earlier – including the launch and activation of a new Strategic Plan and consistently high rankings among the top public business schools in the country for its undergraduate and MBA programs, and for faculty research. The team of deans and professors visited Mays in February to interview faculty, staff, outside business partners, alumni, and students about the mission and vision of the college. They rated faculty and curricula and ensured all the programs in the college met quality standards relating to strategic management of resources, interactions between faculty and students, and student success in terms of achieving learning goals.
An intense peer-review process
The Continuous Improvement Review Committee and the Accounting Accreditation Committee concurred with the peer review teams’ recommendations for extension of accreditation of the business and accounting degree programs. The Board of Directors concurred.
Stephanie M. Bryant, executive vice president and chief accreditation officer of AACSB International, extended congratulations to Mays Business School on extending its accreditation. “The intense peer-review process confirms a school’s continued focus on excellence in all areas, including teaching, research, curricula development, and student learning. Mays Business School’s dedication to delivering high-quality business education will create the next generation of great leaders.”
The AACSB sets the highest standards of excellence, and it has been accrediting business colleges since 1916. It provides quality assurance, business education intelligence, and professional development services to more than 1,500 member organizations in 90 countries and 810 accredited business schools in 53 countries. There are more than 16,000 business schools around the world.
The 4th Annual KPMG Fraud Case Competition Final Round was held on May 1 at Mays Business School. The three teams competing in the Final Round had advanced from the Preliminary Round held there the prior week. Final Round judging was facilitated by Travis Canova, director, and Kelsey Wright from the Houston office of KPMG’s U.S. Forensic Advisory Practice. Executive Professor of Accounting Tim Torno coordinated the competition.
The Final Round case competition participants from Mays Business School included:
Joshua Brookins Elizabeth Chavez Sabra Jasinki
Alexandra Garefalos Reagan Farmer Rebekah Land
Tara Schwehm Alicia Hays Morgan Liptoi
Kristine Sebastian Camden McKenney Andy Schultz
Carissa Van Beek Temiloluwa Taiwo Jake Shields
The first-place team is pictured below (from left to right): Andy Schultz, Travis Canova (KPMG), Rebekah Land, Morgan Liptoi, Kelsey Wright (KPMG), Sabra Jasinki, and Jake Shields.
The Mays Business School Department of Accounting and Professional Program (PPA) recognized several former students for their outstanding achievements and continued support of the accounting program at Texas A&M University. The recipients were recognized at a dinner in College Station with faculty and peers on April 25.
Accounting Hall of Honor
The Accounting Hall of Honor recognizes annually those who have contributed to the growth and success of the accounting program over an extended period of time. The 2018 honorees are Richard Hanus ’76, Stephen Parker ’88, Robert Penshorn ’89, and Jack Suh ’97. Hanus is a retired EY partner, Parker is an assurance energy partner at PwC, Penshorn is a partner at Deloitte & Touche LLP, and Suh is a partner at Deloitte and the first PPA graduate to be inducted.
Lifetime Achievement Award
The Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes a PPA graduate whose collective body of work has resulted in a substantial incremental change in the business community, the accounting profession, and/or the lives of those that practice accounting. The 2018 recipient is Jimmy Smith ’97, COO and CFO of FCD Holdings which operates the FC Dallas soccer team, Toyota Stadium in Frisco, and the National Soccer Hall of Fame.
Smith’s life reflects his passion for sports, and the opportunities sports provides to the community, and to the growth and development of the individual. He is treasurer and sits on the FC Dallas Foundation Board, which is targeted at helping underserved youth through sports. He lives out his passion of service through sports by coaching his own sons in soccer and basketball. Smith lives in Dallas with his wife and three sons.
Rising Star Award
The Rising Star Award recognizes a recent PPA graduate who is making a substantial impact on society through business acumen, exceptional leadership, or entrepreneurial success. The 2018 recipient is R.T. Dukes, research director for Wood Mackenzie, a global energy research and consultancy group.
Dukes is a visible media presence for Wood Mackenzie in places like Bloomberg and Forbes, a daily presence on Twitter, and host of Wood Mackenzie’s Soundcloud podcast, “Crude for Thought.” He contributes to profit as well through his consulting roles and his valuation and due diligence work for the firm. He is an advisor to company boards and executives and a regular speaker at international industry conferences. Dukes lives in Houston with his wife and three children.
A group of high school juniors spent the past weekend attending “A Day at Mays” to learn more about their options as not only potential Mays Business School students, but also as prospective Texas A&M University students. Of a select group of students invited, 35 visited campus.
The overriding goal of the “A Day at Mays” program was to increase the number of students from under-represented groups who pursue degrees at Mays Business School. By doing so, Mays hopes to make a major contribution to the larger objective of ensuring a workplace that is not only diversified, but also staffed by highly skilled employees who are prepared to work in a global and multicultural environment.
Photo credit: Corey D. Stone ’13
The activities began on Friday, April 20, and extended through Saturday, April 21. A dinner on Friday provided the high school students to converse with other prospective students, family members, current students, and Mays faculty at the George Hotel in College Station. After dinner, prospective students paired up with current students in Business Student Council (BSC) and Multicultural Association of Business Students (MABS) and participated in a fun evening at Grand Central Station, where prospective students were able to build connections and ask questions about real “college” life at Texas A&M.
The next day, the students were able to take a walking tour of the Texas A&M campus and then moved to the Cocanougher Center to learn from Mays faculty and staff. Undergraduate recruiter Corey Stone shared with the students the application process for entrance into Texas A&M. He offered honest advice on earning college credit in high school and the requirements for the students to work for. “When in doubt, email me,” Stone said.
After Stone’s presentation, a panel of current PPA students shared their knowledge of their different track decisions and experiences on their internships. They described the opportunities given in public accounting and explained why they chose to do the PPA program, followed by a question-and-answer session for both parents and prospective students. Students were then given a brief overview of the PPA program by Casey Kyllonen, followed by brief overviews of the rest of the departments in Mays.
At the end of the day, prospective students attended an Opportunity Fair where students could ask questions about opportunities at Mays. This provided a convenient way for participants to learn one-on-one about their specific interests and options, after a packed weekend of group discussions and panels.
The program was sponsored by the PPA program at Mays in conjunction with
PricewaterhouseCoopers. The Profession Program at Mays is an integrated program that allows participants to complete a bachelor’s of business administration in accounting and a master’s of science in one of five business disciplines in just five years.
Third-year accounting doctoral student Jennifer Glenn has faced several obstacles in her life that have not only taught her how to be resilient, but have also shown her the power of perseverance.
Her inspiring fight against adversity led to her selection for the 2018 Community of Scholars Unsung Hero Award, an award created by the Texas A&M University Office of Graduate and Professional Studies (OGAPS) to recognize current graduate students who have faced and overcome difficult life experiences during their time at Texas A&M.
Glenn’s fight against adversity began in elementary school, when she developed a severe stutter. She was told by many of her teachers that she would never find a good job due to her inability to speak without stuttering. This did not set her back, however, because she still earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in accounting and her CPA license, despite her speech impediment. “I refuse to let anything stand in my way when it comes to accomplishing my goals,” Glenn said.
Years later, during her second year in the Ph.D. program at Texas A&M, Glenn learned that she needed brain surgery to remove a brain tumor that had been growing at an alarmingly fast rate and was feared to be cancer. Glenn had brain surgery six months before her comprehensive exam, which is required before a Ph.D. student can begin working on their dissertation.…Read more
Rapidly changing technology is causing many businesses to reevaluate the services they provide. EY is no different. The multinational services firm, which is one of the “Big Four” accounting firms, is striving to be proactive in dealing with the challenges caused by technological advances and outsourcing while also finding ways to help its clients succeed in these evolving times. This introspection also is leading EY to identify the qualities and skills of the employees who will be needed in the future.
A number of EY executives addressed the effect of disruption on the business world in a March 22 presentation to Mays Business School students and faculty. This presentation was part of Mays’ EY Day, which celebrated the corporation’s recognition as Mays’ 2018 Corporate Partner of the Year.
A positive take on disruption
Outsourcing and rapidly changing technology, including bots and automation, are creating a rapidly shifting business landscape. “Disruption is everywhere and is influencing everything. For most people, disruption makes everybody uncomfortable because it’s the unknown,” said Anneliese Schumacher, EY’s Southwest Campus recruiting leader. “However, I believe disruption is going to be incredibly positive. You think about the different revolutions – economic, political, social – and they all started with some kind of disruption.”
Companies need to continually look for different ways to engage employees in order to compete in today’s rapidly changing world. Multinational professional services firm EY, which was named Mays Business School’s 2018 Corporate Partner of the Year, uses a number of strategies to involve and retain employees and improve their performance.
As part of Mays’ EY Day on March 22, EY Southwest Talent Leader Allison Allen spoke to graduate students who are studying human resource management. During her presentation, Allen described the importance of flexible scheduling, mentoring, sponsorships, and employee engagement to EY’s efforts.
Allen, who leads a 48-member HR team at the global services company, stressed that the company’s business agenda and people agenda need to be the same thing. “You always need people to drive your business agenda so you need to think like a business person. You need to make sure that human resources is always at the table so that you know what the business agenda is and are able to drive it through your people.”
She is a strong advocate for always communicating the reasons for business decisions to employees. “We often tell people what to do, but we don’t always tell them why it is important,” she said.
Allen noted that the Southwest Region has taken this approach one step further through actively seeking employee feedback and engagement. “When we are developing our HR strategy, we’re going to co-develop it with the people who work for this company and they’re going to help us implement it and we’re going to collaborate,” she said. “The insight that I’ve gotten from that has been mind-blowing in terms of the humility of thinking what I and the HR team would have done on our own if we had not partnered with our clients.”
She credits this level of employee engagement with EY’s Southwest Region consistently having higher employee satisfaction ratings than the company’s other North and South America regions.
Helping employees find balance
One of EY’s primary strategies to energize and retain its workforce is through offering a flexible work schedule. “With the advent of the iPhone and all these devices where you’re always connected, the days when people’s personal and professional lives are starkly different are gone,” said Allen, who has 18 years of experience in HR. “If you don’t allow people to do what they love to do and do it in a way that’s comfortable to them, you’re not going to be able retain them.”
Allen, who was named EY’s 2017 Working Mother of the Year, has personally experienced the benefits of workplace flexibility. “One of the things that really channels me and gives me the focus to work really, really hard is the flexibility that EY gives me to be with my family,” she said. “One of the things that I’ve found in myself and seen in our firm is that when people have the ability to do what they love personally – whether it’s running a marathon, raising children, or volunteering in the community – and you give them the opportunity to do that activity fully, they are so thankful, appreciative, and renewed that they do a much better job day-to-day.”
An empowering culture
Allen also believes that successful organizations offer a sense of belonging and pride for its staff. She pointed to one of her own defining experiences: a college internship at Southwest Airlines. “(I appreciated the opportunity) to work for a company that is similar to Texas A&M in the fact that there is tremendous pride in working there and an incredibly strong culture built on a sense of belonging,” she said. “You are looking at how that culture and sense of belonging empowers people to do the very best job they can do every day. I saw the power of that and what it can do for people.”
She noted that EY is building a culture that not only encourages a sense of belonging, but also provides employees with new professional challenges. “People in the future are going to go to a job based on the experiences they’re going to get; they’re not getting bored because they are challenged and being inspired,” Allen said.
Allen believes that mentors and sponsors are critical in helping employees, especially women and minorities, reach their potential. “A mentor is like a counselor who is giving you career insight and guidance. They are there to help you move through different stages in your career and help you achieve what you want to achieve,” she said. “A sponsor is in a position of influence and is willing to use that influence or their political capital on your behalf.”
She believes that companies need to place more emphasis on engaging sponsors to help employees. “You can give somebody all the great advice, insight and tutelage possible, but if you don’t give them the opportunity to implement that information, then a lot of those lessons are for naught,” she said, adding that sponsors also often can see the person’s talent and identify new opportunities before the employee does. “Sponsors know your worth when you don’t know it.”
A bright future for HR
Allen is optimistic about the future role that corporate human resources can play in making employees’ lives more meaningful. “If we take out some of the mundane day-to-day things that people do, whether that’s data entry or some of the routine things that a software program can do, that actually gives humans the opportunity to do what they were born to do, which is to connect,” she said. “We have that opportunity now more than ever before in the history of the world. What could happen? It’s an incredible opportunity but we will need HR to help guide that level of interaction, to help people rise to the occasion, and to create jobs that we haven’t heard about or thought about.”
As part of the celebrations honoring EY as Mays Business School’s 2018 Corporate Partner of the Year, business honors students met with a roundtable of professionals in various roles and offices around the country.
The professionals in the conversation included:
Randy Cain ’82, Vice Chair, Region Managing Partner
Ellen Glazerman, Executive Director, EY Foundation
Students quickly discovered, however, that this was to be a very interactive discussion, with the professionals from EY turning the tables – seeking advice and opinions from the students on their knowledge of changing technology and what they see and hear in the business world today. The team members remarked that they hold the opinions and mindsets of the young in high regard.
Cain put it best when he stated, “young people are driving the experiences the corporate world is talking about. It doesn’t matter the service line, they are all being disrupted.” This disruption comes from changing technology and a future that is going to be “fascinating” to watch, Cain continued. The team believes wholeheartedly that Texas A&M University and Mays Business School is making the right investments in learning experiences to prepare their students for that future.
Baumann commented that “change is often and forward,” and wanted to know what things the students were going to focus on and stretch themselves to do in preparation for that change. She added that “culture is the reason behind the longevity” at EY, and that a good company culture is key in adapting to change.
Schumacher affirmed the rest of her team members’ sentiments when she stated “it almost doesn’t matter which technologies you learn,” adding that students need to “get more comfortable with technology in general, because technology is a big enabler” in today’s society.
The team ended the roundtable discussion by providing the students with a vote of confidence and showcasing exactly why the partnership with Mays Business School is such a big deal for EY. They love to hire Aggies. “All of the skills and responsibilities you learn in organizations during your time in college are beyond valuable,” Glazerman said. The team agreed that the organizational experience at A&M is something that sets Aggie students apart from other universities.