Fisher College of Business
Warren Buffett caricature
Fisher MBA students traveled to Nebraska in February to meet Warren Buffett and tour Berkshire Hathaway businesses. To extend their gratitude to Buffett for the invitation, students presented him with an original caricature created by Columbus area artist Kory Hubbell.
Stulz receives 2008 Risk Manager of the Year Award from professional organization

Rene StulzThe Global Association of Risk Professionals awarded the Association's 2008 Risk Manager of the Year Award to René M. Stulz (pictured right), the Everett D. Reese Chair of Banking and Monetary Economics at Fisher.

Stulz was honored during the Association's 10th Annual Risk Management Convention & Exhibition on February 10, 2009 at the New York Marriott Marquis in New York City.

Richard Apostolik, Global Association of Risk Professionals President and CEO, said, "The Risk Manager of the Year Award was established in 1997 by the association to recognize the outstanding contributions and positive impact made by individuals, or organizations, to the financial risk management profession.

"We are delighted to name Dr. Stulz as our Risk Manager of the Year in recognition of his many years of contributions to risk management through his extensive work in academia, as well as a lecturer, author, consultant, and an association trustee. We are grateful for his dedication and commitment to furthering the role of risk management; particularly at this time of dramatic evolution within the industry." Read More>>

MBA students receive warm
reception from Warren Buffett

Warren Buffett with Vandana Agrawal

Vandana Agrawal receives
a hug from Warren Buffett

Despite the dismal economic climate, business leader and philanthropist Warren Buffett was upbeat and expressed his optimism to a group of Fisher students and MBA candidates from five other business schools who met with him at his company headquarters in Omaha, Neb. on Feb. 20.

For the second year in a row, Buffett, chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway Inc., hosted students from Fisher's MBA program for a tour, lunch and a question and answer session. The 27 Fisher students joined MBA students from Duke, Tennessee State, Northern Arizona, Brigham Young and New York universities for the meeting.

To express their appreciation to Buffett for hosting the meeting, Fisher students presented him with his caricature posing in the O-H-I-O cheer with students in Ohio Stadium. The caricature was created by local artist Kory Hubbell.

Three students who had an opportunity to spend time with Buffett up close and personal during the trip shared what they will remember most about their meeting with Fisher News Quarterly.

Vandana Agrawal rode with Buffett from the company's boardroom to the restaurant: "I grabbed shotgun, yes! When I met him, I thanked him for this opportunity, as we all did. He talked to us about his kids and then went on to ask each of us about our backgrounds and what we want to do long-term." Read More>>

Record number of business leaders volunteer to mentor MBA students

Mentor receptionNearly 100 mentors met with MBA students at a Blackwell Inn reception.

Four CEOs; two CFOs; 11 company presidents; two executive VPs; seven senior VPs; 11 VPs; 5 partners and three business owners," Stephen Mangum, interim dean, rattled off during the cold winter evening. "And I want to add a partridge in a pear tree after that list."

However, it wasn't Dean Mangum's holiday wish list. He was tallying the profile of local business executives who volunteered their time to mentor Fisher MBAs. The executives and students met at a reception in the Blackwell ballroom on Wednesday, Jan. 21.

According to Karen Wruck, associate dean of the MBA program, the 2009 Corporate Mentor Program is having a record breaking year. Open to all MBA students, the mentor program attracted more than 100 business leaders as volunteers. Some students were meeting their mentors for the first time at the Blackwell; others had already engaged in electronic exchanges over e-mail.

John Gresham, a first-year student, was looking forward to meeting his mentor whom he already communicated with through e-mail. Read More>>

More than 300 people attend summit on entrepreneurship, poverty at Fisher

Ohio Lieutenant Governor Lee Fisher and Sharon Alvarez
Sharon Alvarez, associate professor of management, presents Ohio Lieutenant Governor Lee Fisher with a Block O scarf, made by Bolivian villagers, to thank him for his keynote speech at the Feb. 20 entrepreneurship and poverty summit.

"The whole metaphor of social safety net is wrong," said Ohio Lieutenant Governor Lee Fisher, who gave the concluding keynote address at the "Alleviating Poverty through Entrepreneurship Summit" on Feb. 20.

"We should be providing people economic elevators, giving them the power within themselves and the tools they need to move up the economic ladder," he said.

Fisher's address culminated a day-long summit that brought together officials from the World Bank, the governments of Peru, Cote d'Ivoire, the Ohio governor's Office of Appalachia, corporate business leaders, entrepreneurship scholars and social entrepreneurs who all discussed best entrepreneurship strategies for addressing poverty from research theory to practice.

More than 300 students, staff and faculty from Fisher and across the university along with members of the general public gathered in 375 Gerlach Hall and overflowed into 365 Gerlach next door to watch on closed circuit television.

"This summit on poverty and entrepreneurship has been the most tremendous experience of my life," said Samuel tete Mathey-apossan, an MBA student and one of the organizers of the event. "I was surprised at the response of participants - we had more than 400 registered - and the enthusiasm of the guests as well as the speakers."

Previous work experience not always a positive in a new job, study says

Steffanie Wilk
Steffanie Wilk

Employees with previous work experience bring valuable knowledge and skills to their new jobs - but some of what they learned may actually hurt their work performance.

A study of telephone call center employees is one of the first to suggest that previous work experience isn't all positive for new employees. Workers may keep some old habits and ways of doing things that hurt performance in their new roles.

"Organizations pay a premium for workers with job experience that will allow them to just step in and start contributing immediately," said Steffanie Wilk, co-author of the study and associate professor of management and human resources.

"But what employers don't realize is that some of what their employees learned in previous jobs will end up being a negative." Read More>>

MBA, undergraduate students join
forces to strengthen Net Impact

For the students behind Fisher's chapter of Net Impact, sustainability is not just the latest business buzz word or mantra. Sustainability is also one of the chapter's objectives that is making the fledgling organization thrive as one of the college's fastest growing student groups.

One unique aspect of Net Impact is that it is among the few Fisher student organizations that count both graduates and undergraduates among its membership. In its first full year as a student organization, the chapter has attracted about 75 members. The chapter already has several corporate sponsors including NetJets, Greif and Dow Chemical.

Founded in 1993 in San Francisco, "Net Impact is an international nonprofit organization whose mission is to make a positive impact on society by growing and strengthening a community of leaders who use business to improve the world," according to the organization's mission statement.

Fisher's MBA chapter of Net Impact was established last year through the efforts of Jamie Levine, who graduated in spring of 2008. The activities included participation in the Mayor's Green Team Case Competition and providing a financial donation to Fisher Serves, according to Vandana Rajakumar, the current graduate student president of the chapter.

Simultaneously, James Balch, a sophomore at the time, independently established an undergraduate chapter and began reaching out to his peers including Sonya Jindal, an Honors Contract student.

"I have been interested in environmental sustainability for quite some time," said Jindal, who joined forces with Balch. "When I began talking to James and hearing about what he plans to do, it made me believe in it as well. He showed me the national web site and got me interested in Net Impact. We wanted to make it something big and that big picture and drive are what got me interested." Read More>>

Fisher Black MBA Association speaker series puts focus on leadership, challenges

Boyce Watkins chats with Mac Stewart
Boyce Watkins (left), keynote of Fisher's Black History Month Speaker Series, chats with Mac Stewart, Ohio State's vice provost and chief diversity officer.

It takes a lot of work to achieve success in a world where institutional barriers have historically derailed the progression of African-Americans. Yet, it can be done.

That was the message that was echoed by speakers throughout the Black History Month Speaker Series organized and hosted by Fisher's Black MBA Association. The month-long series featured four African-American leaders from diverse fields, including the corporate world, social and community service, athletics and management education and scholarship.

The first speaker in the series, Ohio State's Gene Smith, director of athletics, told of his background that led to his present day achievements.

"I come from a blue collar environment where at the end of the day you roll up your sleeves, get the job done with no excuses," he told students and others gathered at Gerlach Hall on Feb. 4. An excerpt of his speech is featured in a video on Ohio State's Web site. Read More>>

Fisher undergraduates take first place in national case competition

A team of Fisher undergraduate students competing against 12 colleges and universities from across the country won a student case competition sponsored by the Colorado Transportation Community and the Denver Transportation Club.

Ashley Verhoff, Sierra Clouse and Tada Yamamoto (pictured l-r above) represented Fisher at the "Operation Stimulus" competition, which was a part of the 28th Annual Transportation Forum on Jan. 22-24 in Denver.

The team, advised by Keely Croxton, associate professor in marketing and logistics, credited their classroom experiences for their victory.

"The case studies we've done in class and thought we would probably not see again gave us insight into how we could approach a solution to the case," Yamamoto said. "What put us over the top, as the students from other universities mentioned, was our presentation skills. Our experiences inside and outside the classroom at Fisher prepared us well to present our solution and handle the judges' questions while keeping our composure."

The student case competition revolved around the distribution of a high-tech phone in Europe. The Fisher team also participated in other conference activities.

The three-day event provides a forum for speakers from leading industries, educators and government officials to make presentations and interact with high school and college students and people representing all elements of the transportation industry. This year's conference theme, "Global Crossroads: The Future of Transportation," focused on competing and prospering in a global economy.

Spring 2009

In This Issue

Stulz receives 2008 Risk Manager of the Year Award from professional organization

MBA students receive warm reception from Warren Buffett

Record number of business leaders volunteer to mentor MBA students

More than 300 people attend summit on entrepreneurship, poverty at Fisher

Previous work experience not always a positive in a new job, study says

MBA, undergraduate students join forces to strengthen Net Impact

Fisher Black MBA Association speaker series puts focus on leadership, challenges

Fisher undergraduates take first place in national case competition

News Briefs

Fisher In The News

Jay Anand-Knowledge @Wharton/H.R. Executive

Oded Shenkar - Smart Money

Shashi Matta - Cleveland Plain Dealer

Richard Dietrich - Bloomberg

Waleed Muhanna - NPR

Events Calendar

Our Alumni are Everywhere

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Max M. Fisher
College of Business

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