The 845 miles standing between Dayton and Boston did not intimidate junior marketing major Evan Rawbon.
As vice president of professional affairs for UD’s Delta Sigma Pi (DSP), a professional business fraternity, Rawbon coordinated a networking trip to Boston over spring break. From Feb. 27 to March 3, a group of 19 business students traveled with Rawbon.
“I pitched going to Boston because I thought it was a place that doesn’t have a big DSP alumni base,” Rawbon said. “I wanted to get our name out there and tell Boston-based companies what we do so when we graduate having DSP on our resumes will help us stand out.”
As a Cleveland native with no Boston connections, Rawbon secured tours by cold calling and reaching out to employers and recruiters on LinkedIn.
After nearly two months of planning, the group visited companies including: Smartsheet, TripAdvisor, HubSpot, AMP Agency, Boston Celtics and The Boston Beer Company.
Professionals talked about the ups and downs of their career paths, providing insight into what students should be looking for in post-graduation positions. Students were prompted to consider what size, culture and region fits their personality and work ethic best. Rawbon recalled the group being asked if they want to “make a big impact in a small pond” or work for a larger company where there is more opportunity for growth?
“Hearing first-hand from individuals from all types of fields was very helpful, as we are currently sorting out what we want to do for future work,” said Katie Hamor, junior marketing and management information systems major. “It was time well spent as I came back feeling confident and eager for my future in business.”
Gaining professional advice does not stop in Boston, however, as Rawbon is currently planning a “mini trip” to visit companies in Cleveland next month.
DSP began at New York University in 1907 and formed its UD chapter in 1963. In the past, UD DSP members have traveled to Washington D.C., New York City and Dallas to build their professional network.
What do Roesch Library, Marycrest, Fitz Hall and so many other campus locations now have in common with the Heritage Center?
Starting yesterday, they all serve coffee.
The ninth division of the student-operated Flyer Enterprises, Heritage Coffeehouse, opened its doors Wednesday morning, and the line to get coffee is still out the door.
The Heritage Center, originally built in 1903 as a boys’ bathhouse, was most recently a showcase for Flyer history, thanks to the Alumni Association and Division of Advancement, which renovated in 2007 the building known to generations of alumni as the post office. Last year they approached the student business venture to see what use the students might have for the site, with a caveat: It must preserve the spirit of UD’s most faithful alumni, the Golden Flyers.
With two dedicated Flyer Enterprises coffee ventures already on campus, and coffee available at so many more, the students who operate Flyer Enterprises asked, “Why more coffee?”
Peter Hansen, Heritage Coffeehouse director of marketing, answered: “Coffee is a product that has a rich past-time and focus on process. It brings people together.”
And then there’s the unique location, in one of UD’s oldest buildings.
“The ambiance differs from other coffee places on campus,” he said. “It’s more relaxed without being just another restaurant.”
At the opening, alumni John Beran ’74 and Myron Achbach ’52 said a few words on behalf of the Alumni Association and Golden Flyers.
“[H]istory will continue to be shared in this space through the digital screens that give insight to our humble beginnings and our longstanding traditions,” Beran said. Screens in the coffeehouse display moments and photographs from UD’s 167-year history.
While standing in line on the new gray tile flooring, you can tell that this coffeehouse feels different. The baristas, trained onsite at Boston Stoker, grind fresh espresso beans and serve high-quality products.
“It’s so refreshing to be in this environment,” said Allie Rubin ’18 as she sipped her cold brew and shared this simple pleasure of life: “I am able to sit and drink coffee with friends.”
Like many high school seniors, Chauntyele Tinsley isn’t entirely sure what career path she intends on pursuing. Luckily for students like Tinsley, the University of Dayton offers programs like Entrepreneurship 101 to assist in figuring it out.
This summer’s two-week program gave rising high school juniors and seniors as well as rising college freshman the opportunity to learn more about the field of entrepreneurship and experience student life on campus, all while earning college credit.
Tinsley took Biz 102, an introduction to business course, during her junior year. When she completed the program, her college liaison ask her to be a part of the Entrepreneurship program after she completed the course. Among Tinsley’s favorite experiences during the two-week program were the site visits to Mikesell’s Snack Food Co. and Logos@Work.
Tinsley said the program allowed her to get a feel for how businesses are run locally and see the entrepreneurial side of her city.
A student at Dayton Early College Academy, Tinsley wasn’t far from home but got a feel for college life while staying with other students in Founders Hall. In addition to site visits, she and her classmates created pitches for a business or idea that they presented during a competition Friday, June 30. Students had the chance to win four-year scholarships to the University of Dayton for placing in the competition.
Tinsley was nervous for the competition but spent time preparing.
“I’ve been asking others for ideas, having them look at my ideas and asking them which is the best one,” Tinsley said.
Tinsley’s idea for the pitch competition was a dissolving pill patch, specialized for people who need to take medication but are unable to swallow pills.
Editors Note: Tom Columbus is editor emeritus of University of Dayton Magazine. Prior to working at the magazine, Tom worked in the English department at the University.
Suzanne and I walked through the door at Arrow Wine for its Saturday morning wine tasting. We were the old married couple among much younger folk in Tom Davis’ Wines of the World course at UD. That Saturday was a busy day — grandkids at our house during the day, Flyer basketball at night. So, when we saw the group at Arrow was a bunch of men who all seemed to know each other, we hesitated to join them, having what looked like more enjoyable, more comfortable, things to do.
As we were about to leave, two young women came in. We discerned they were students by their age and by their carrying our course textbook, Wine for Dummies. So we stayed and drank some wine and met people and talked.
Tom sent the tenor of the class early in the semester with a story about his military days, of being far away from home one night with comrades and strangers and of their talking about their lives, about the world, about everything.
We expected him to then tell us what wine they had that night. But they had no wine, just cheap beer. The important part was the talk, the togetherness, people sharing themselves with others.
Tom knew an infinite amount about wine. He generously shared the contents of his cellar and his mind. But his life — he died June 11 — was about far more. It may be trite to say it was about community, but it was. We learned about wine and about the countries that it came from and the earth and air and water that nurtured it. We learned about people. We learned about each other.
After a 13-hour flight, it was New Year’s Day when students hopped off the plane to ring in the new year, on a new continent. The 18 students traveling with the School of Business Administration (SBA) to China and Hong Kong had arrived at the starting point of a two-week journey.
In conjunction with the University of Dayton China Institute, faculty members Paul Sweeney, Terence Lau and Vince Lewis guided students across Asia during the spring 2017 intersession.
“In China, there is enormous and unprecedented economic growth and success,” Sweeney said. “No one has come further, faster in history than China, and it’s worth it for our students to understand that.”
Students who enrolled in the International Business course (INB 352), Doing Business in China and Hong Kong, prepared with bi-weekly meetings before travel. Once abroad, the learning was more experiential.
As the group visited nearly 20 different companies, including General Electric, Jabil, PwC, Crown and Emerson.
“The experience brought to life a lot of the concepts we discuss in class,” said junior entrepreneurship major Lyric Fields. “It reminded me why I’m in school doing what I’m doing now.”
When not visiting companies, students were tasting new foods, like octopus and jelly fish skin, and exploring the Great Wall of China, Forbidden City, Imperial Summer Palace and other historic landmarks.
“The culture was different in every city we visited — from Beijing to Shanghai to Suzhou,” said junior international business and economics major Nathan Stemen. “I learned I have a deep appreciation for culture and new ideas, and I can definitely see myself living and working abroad in the future.”
This was the second year the SBA offered the trip with plans to offer it again over the spring 2018 intersession. Interested students should contact Paul Sweeney at email@example.com in the fall for more details.
University of Dayton alumnus Zach McHale won first place and $25,000 for his stadium seat device in the University of Dayton’s 11th annual Flyer Pitch competition, one of the largest collegiate-level business plan contests in the country.
McHale’s patent-pending Neet Seat is a pouch that can be attached to stadium and arena seats to hold coats and other items. McHale, a 2006 graduate who studied chemical engineering, was announced as the winner during a banquet Tuesday night after six rounds of multi-national competition featuring more than 200 teams.
On March 25, teams had 20 minutes each to pitch business ideas to a table of judges, followed by 10 minutes of questions. The judges included business advisors, investors and others involved in Dayton’s start-up ecosystem.
“The quality of the teams has gotten better year after year,” said Vincent Lewis, director of the L. William Crotty Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership at the University. “This year’s six finalists are all fundable business opportunities, with three of the finalists already having sold some products and one already having raised some capital. It is exciting through the course of the competition to see the teams develop ideas and transform them into viable opportunities.”
More than 200 teams applied to take part in Flyer Pitch, which took place in Dayton, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam and Suzhou, China.
Since the competition began, 27 businesses have been launched, 20 of which are still in business today.
Second place, and $15,000, went to a former professional baseball player, Jim Ward, and his daughter, UD alumna Tiffany Pikas ’05, for their design of Hit-Grip — a patented device to help control and improve the swing of baseball players and golfers.
Third place went to a group of current UD students who developed the Solar Thermal Adsorption Refrigeration (S.T.A.R) system, an environmentally friendly refrigeration method designed for usage in areas without reliable power grids. The group was awarded $10,000.
“This is definitely the first step for us into the business world in a journey that I am sure is going to get more exciting,” said S.T.A.R. team member Claudia Labrador Rached. “I truly believe that S.T.A.R. can make an impact in the developing world, where vaccine access and health care quality are compromised by the lack of reliable supply of electricity.”
The remaining three teams tied for fourth place, winning $5,000 each.
UD students are provided with the B.E.S.S.T opportunities. During the January Intercession, Jan. 5-12, nine students attended the first Business Experience: Silicon Valley and San Francisco Today.
B.E.S.S.T. is a unique educational opportunity for business majors to visit corporations and major financial institutions across Silicon Valley and the Bay area.
Professors Irene Dickey and Tracy Miller, both full-time faculty in the School of Business, wanted UD students to experience the real-world issues facing their field, so they turned to former students and LinkedIn to rekindle and build new alumni connections.
Over 10 alumni opened the doors of their homes and offices to speak about their take on management and marketing to millennials. Students had the chance to visit global venture capital firm Canaan Partners, advertising software firm Sharethrough and tech firm Oracle, among other major businesses in the area.
“At all the companies we visited, they weren’t talking at us,” said junior marketing major Jamie Stumph. “Even the CEO’s were interested in hearing what we had to say.”
While in California the students immersed into the opportunity and wrote blog posts each day in reflection.
“I am leaving San Francisco today feeling inspired and motivated to go out and work to achieve all of the many goals I have,” Stumph wrote. “These people are proof that if you put your mind to something and really believe in yourself, amazing things will happen.”
Students also participated in five pre-trip and two post-trip class sessions in order to gain MGT and MKT 494 credit. They studied and presented on each company before the trip, allowing them to come prepared to ask questions and maximize the session benefit.
“Irene and I really pushed them out of their comfort zones,” Miller said. “But, I really found if you set student expectations high, they will rise to the challenge.”
To hear more about the students’ experiences, attend their Stander Symposium presentation on Wednesday, April 5 at 1 p.m. in Miriam Hall room 213.
Being a college athlete is by no means easy. Juggling 20 plus hours of practice per week, working towards a career, and managing a social life; many would say the possibility of free time, let alone traveling to another country for five weeks, is nonexistent. Not everyone is up for the task, but student athletes Zach Kavanaugh ’18 and Nathan Marotta ’18 showed it was possible.
Kavanaugh, a member of the UD soccer team, and Marotta, a football player, participated in the UD business in Spain program this summer.
It is rare for athletes to fit in time to study abroad, and not only did they make it happen, but they were praised by UD’s onsite coordinators for being engaged leaders on the program through their example and “go-to” attitudes.
“It was really difficult at first, trying to weigh the pros and cons of a five-week study abroad trip regarding its effects on my soccer career at Dayton,” Kavanaugh stated. “I was very hesitant to complete the application for studying abroad because the summer is typically a time where fall sport athletes are at their peak because they are training so hard. I came to the decision to study abroad because I realized this was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Studying abroad isn’t about learning… it’s about experiencing. Spain forced me to step out of my comfort zone and I couldn’t be happier with my experience.”
Marotta shared his classmates enthusiasm for the cultural and educational experience. “I learned a lot about the culture of Spain and met a bunch of great people,” he said. “It was an eye-opening experience that showed me how people and businesses interact with each other in a different part of the world. I embraced their culture by trying new foods, dances, lifestyles, and visiting new cities. It turned out to be the best decision I made for this summer experience that I will never forget.”
Pat Glaser Shea grew up privileged. “I had a family that loved me and parents who valued education,” Shea explained.
The daughter of a steel worker in West Virginia, Shea has been the CEO of YWCA Nashville & Middle Tennessee, the largest provider of domestic violence services in the state, for 10 years and sees the absence of such privilege every day.
In 1984, the UD marketing graduate settled in Nashville, Tennessee, and began to volunteer at the YWCA, where she saw firsthand the effects of violence and abuse on women and girls. “When women and girls aren’t able to live up to their potential due to abuse, we all lose out,” said Shea.
After a 20-year career in health care, Shea now focuses on ending gender violence by locating root causes. “We have been missing 50 percent of the population, thus half of the equation,” said Shea. “It is time to involve men, to invite good men to be part of the solution.”
Shea has become an outspoken advocate for engaging men in the effort to end violence against women and girls. In March 2015, she gave the TEDxNashville talk, “Violence Against Women: The End Begins with Men.”
In her talk, Shea states there are three things everyone can do: know the facts and elevate the issue, as violence against women is an epidemic; work to change our culture that belittles and devalues women and girls; and teach boys that loving and respecting women and girls is part of healthy masculinity. Shea said, “When women are valued and safe, we are able to be better mothers, sisters, daughters and partners. Everybody benefits.”