Watson Graduate School
STILLWATER, Okla. – MITO Material Solutions, a company grown by a student from an Oklahoma State University classroom project, has been awarded a National Science Foundation Research grant for $224,988 to conduct research and development on a nano-additive that increases the durability of composite materials utilized in aerospace, recreation and automotive industries.
Haley Keith and her husband Kevin, graduates from OSU, founded MITO and serve as president and vice president. Richard Gajan, a Thoma Family assistant professor entrepreneurship in the OSU Spears School of Business, serves as CEO of MITO.
The additive was developed in OSU’s Helmerich Research Center in Tulsa by Dr. Ranji Vaidyanathan. Haley adopted a business plan for MITO as part of a classroom project in the Creativity, Innovation and Entrepreneurship Scholars Program. The project grew into a full-fledged business that continues to gain traction, with this grant helping in the creation of two engineering positions at inception, while 200 employees are anticipated within five to seven years.
“MITO has never really stopped moving, but the SBIR award allowed us to finally put a lot more fuel in the tank,” Haley said. “Our momentum in 2018 is continuously growing as this grant provides the funds for us to pursue the commercial development of our product with two full-time employees, while securing our Series A funding round.”
Oklahoma State University assistant professor of management Aaron Hill is going beyond the classroom to improve the life of not only his students but others around the world. Hill shared his method in enhancing lives with OSU MBA students during their final Professional Development class of the semester.
Along with Jack Skeen and Greg Miller, Hill authored a self-improvement book called “The Circle Blueprint.” Skeen is a psychologist who is now an executive coach, and Miller received his PhD from OSU studying factors driving turnover and is now the CEO of CrossCom, a technology services company. After taking the self-assessment online at www.thecircleblueprint.com, readers can dive into the book to learn more about a balance in life and how to improve in areas where he or she needs work.
To prove developing this book is solely a social endeavor to help others, all proceed from the book are donated to charity. One of the projects includes creating a scholarship at OSU.
A group of Oklahoma State University Master’s in Business Analytics students were participants in November at the four-day 2017 Southeast SAS® Users Group (SCSUG) Conference in Cary, N.C.
The conference allowed OSU Spears School of Business analytics students to meet with SAS® users from Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico with the purpose of learning and sharing about the software, network with SAS staff and other users, and provide a platform for everyone to expand their knowledge of SAS.
“This is the third year in a row that our students have participated and won scholarships at the SESUG Conference. I am very happy with their performances at this conference,” said Goutam Chakraborty, SAS professor of marketing analytics and director of the Master’s in Business Analytics program at Spears Business.
Longtime Oklahoma State University professor Dursun Delen was recently appointed as one of the two editors-in-chief of the Journal of Business Analytics, a new addition to the rich collection of journals sponsored by the Operational Research Society and published by Taylor & Francis Publishing company.
After a year-long application, selection and evaluation process, Delen was selected for one of the two Editor-in-Chief positions, and will begin his five-year term on Jan. 1, 2018.
“Business analytics is the art and science of converting a wide variety of data assets to actionable insights for accurate and timely decision making. In essence, it is the process of discovering new and useful knowledge from Big Data (or small data) for the betterment of all organizational practices,” said Delen, Regent Professor, William S. Spears Chair in Business Administration, Patterson Foundation Chair and management science and information systems (MSIS) professor in OSU’s Spears School of Business.
Homecoming was still one week away but Oklahoma State University economics alumnus James Bishop (Ph.D., 2016) made an early pilgrimage back to his alma mater at Spears School of Business in early October.
Born and raised on the big island of Hawaii, Bishop made his decision to come to OSU as an undergraduate student like he appears to make every decision, methodically and well-researched.
“I knew I was a National Merit Scholar, and when the scholarship offers started coming in, the very best offer was from OSU. So, that made my decision for me,” he said. “I looked it up and the best LSAT scores came from economics and math majors, so I majored in economics.”
Oklahoma State University’s Master’s in Business Analytics program was well represented last week as a group of students and faculty were participants in the 2017 South Central SAS® Users Group (SCSUG) Educational Forum in Addison, Texas.
The three-day conference allows OSU Spears School of Business analytics students to come together with SAS® users in Oklahoma, Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas and New Mexico with the purpose of learning and sharing about the software, network with SAS staff and other users, and provide a platform for everyone to expand their knowledge of SAS.
“This is the sixth year in a row that our students have participated in and won scholarships to the SCSUG Conference,” said Miriam McGaugh, clinical professor for business analytics in Spears Business. “In addition to the nine scholarship winners from OSU, we had three additional students participate in the student symposium for the fifth year.”
Entrepreneurs are seen to be synonymous with success and innovation, but that innovation can disrupt the market and increase inequality. On the other hand, an entrepreneur who enters the market can increase equality by offering competition, as well. So, why isn’t this topic as simple as we think it is?
Oklahoma State University assistant professor of entrepreneurship Per Bylund researches all things entrepreneur. By researching the topic of inequality and how it relates to entrepreneurial activity, Bylund felt the term “inequality” needed to be defined more clearly. He partnered with Mark Packard, assistant professor at the University of Nevada at Reno, to do just that.
“Inequality is a very provocative and hot topic right now, and what we argue in this paper is that it’s misunderstood and made a little too simple in the debate,” Bylund said. “We think there might be more to it, and a deeper analysis might help us understand the concept and all the nuances to the concept. What we look at is how entrepreneurs, in different ways, contribute to inequality or equality.”
A group of Oklahoma State University Master’s in Business Analytics students were among those participating in the 2017 MidWest SAS® Users Group (MWSUG) Conference earlier this month in downtown St. Louis.
The OSU Spears School of Business graduate students participated in the two-day conference which included paper presentations from other SAS® users, hands-on workshops, live demonstrations, and opportunities to network with other SAS® users. In addition, they were able to visit with staff from SAS® that was able to provide their unique expertise and insight.
Under special circumstances, George Abraham traveled to Stillwater, Oklahoma from India on his own to speak with graduate students in the Professional Development class on September 29. Abraham encouraged students to follow their dreams despite other’s negativity. He also shared his experiences and challenges living visually impaired.
Growing up, people did not have faith in a future for children who were visually impaired. It was common for people to express their doubts about his future to him and his parents. Fortunately for Abraham, his parents saw much more in him than just a blind child, and they did everything they could to give him the opportunities to succeed in regular school.
One of these opportunities included participating in athletics. He enjoyed running, but he did not start out as a fast runner and continued to come in last place. As he continued to practice, he gradually improved his skills. Eventually, he became the fastest runner in the school. Continue Reading
Before the Fall 2017 semester began, Oklahoma State University MBA students enrolled in the Corporate Strategy class had the opportunity to travel to China for 10 days. While abroad, students experienced culture, sightseeing and collaboration with Chinese students from Sun Yat-sen University in Guangzhou, followed by a final stop in Hong Kong.
The trip began in Beijing with tours and visitations to local businesses. The culture and cuisine largely differs from that in the United States. This highly populated city constantly bustles from activities of the everyday citizen. The delicious cuisine is served family-style around a large circular table with a Lazy Susan in the middle. This setup allows for the sharing of not only food but also conversation among those at the table.
Students traveled around this part of China, including a partial trek along the Great Wall of China and visit to Tiananmen Square. Continue Reading
While students typically learn from leaders with numerous years of career experience, those attending the September 15 professional development course were given a chance to listen to early career advice from recent MBA alumnus, Austin Murch. Murch, a project controller with Sandia National Laboratories, was once the MBA Association president and received his MBA degree from OSU in 2015.
Murch began his talk by explaining how he learned from and embraced each obstacle he faced when going into the workforce.
“I took something from every stop, every challenge, and shaped my career path,” Murch said.
This led the discussion into the topic of failure and success. Murch suggests one way to overcome the feeling of failure is to change your outlook on situations because you may not be failing at all.
Eleven Master’s in Business Analytics students from Oklahoma State University attended the annual SAS Analytics Conference to compete against students from across the nation Sept. 18-20 in Washington, D.C.
The annual conference brings together analytics professionals and students to collaborate and learn more about data analytics. Prominent keynote speakers such as Earvin “Magic” Johnson, chairman and CEO of Magic Johnson Enterprises, presented on a wide variety of topics related to the data analytics industry, and more than 150 sessions and demos were offered to attendees.
“We are delighted to participate for the 11th consecutive year at the SAS Analytics Conference,” said Goutam Chakraborty, SAS professor of marketing analytics and director of the Master’s in Business Analytics program at the Spears School of Business. “Our MS in Business Analytics (MSBAN) students presented 11 posters. This is by far the largest number of posters presented by students from any other university.
“Our MSBAN students also won four out of six best poster awards given by SAS. That is an outstanding achievement of our students. Our students have won best poster awards consecutively for the last seven years. This sustained exemplary performance at the national level over the years is a testament to the quality and the hard work of our students and faculty in addition to the strength of our curriculum.” Continue Reading
Incoming Oklahoma State University MBA students received their first taste of the graduate program during a three-day orientation. During this time, they experienced an introduction to courses, got to know fellow MBA students, and collected information about programs and involvement.
The first day of orientation began with presentations of academic guidelines and professionalism, along with general information about the MBA program.
“Orientation for the MBA program was an awesome experience,” Colin Kuzdak, first-semester MBA student, said. “It wasn’t just lectures about the program and meeting our professors but it was more about us students getting to know each other and understanding the tools we have to be successful as MBA students.”
After lunch, students learned about career readiness from Abbey Davis with Charles Machine Works and Garrett Purdum with Chesapeake Energy Corp. To conclude the day, a presentation about the MBA case completion was explained. The case competition is required for full-time MBA students, and gives them the opportunity to work as a team to develop a plan to solve a given business problem and present it to executives. Continue Reading
Oklahoma State University’s innovative doctoral program for executives continues to grow as the sixth cohort of the Ph.D. in Business for Executives features 15 participants from across the United States.
The three-year doctoral program in OSU’s Spears School of Business kicked off in August with an orientation session at the Student Union on the Stillwater campus. The sixth cohort joins 78 participants from across the world who have already taken part in the Ph.D. in Business for Executives program.
“We are very excited to welcome our sixth cohort to the executive doctoral program,” said Ken Eastman, dean of the Spears School of Business. “The program is making a significant impact and continues to attract the quality and diversity of individuals we expected including representatives from such companies as American Airlines, Bank of America, Citigroup, Deloitte, Dell, Pfizer, Sprint, Walmart, and Wells Fargo. The program has a very good reputation and it shows in the quality of individuals who are admitted.”
Oklahoma State University’s School of Entrepreneurship has been selected as the top program in the nation to offer an affordable online Master’s in Entrepreneurship (MSE).
The online MSE program continues to consistently receive national attention. Earlier in 2017, SuccessfulStudent.org’s ranking of the of the 15 Best Online Entrepreneurship Colleges in the United States placed OSU as No. 1 on the list. The School of Entrepreneurship had also been ranked the No. 1 Best Online College for Entrepreneurship by OnlineColleges.com andNo. 2 for the Most Affordable Top Ranked Online MBA Entrepreneurship Program by both EDsmart.org and BestMastersDegrees.com. The program also grabbed the attention of the Princeton Review as the No. 23 program in the Top 25 Graduate Schools of Entrepreneurship Studies rankings in 2016.
“Our online Master’s in Entrepreneurship program is something that we’re very proud of,” said Bruce Barringer, head of the School of Entrepreneurship at OSU. “We focus equally on instilling in our students the entrepreneurial mindset and teaching the business startup process. We concisely get positive feedback from our students that the program has made a big differences in their careers and their lives.” Continue Reading
Corporate bond market investors bear the risk that the borrower will not pay them as promised; that’s why corporate bond prices tend to be lower than treasury bonds. But why isn’t corporate bond investor behavior consistent with the old adage that “no news is good news?” when the Federal Open Market Committee announces a plan to stay the course?
Oklahoma State University professor of finance Tim Krehbiel and associate professor of finance Ali Nejadmalayeri, along with co-author Siamak Javadi from the University of Texas – Rio Grande Valley, look into corporate bond investor behavior in their latest research, “Do FOMC Actions Speak Loudly? Evidence from Corporate Bond Credit Spreads.”
“If the Federal Reserve announces the intention to ‘stay the course,’ spreads between corporate and treasury bond prices widen,” Krehbiel said. “If the Federal Reserve announces the intention to either raise or lower rates, the spread between bond market prices narrows, and this is somewhat puzzling behavior. We find that staying the course seems to be unsettling for the corporate bond market.”
Corporate bond investors run a high risk of not being repaid by borrowers, so the nature of monetary policy changes is crucial to corporate bond investors.
This research is to be published in the Review of Finance. To view the article online, visit the SSRN copy.
When the going gets tough and the world is against you, research says the best thing to do is get all of the negative out at once.
Oklahoma State University assistant professor of management Owen Parker’s latest research focuses on how firms respond to threats to their reputation. When an organization faces scrutiny from the media, it tends to perform more of the unavoidable negative activities to lessen the blow to its reputation.
“Until now, what we thought is that companies don’t really care that much about what the media thinks or what people are looking at,” Parker says. “But with this paper, we’ve looked at the oil and gas industry and we found that drilling, which is sort of a hazardous activity in the industry, happens when the company is already facing negative scrutiny in the media.”
Parker found that smaller and underperforming companies tend to have to go through compounding the negative attention more frequently than larger companies, since managerial behavior tends to be less organized than a larger, more insulated firm. The major key to Parker’s research is that reputation matters: it’s not just an outcome, but what drives decision-making and perception. Continue Reading
Have you ever wondered when you should invest or make a trade in your stock?
By using United States equity market-level data from 1926 through 2015, Oklahoma State University assistant professor of finance Greg Eaton nailed down the predictive power of trading costs in his latest research, “Micro(structure) before Macro? The Predictive Power of Aggregate Illiquidity for Stock Returns and Economic Activity,” which was accepted into the prestigious Journal of Financial Economics. Eaton cut out the volatility component from trading cost measures and found that embedded volatility was causing misleading results.
“One important aspect of our study is how we measure trading cost,” Eaton said. “We document that most measures of trading cost mechanically embed a volatility component, and it’s important to extract that component so we make sure that our results are driven by actual trading costs as opposed to volatility in disguise. Making this adjustment does have an important impact on our results. What we find is that the trading costs before we made the adjustment did not forecast stock returns, but once we extracted the embedded volatility component, we found strong evidence that trading costs do forecast future stock returns.” Continue Reading
Oklahoma State University Master of Science in Business Analytics students recently got a taste of their future career path at the annual Big Data Boot Camp hosted by the Spears School of Business.
The weeklong boot camp is required for MSBA students completing their first year in the program. The camp not only covers the basics technical skills students will need to have for their future careers but also covers some soft skills that companies look for when making hiring decisions. The boot camp is provided free by Spears Business in partnership with SAS.
“No business can survive without making data-driven decisions,” said Miriam McGaugh, Spears Business clinical assistant professor of marketing and instructor for the Big Data Boot Camp. “Analytics isn’t going away. We train students to utilize software and technology to make processes more efficient in business.” Continue Reading
Spears School of Business marketing professor Kinda Wilson was recently awarded the 2017 Excellence in Teaching/Training Award at the United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA) National Conference in Indianapolis.
Wilson was nominated for the award by the Spears School Online Learning office staff. They worked with her over the past year on the development of her online undergraduate and graduate level Innovative Marketing Social Media Strategies courses. The online learning staff provided video production, instructional design and animation support for the course and nomination.
Wilson has taught for the School of Marketing and International Business for more than 10 years at the OSU-Tulsa campus. “She has proven to be one of the very best teachers I have ever had; and, having been a department head for over 20 years, I have seen many, many teachers,” said Josh Wiener, head of the School of Marketing and International Business.
The Watson Graduate of Management hosted its annual awards banquet on April 7. MBA student Duygu Phillips was recognized as the Outstanding Masters Student for the MBA program, the Outstanding SAS Student Certificate and received OSU Marketing Analytics recognition. MBA student Imran Selim was recognized with an Outstanding SAS Student Certificate and OSU Marketing Analytics.
Phillips is an Exxon Mobil Scholar with a concentration in marketing analytics and entrepreneurship, so she is taking classes such as CIE Scholars. She has been the editorial assistant to Marketing Journal (JMPTP), which has helped her become involved in academia and learn through articles and research. Phillips learned about the publishing process for an academic paper, which is great preparation to pursue a PhD.
Also, she is the MBA Association Vice President of International Affairs, and started the Brown Bag Lunch Series, where business professionals and students meet over lunch, network, exchange ideas and get advice. She has been developing her own business and was accepted into the incubator in accelerateOSU, the student startup center. Continue Reading
Ajay Gupta, consultant at McKinsey & Company, shared his insight on the various sides of business and consulting with Oklahoma State University MBA students this April.
Gupta began with one of his favorite aspects of consulting. He shared what keeps him at his job and why he enjoys it. Gupta enjoys his job because he has a variety of work and clients, which provides him with quite a bit of exposure to various industries. Emphasizing these aspects helps him develop his personal value.
“Every engagement with the client offers an exciting challenge,” Gupta said. “Customers have a choice, so I make sure I provide plenty of value to each of them.”
Gupta explained the type of people who enjoy working for McKinsey & Company. He says it is a good system if you like to do work and be rewarded for it.
His message shifted to matching career paths with interests. Consultants pursue career paths that match their interests. The generalists work across industries and functions to get a range of experiences and skills. The practice consultants focus on a certain industry or function. An implementation coach helps organizations develop the capabilities they need to continuously deliver sustained improvement. Continue Reading
MITO Material Solutions is a student startup team created by Oklahoma State University MBA student Haley Kurtz and mechanical engineering technology student Kevin Keith.
Kurtz, chief executive officer, and Keith, chief operating officer, are under the guidance of assistant professor of entrepreneurship Richard Gajan and professor Ranji Vaidyanathan of the OSU College of Engineering, Architecture and Technology. Kurtz and Keith are also a part of the accelerateOSU program.
Kurtz says the opportunity to work with this startup is because of resources provided through the MBA program and working for accelerate OSU. While she is only a part-time MBA student, she dedicates her time to school, MITO Material Solutions, and traveling to competitions. She also works full-time for accelerateOSU, the OSU School of Entrepreneurship’s newest division that aids student startups.
Kurtz was interested in the Creativity, Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CIE) class, which provides its students with a project. This is a one semester class offered in the fall with the goal for its students to understand and commercialize technology. To enroll in the class, students must complete the interview process where only 30 students are selected for the class, and only 10 of the 30 students are MBA students. This class presented Kurtz the opportunity to work with MITO. Continue Reading
Oklahoma State University students learn quite a bit about themselves and their classmates during their course studies and how to interact with others. Ann Dyer spoke with OSU MBA students about leadership and working with various personality types inside and outside of business.
Dyer begins her discussion with critical success factors to leading successful change programs. She emphasizes the importance of doing research on the company or organization you seek to work with to drive change. This principle applies to an external consultant as well as a new employee. Dyer also discussed the need to build a case for change by comparing market positions, including threats, and create a vision for what success could look like. The case for change should include a financial business case, approach to achieving the outcomes, aligned budgets, and finally, an understanding of what the risk of doing nothing would be.
The topic then switched to the students and how they should present themselves. This is the importance of a personal leadership brand, including how you speak, what people say about you and what impact you make; that is your legacy. While developing a personal brand, it is important to learn from mistakes, trial and error, and never take things too personally. Dyer discussed the concept of recognizing key observable behaviors, assertiveness and responsiveness. These behaviors can help you understand your social style and determine the style of others who you are working with. She stressed that it is important to determine and adapt your style to other’s style if you seek to make an impact. Continue Reading
Three Spears School of Business graduate students were recently honored during the Graduate College’s Graduate Education Week activities on the campus of Oklahoma State University.
Siddharth Suresh, master’s student in telecommunications management, was the first-place winner in the President’s Fellows’ Three Minute Challenge (3MC), and was the recipient of a $2,000 award. Also, Varsha Akkaloori, a master’s in business analytics student, received the People’s Choice Award in the 3MC competition and a $2,000 prize.
The 3MC competition includes the top five Three Minute Presentation (3MP) competitors for non-thesis masters, education specialists and graduate certificate students and the top five Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competitors for thesis master’s and doctoral students. Continue Reading
The seventh annual SAS Analytics Day will be May 5 in the ConocoPhillips OSU Alumni Center at Oklahoma State University. Registration and continental breakfast will begin at 8 a.m., and the conference will conclude at 3:30 p.m.
SAS Analytics Day will bring in national and regional speakers to share their expertise and knowledge with the Oklahoma business and analytics community. The primary goal of this conference is to link OSU’s master’s in business analytics’ students with members of the local and regional business community to help students grow their professional network.
Oklahoma State University student startup team VisionaRx made OSU history by winning the grand prize earlier this month from the Love’s Cup Undergraduate High Growth Division in Oklahoma City.
VisionaRx Retinal Drug Delivery is composed of OSU students Chance Imhoff, management and entrepreneurship; Jaquelyn Lane, chemical engineering with an entrepreneurship minor, and Rachel Davis, chemical engineering pre-med emphasis. The team is coached by David Thomison, clinical assistant professor of entrepreneurship and advisor for student teams at accelerateOSU, OSU’s entrepreneurial incubator program.
The team was awarded a $20,000 cash prize for taking first place in the competition and qualify to continue on to the Tri-State Competition, which hosts teams from Arkansas, Nevada and Oklahoma and will take place May 30-31 in Las Vegas. Lane also won the IBM Pitch Award and was awarded $1,000. This is the first time that an OSU student team has won the undergraduate division of the competition. Continue Reading
Oklahoma State University Spears School of Business master’s in business analytics students and faculty took home several awards earlier this month while attending the annual SAS Global Forum in Orlando, Florida.
Business analytic graduate students Anirban Chakraborty and Indra Kiran Chowdavarapu received the SAS Student Ambassador award, which included an all-expense paid trip to the conference to attend and present their papers. Only 15 awards are given each year to students worldwide, and this is the seventh year in a row that an OSU student has received the award.
An OSU team of students competed in the SAS Student Symposium and was named a Top 8 Finalist, which awarded the entire team an all-expense paid trip to attend the conference and present their research symposium ideas. The team consisted of master’s in business analytics full-time students Jayant Sharma and Sid Grover, who was also awarded the SAS Student Scholarship award, and online learning students John Eacott and Par Aravazhi. This is the second year in a row that an OSU team has competed and finished in the Top 8 and the eighth year in a row that an OSU student was awarded the SAS Student Scholarship.
Oklahoma State University student startup team MITO Material Solutions has once again proved itself by placing second at the prestigious Rice Business Plan Competition, an annual collegiate pitch competition hosted by Rice University.
MITO is composed of MBA student Haley Kurtz, chief executive officer, and mechanical engineering technology student Kevin Keith, chief operating officer, and are coached by assistant professor of Entrepreneurship Richard Gajan in the Spears School of Business and professor Ranji Vaidyanathan of the OSU College of Engineering, Architecture and Technology.
MITO’s product is an adhesive epoxy additive which allow manufacturers to double the durability or significantly decreases the weight of composite materials utilized in the aerospace, recreation and automotive industries. It is based on technology developed at the Helmerich Research Center in Tulsa.
MITO received $50,000 in investment prizing for placing second, provided by the Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship and sponsored by Finger Interest and the Anderson Family Fund at the Greater Houston Community Foundation. Keith placed fifth in the Mercury Fund Elevator Pitch Competition and received $500 in cash. Kurtz received a total of $40,000 in investment prizing for winning the Courageous Women Entrepreneur award, provided by nCourage Entrepreneurs Investment Group. Continue Reading
Harlan Beverly, a graduate of the Oklahoma State Ph.D. in Business for Executives Program – Cohort II, was recently named best entrepreneurship professor at the University of Texas at Austin during Entrepreneurship Week by Longhorn Entrepreneurship Agency. Harlan teaches Lean Startup Essentials at UT and is Assistant Director of the Texas Venture Labs at UT. He shares how OSU helped him pursue his passions for his higher education, entrepreneurship and helping students achieve their goals.
Why did you choose to participate in OSU’s Ph.D. In Business for Executives program?
The OSU Ph.D. in Business for Executives program offered me a chance to continue my goals of lifelong learning and personal achievement. As a lover of video games, I am always looking for ways to push myself and level up. The OSU executive Ph.D. program was the best choice for me because it offered a real Ph.D. experience, including research requirements and a full dissertation while allowing me to continue to run my own business.
What specific OSU experiences or memories do you value most from your time at OSU?
I fondly remember sitting in the big auditorium inside Boone Pickens Stadium and looking up at my family sitting up in the stands as I waited to be hooded for my Ph.D. That proud moment, sitting next to my Ph.D. dissertation chairman Dr. Tom Brown, is sealed in my memory forever.
How has your OSU degree helped you get where you are today?
My Ph.D. from OSU has allowed me to give back to the entrepreneurship community of Austin, Texas in a way that was bigger than I ever expected. Now, I get to teach full-time at UT Austin, where I get to teach and nurture more than 200 young student entrepreneurs each semester.
You just published your first book, “Lean Startings.” How was that experience and what is it about?
One of the best things about being a professor at a university is having summers off. I wrote the book last summer because I always wanted to write a book, and because I felt I had an important story to tell. The book is a fiction business novel, written in a style similar to E. Goldratt’s famous book, “The Goal.” My book “Lean Startings” is the story of a young man and a young woman, both of whom have a startup idea, but no clue as to where to begin. They both end up succeeding in their own way, and while learning entrepreneurship together, also fall in love.
You were just named best entrepreneurship professor at the University of Texas. Can you tell us about that honor and your role in Entrepreneurship Week at UT?
Entrepreneurship week at UT is a celebration of the year’s many entrepreneurship activities, professors, and students. It is the culmination of the entire UT Austin’s entrepreneurship programs. To be named best entrepreneurship professor is actually a huge deal and honor, because it is the only such award given out all year, and is a result of my year-long entrepreneurship teaching efforts.
Tell us about some achievements you are most proud of since graduating from OSU.
I am most proud of my students’ achievements. One of my students, a sophomore at UT Austin, created a business selling survival backpacks in one semester as part of my class and generated over $3,000 during the semester. I have had dozens of students go on to create actual companies after graduating and that is what makes me most proud.
Want to add anything else?
As always, I want to encourage everyone to follow your dreams. Hard work, passion, and focus will yield results. The only way to fail is never to have tried. The only way to lose is to give up.