Students attend Valpo’s college for business majors

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Creative Getaway By Abby Seeber

Creative Getaway By Abby Seeber

Sarah Bortz ‘21 was offered a dream internship with the FBI in the spring of 2020 only to have COVID- 19 shut down the government and her internship. Sarah was devastated. Instead of wasting her summer away, she decided to make good use of her time and start a business. In collaboration with her brother, Sarah started Double B’s Art Camp.  “Sarah always has a vision. She knows exactly what is coming next,” says Associate Professor of Information and Decision Sciences, Coleen Wilder, who is Sarah’s faculty mentor. This mindset served Sarah well in planning a camp that would offer a real-world business experience for her while providing a service to the greater community.  “I was looking to gain the beneficial life experience (of an internship),” Sarah says. Thus, she created her own art camp in the summer of 2019. The program had run with low enrollment and the siblings…

College of Business Maintains Accreditation

College of Business Maintains Accreditation

Valparaiso University’s College of Business has been reaccredited by AACSB International — The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. This five-year accreditation confirms that the College of Business continues to uphold and exemplify the standards of an elite business school. Founded in 1916, AACSB International is the longest serving global accrediting body for business schools that offer undergraduate, master’s, and doctoral degrees in business and accounting. Maintaining this standard of excellence places the University among the 5% of business schools worldwide which have earned AACSB accreditation.

Adventures Abroad and At Home

Adventures Abroad and At Home

Grace Tam ’22 calls Valparaiso, Indiana, home but always sought adventure and learning beyond the Midwest. Thanks to creative opportunities to travel during her college years, Grace discovered what being a citizen of the world means to her. Currently Grace is studying at La Universidad Veritas in Santa Rosa, Heredia, in Costa Rica. She has been immersed in business and engineering concepts to deepen her passion for her newly adopted major and diving into how she can make the world a better place. Grace was drawn to study in Costa Rica because of the country’s national commitment to sustainability and its environmentally conscious citizens. This mindset and investment in the future of the entire country was especially appealing to her. “One of my most interesting courses in Costa Rica is about sustainable development and environmental awareness,” Grace says. “I learned how businesses can take environmentally sustainable and conscious decisions for…

Forging a New Path

Forging a New Path

Madeline Hanley ’20 found herself graduating on a slightly different path than she initially expected — one that combined her interests and talents. As Valparaiso University’s first graduate of the integrated business and engineering major, her journey through the program was untraditional and she is thrilled with the outcome. The Orland Park, Illinois, native discovered that exploring new interests at Valpo could help her hone her skills and passion. Madeline was involved in Pi Beta Phi, College Mentors for Kids, the Society of Women Engineers, and a member of the Dance Marathon Morale Team during her time as a student. “Being involved in student organizations and the Morale Team reminded me that I am a super outgoing person and I love to put myself out there,” Madeline says. “I really cherished all the opportunities I had to be myself and make lifelong friends. Experiences like being on Morale Team helped…

Offering Feedback and Inspiring Change

Offering Feedback and Inspiring Change

Students, faculty, and College of Business leadership work together to further the College’s strategic vision to prepare graduates for a global business environment. The Dean’s Leadership Council (DLC) acts as an integral part of this collaborative effort to inform decision-making processes and discuss challenges that the College faces. The DLC is composed of 12 student ambassadors who represent many disciplines in the College of Business. “I thought joining the DLC would provide a great opportunity to give back to the College that has invested so much in me,” says Maggie Schaller ’21, a marketing major and DLC ambassador. “Our goal is to establish a good line of communication between students and Dean Erhardt.” In the fall semester, the DLC met virtually to discuss various topics that are important to the College’s guiding principles. Their two largest points of focus were making online learning more engaging and advancing diversity and inclusion…

Customizing Shoes for the Community

Customizing Shoes for the Community

In Valparaiso University’s College of Business, students gain skills that prepare them for today’s globalized business environment. But young entrepreneurs, such as Jake Miller ’22, don’t have to wait until graduation to utilize their education. Jake, a business management major, started his own business, JEM Custom Shoes, in 2015. While his journey into entrepreneurship preceded his acceptance to Valpo, his experience in the College of Business has provided the skills and knowledge he needs to succeed in his business endeavors. “The College of Business wants you to succeed and gives you the opportunities you need to grow,” Jake says. “The skills I’m developing in class coincide with what I’m already doing with JEM Custom Shoes. I’ve been able to apply class projects — like designing a website — to my business, which has helped me better understand various marketing and business techniques.” JEM Custom Shoes began as a hobby for…

A Singular Focus

A Singular Focus

“Start early. Stay hungry.” This common refrain for students in Valparaiso University’s College of Business guides them as they pursue meaningful opportunities to establish themselves in the business community. Students like Gavin Twigg ’21 complete essential on-the-job learning to complement the College’s curriculum. Gavin, an accounting and finance double-major, is working as an audit-assurance intern with EY Consulting. “My business classes at Valpo have helped prepare me for my internship,” Gavin says. “While my audit class had the most direct correlation, a lot of the time it helps to go back to the basics. In my lower-level accounting classes, I did so much work to understand the principles, which are helpful to reference in a real job environment.” In his role, Gavin is assigned to audit various metrics for his clients including payroll, inventory, and accounts payable. He tests samples of data to ensure employees are paid correctly, products are…

Collaboration in the Classroom

Collaboration in the Classroom

During her first year as a faculty member at Valparaiso University, Meichen Dong, Ph.D., assistant professor of marketing, has navigated various challenges of teaching during a global pandemic while integrating herself into the College of Business. “The fall was quite hectic as it was my first semester teaching and we all had to learn to adapt to the pandemic,” Professor Dong says. “It was more difficult to build relationships with students and gauge their understanding or feedback due to wearing face coverings. As the semester went on, students became more comfortable and active with their feedback, which made those connections easier to establish.” Professor Dong chose to teach marketing at Valpo because of the uplifting community of students and faculty as well as its location. “My overall impression was that Valpo was a good place to be,” Professor Dong says. “I’m from a cold region in China, so Northwest Indiana…

All News

Creative Getaway By Abby Seeber

Sarah Bortz ‘21 was offered a dream internship with the FBI in the spring of 2020 only to have COVID- 19 shut down the government and her internship. Sarah was devastated. Instead of wasting her summer away, she decided to make good use of her time and start a business. In collaboration with her brother, Sarah started Double B’s Art Camp.  “Sarah always has a vision. She knows exactly what is coming next,” says Associate Professor of Information and Decision Sciences, Coleen Wilder, who is Sarah’s faculty mentor. This mindset served Sarah well in planning a camp that would offer a real-world business experience for her while providing a service to the greater community.  “I was looking to gain the beneficial life experience (of an internship),” Sarah says. Thus, she created her own art camp in the summer of 2019. The program had run with low enrollment and the siblings…

College of Business Maintains Accreditation

Valparaiso University’s College of Business has been reaccredited by AACSB International — The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. This five-year accreditation confirms that the College of Business continues to uphold and exemplify the standards of an elite business school. Founded in 1916, AACSB International is the longest serving global accrediting body for business schools that offer undergraduate, master’s, and doctoral degrees in business and accounting. Maintaining this standard of excellence places the University among the 5% of business schools worldwide which have earned AACSB accreditation.

Adventures Abroad and At Home

Grace Tam ’22 calls Valparaiso, Indiana, home but always sought adventure and learning beyond the Midwest. Thanks to creative opportunities to travel during her college years, Grace discovered what being a citizen of the world means to her. Currently Grace is studying at La Universidad Veritas in Santa Rosa, Heredia, in Costa Rica. She has been immersed in business and engineering concepts to deepen her passion for her newly adopted major and diving into how she can make the world a better place. Grace was drawn to study in Costa Rica because of the country’s national commitment to sustainability and its environmentally conscious citizens. This mindset and investment in the future of the entire country was especially appealing to her. “One of my most interesting courses in Costa Rica is about sustainable development and environmental awareness,” Grace says. “I learned how businesses can take environmentally sustainable and conscious decisions for…

Forging a New Path

Madeline Hanley ’20 found herself graduating on a slightly different path than she initially expected — one that combined her interests and talents. As Valparaiso University’s first graduate of the integrated business and engineering major, her journey through the program was untraditional and she is thrilled with the outcome. The Orland Park, Illinois, native discovered that exploring new interests at Valpo could help her hone her skills and passion. Madeline was involved in Pi Beta Phi, College Mentors for Kids, the Society of Women Engineers, and a member of the Dance Marathon Morale Team during her time as a student. “Being involved in student organizations and the Morale Team reminded me that I am a super outgoing person and I love to put myself out there,” Madeline says. “I really cherished all the opportunities I had to be myself and make lifelong friends. Experiences like being on Morale Team helped…

Offering Feedback and Inspiring Change

Students, faculty, and College of Business leadership work together to further the College’s strategic vision to prepare graduates for a global business environment. The Dean’s Leadership Council (DLC) acts as an integral part of this collaborative effort to inform decision-making processes and discuss challenges that the College faces. The DLC is composed of 12 student ambassadors who represent many disciplines in the College of Business. “I thought joining the DLC would provide a great opportunity to give back to the College that has invested so much in me,” says Maggie Schaller ’21, a marketing major and DLC ambassador. “Our goal is to establish a good line of communication between students and Dean Erhardt.” In the fall semester, the DLC met virtually to discuss various topics that are important to the College’s guiding principles. Their two largest points of focus were making online learning more engaging and advancing diversity and inclusion…

Customizing Shoes for the Community

In Valparaiso University’s College of Business, students gain skills that prepare them for today’s globalized business environment. But young entrepreneurs, such as Jake Miller ’22, don’t have to wait until graduation to utilize their education. Jake, a business management major, started his own business, JEM Custom Shoes, in 2015. While his journey into entrepreneurship preceded his acceptance to Valpo, his experience in the College of Business has provided the skills and knowledge he needs to succeed in his business endeavors. “The College of Business wants you to succeed and gives you the opportunities you need to grow,” Jake says. “The skills I’m developing in class coincide with what I’m already doing with JEM Custom Shoes. I’ve been able to apply class projects — like designing a website — to my business, which has helped me better understand various marketing and business techniques.” JEM Custom Shoes began as a hobby for…

A Singular Focus

“Start early. Stay hungry.” This common refrain for students in Valparaiso University’s College of Business guides them as they pursue meaningful opportunities to establish themselves in the business community. Students like Gavin Twigg ’21 complete essential on-the-job learning to complement the College’s curriculum. Gavin, an accounting and finance double-major, is working as an audit-assurance intern with EY Consulting. “My business classes at Valpo have helped prepare me for my internship,” Gavin says. “While my audit class had the most direct correlation, a lot of the time it helps to go back to the basics. In my lower-level accounting classes, I did so much work to understand the principles, which are helpful to reference in a real job environment.” In his role, Gavin is assigned to audit various metrics for his clients including payroll, inventory, and accounts payable. He tests samples of data to ensure employees are paid correctly, products are…

Valparaiso University Appoints Dean to College of Business

Valparaiso University announces Niclas L. Erhardt, Ph.D., will join its faculty as dean of the College of Business, effective August 3, 2020. Most recently, Erhardt has served as associate dean of the Maine Business School at the University of Maine. In his role as dean, Erhardt will be responsible for the strategic leadership, coordination and guidance of the College of Business. Erhardt brings more than 18 years of higher education experience in various positions relating to business and management. Erhardt has spent his career strengthening alumni relationships and building external partnerships in the business community. One of his most successful initiatives as associate dean was the creation of the Corporate Classroom internship program, cultivating key partnerships with three major employers in Maine. “We look forward to the dedication Dean Erhardt will bring to the College of Business as he ushers in a new era for the College,” said Rick Gillman,…

AACSB International Reaffirms Accreditation for Valparaiso University’s College of Business

Valparaiso University’s College of Business has maintained its business accreditation by AACSB International — The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. The five-year accreditation confirms that the College of Business continues to uphold and exemplify the standards of an elite business school. “The College of Business is dedicated to a high-quality learning environment that ensures each student can reach their full potential,” said James D. Brodzinski, Ph.D., dean of the College of Business. “AACSB Accreditation challenges us to pursue excellence and continually improve our business programs to renew the College’s commitment to graduating students of promise.” Valpo consistently achieves national recognition for best teaching and value and as one of the best universities in the Midwest. The most recent College of Business report revealed 96% of 2017–2018 graduates are currently employed or attending graduate school. “It takes a great deal of commitment and determination to earn and maintain AACSB…

Areas of Expertise Expand Thanks to New Faculty

As the 2019-2020 year began, the College of Business welcomed three new professors to strengthen the College’s already extraordinary reputation. Michelle van Solt Reyes joined the marketing faculty while Antoine Busby and Marcie Sariol joined the management faculty. Michelle van Solt Reyes, assistant professor in marketing, earned her Ph.D. in marketing at Florida International University earlier this year while simultaneously teaching undergraduate courses at the university. Professor van Solt Reyes’ research interests include consumer psychology and decision making and the fear of missing out. She also holds a master’s degree in international business from Florida International University. Antoine Busby, assistant professor of management, earned his Ph.D. in business administration at University of Texas – San Antonio while teaching and researching at the university. Professor Busby’s ongoing research includes the consequence of emotional labor on organizations, collective-individualism and discrimination against outgroup members, and model of trickle-down justice, justice climate, and implicit…

Creating a Legacy: Montel Hall ’18 blazes own trail academically and athletically

Montel Hall is not one to let the unknown stop him. Whether that entails being a first-generation college student and NCAA Division I athlete, starting a fraternity, or now living and working in the country’s largest city, he is more than willing — and able — to blaze his own trail. At the center of many of these firsts for Montel was Valparaiso University, and he would have it no other way. Montel says that, when it came time to make his college decision, he didn’t know a lot about the process. A couple of high school friends had gone to Valpo; the college was about a two-hour drive from his hometown and, just as important, had a fully accredited business school. And he had a dream of being a Division I athlete. Time to soar Having played basketball all four years of high school, Montel says he had a…

Introducing the Integrated Business and Engineering Bachelor’s Program

Valpo’s College of Engineering is partnering with the College of Business to offer an interdisciplinary bachelor’s degree program for students interested in both subjects, beginning fall 2019. The integrated business and engineering degree will prepare students for a multitude of careers on the business side of technical companies or for graduate studies in areas like business administration and project management. There is a growing need for graduates who can combine creative thinking with technical knowledge. A recent study from Burning Glass Technologies reported that jobs that utilize both creative thinking and analytical problem solving represent some of the fastest growing and highest paying occupations. Additionally, these positions are less likely to become automated by machines or programs, indicating job security. The Bureau of Labor Statistics shows a solid job outlook as well, with a projected 7% percent increase in jobs from 2016 to 2026. The program will feature coursework in…

Valparaiso University Alumnus Supports Business Scholarship

A $1 million gift from the estate of Valparaiso University alumnus William “Bill” Schlender ’41 has significantly boosted a scholarship fund he established in 2007. The preference of the William E. Schlender Endowed Scholarship Fund is to award need-based scholarships to College of Business students of the Lutheran faith who are in their junior or senior year. Schlender earned a bachelor of arts in business and economics from Valparaiso University. He went on to receive an MBA from the University of Denver and a Ph.D. in philosophy from The Ohio State University. His distinguished academic career included being a faculty member at Valpo’s College of Business from 1976 to 1986. During that he time, he was the initial recipient of the Richard E. Meier Professor of Management, which he held from 1983 until his retirement in 1986. Previously, he held the Lutheran Laymen’s League Professor of Business Ethics from 1976…

Valparaiso University Alumnus Establishes Endowed Business Professorship and Scholarship

Valparaiso University alumnus Michael “Mike” Gruszyk ’85 has generously committed $1.3 million to fund an endowed professorship and a scholarship in the College of Business. His gift will be divided between the Michael Gruszyk Endowed Professorship in Business and the Michael Gruszyk Endowed Scholarship Fund. “I am fortunate to be in a position to give back to the university that gave so much to me,” Gruszyk said. “I attended the College of Business with a very specific career goal in mind, and the faculty helped make that a reality. They understood that my goal was to work in retail management for JC Penney and guided my academic progress toward achieving that goal.” Gruszyk’s retail career extends almost 30 years. After graduating from Valpo’s College of Business with a bachelor of science in business administration and concentration in marketing, he worked in management positions with JC Penney for more than 15…

Finance Department Welcomes New Faculty

This fall Jiun-Lin (“Alex”) Chen, Ph.D., joined the College of Business as assistant professor of finance. “Dr. Chen brings considerable experience in teaching finance to the college and will augment our efforts to further develop the student-management investment fund,” says Jim Brodzinski, Ph.D., dean of the college of business. Prior to his arrival at Valpo, Professor Chen served as a full-time lecturer in finance for nearly a decade at the University of Adelaide in Adelaide, Australia, teaching both undergraduate and graduate courses and mentoring Ph.D. students as well as two honor students through their research. Professor Chen’s extensive teaching experience also includes eight years of service as a full-time lecturer in Taiwan at the Tainan University of Technology and at Louisiana State University while he obtained his doctorate. At Valpo, Professor Chen fills a similar role in terms of teaching and research as he did at the University of Adelaide.…