I can't believe it has been more than a year since I was named dean of the Carlson School. And what a year it has been!
Earlier today, I had the honor of addressing alumni and friends of the Carlson School at the 1st Tuesday Speaker Series at McNamara Alumni Center. Here are my prepared remarks.
As this busy and exciting year draws to a close, I wanted to provide a quick update on some recent items of note and preview some things to look forward to in 2013.
Dean Stefanie Lenway of the Broad College of Business and I were together at TCF Bank Stadium on November 24 (more details in my last blog post). During the football game that afternoon, we decided to make a small wager.
Our school is not just great at developing leaders for the corporate world, we also do a great job developing leaders for higher education.
This past weekend, I had the distinct honor and pleasure of traveling to Warsaw and attending a variety of graduation ceremonies for the Warsaw Executive MBA Program.
The events marked the culmination of a highly successful and extraordinary partnership with the Warsaw School of Economics that spanned 17 fantastic years and 16 graduating classes. It is difficult to describe the energy, enthusiasm, and sense of accomplishment that permeated this special occasion.
Our three MBA programs truly are exceptional. Bloomberg Businessweek ranked our Full-Time Program as No. 1 in job placement last year and the Part-Time Program is 9th in the country according U.S. News & World Report.
However, rankings alone don't tell the whole story. At the Carlson School, we focus on really transforming lives through hands-on, high touch business education.
We don't make widgets at the Carlson School. We're in the business of transforming lives through business education. I try not to lose sight of our mission when dealing with the day-to-day activities and now I have a constant reminder of it in my office.
Ethics and corporate responsibility are woven throughout our undergraduate curriculum. However, in today's business environment we must constantly ask ourselves, can we be doing even more to shape the next generation of principled business leaders. We think we can.
If you haven't already, I encourage you to read President Kaler's recent article in the Star Tribune on the 150th anniversary of the Morrill Act.
It's hard for me to believe that a little more than 100 days ago I became dean of the Carlson School of Management. So much has taken place in that period of time and I wanted to provide you with a bit of an update on what's happened and share a glimpse of what's to come.
In celebration, we gathered yesterday to award you with a degree that recognizes your tireless efforts, acknowledges your scholarly achievements, and symbolizes the life-changing effect that higher education holds. Regardless of whether you pursue a career in business or continue on with your studies, your Carlson School of Management degree has you poised to shape your future, and that of business.
Recently we hosted our annual Women's Leadership Conference, which was highlighted by a delightful "Inside the Boardroom" conversation with Buffalo Wild Wings CEO Sally Smith.
Our students are amazing!
They have the skills and abilities to accomplish anything that they set their minds to. And more importantly, they have learned the importance of giving back so early in their careers.
Travel is a significant part of a dean's duties and I very much enjoy the chance to bring the Carlson School to the world as I meet with our alumni. Their passion for the school is so invigorating, and I find I learn as much about what makes this place special when I'm away as I do when I'm on campus.
Simply changing our frame of reference can lead to such wonderful insights. On one recent trip, I found myself fascinated by the operational efficiencies of the hospitality industry and the intricacies of cross-cultural teams, and wondering whether we could incorporate any of their insights here.
Your answers to these questions will help me articulate our shared pathway for the future.
Last week I had the good fortune of speaking at two events that epitomize the transformational nature of the Carlson MBA experience.
Last week I was invited to participate in a wide-ranging discussion of economic and business issues on Almanac's business panel on Twin Cities Public Television with Chris Farrell and Professor Jeanne Boeh of Augsburg. One topic we discussed was the growing pervasiveness of social media and the behavioral trends it is spawning. We rely so much on peer to peer networks and on machine intelligence to guide us on what and where and how we consume - and even who we share our lives with.
Happy New Year! The next time you visit our school, you may notice something different in the atrium.
I'm writing today from Chicago where I am meeting with alumni, some recent, others from as far back as 1939. Here and wherever I go these days the first topic of conversation is our wonderful holiday card video, which today surpassed one million views on YouTube!
As we head off to enjoy the upcoming holiday with family and friends, I wanted to sincerely thank everyone who has helped me in my new role as interim dean of the Carlson School of Management.
Having lived in Minnesota for 20 years I understand that our culture is not one in which we like to brag about ourselves. However, I simply cannot contain my excitement over seeing the Carlson School listed by Bloomberg Businessweek as the top school in the country for 2011 MBA job placement. I only wish this national recognition for something that we have always done well - preparing our students for the workplace - would have delved into why we are so successful.
What should we be doing more of today so that there will be less catching up to do at Homecoming each year?
When I first arrived at the Carlson School more than 20 years ago, there were but a handful of faculty in the Strategic Management and Organization department studying international business. So I was filled with tremendous pride this afternoon as we celebrated how far we have come with global management education, research, and outreach and all that our school has done to help students, faculty, and the community become more global as we launched the Carlson Global Institute.
The tradition of presidential inaugurations at American colleges and universities is nearly as old as the country itself. I am glad these ceremonies have survived through the centuries as it offers us a chance to look back on how far we have come and imagine where we want to go as a University as we rally behind a new leader.