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Message from the Dean

  Dean Mohan Tanniru *
Transforming lives

This fall, it's more evident than ever that the SBA is hard at work ensuring our impact on students' lives is transformational.  From the environment the SBA offers through space renovations and new labs to improve students lives and their educational experience, to a continued focus on offering students the chance to gain real skills through summer internship programs and student organizations -- we're focused on enhancing the expertise students find in the classroom with an enriching environment and intensive experiences that will help them succeed long after graduation.

That's a longstanding objective at the SBA -- making sure our graduates are fully prepared to succeed in the real world. The success and accomplishments of two of our alumni showcased in this newsletter attest to the effectiveness of our efforts, and their involvement with the SBA after graduation will help our current students see how they can make a difference in the world.

With this issue of SBA Insight Online, we continue to bring our pillars of integrative thinking, experiential learning and global understanding to life by weaving them throughout the SBA experience and create a business education that achieves Excellence through Integration.

*Image created by and supplied courtesy of Michael G. Mitchell, owner of Paonia Peddler Gallery, Paonia, CO. Mitchell is former president/CEO of an automotive supplier which sponsored OU SBA students in the ATiB program.

Introducing: Stinson Student Advancement Center

Architect's rendering of
SBA's new student center.

You're invited to be part of the celebration and unveiling of the SBA's new Stinson Student Advancement Center, Monday, Dec. 13, at 5 p.m., second floor, Elliott Hall. Join us in person or online through our live Webcast which will be available via a link from the SBA home page at that day. To join us in person, please RSVP to Lisa Desmet at

This event will celebrate phase two of the Elliott Hall renovation, as the SBA continues transforming its spaces to help transform student lives.

>>Read more>>

CIBRE interns help launch nonprofit, giving charity a technological boost

SBA students Nick Morana
and Daniel Ring with CIBRE project
sponsors and OPC mentor.

When Oakland University SBA students Nick Morana and Daniel Ring signed up for a CIBRE Summer Internship last summer, they never imagined they would be asked to help launch a new business.

Since last June, Morana and Ring have been developing a business plan for a project designed to change the way people help one another. Karmagora is a Web-based, interactive time bank program that allows participants worldwide to deposit and withdraw credits – karmas – that represent 15 minutes of volunteer service each. Karmas are created by service and can be redeemed to receive service.

>>Read more>>

SBA alumni connect local charities with volunteer network

Rob Ray and
Doug Van Slembrouck

Two SBA alumni seized an opportunity to harness the power of social networking to connect non-profit organizations with a network of young professionals who can offer time, energy and creativity.

The result: The Social Philanthropist's Foundation ( which Rob Ray, SBA Finance '04, Doug Van Slembrouck, SBA MIS '01, created to support local Michigan non-profit agencies. Together the pair turned their shared interest in community involvement and belief that many non-profit agencies were disconnected from young professionals into action.

>>Read more>>

Collaborative experience, real-world experts adds value to EMBA program

Dr. Christopher Milback

Throughout his 13 years in family medicine, Dr. Christopher Milback firmly believed in the benefits of preventative health care.

But it wasn't until he completed his capstone project for his Executive MBA (EMBA) degree at Oakland University's School of Business Administration that he was able to connect the positive impact of preventative medicine to health care's bottom line. For his capstone assignment, Milback made a case for investing upfront not only in primary medical care, but investing equally in well-chosen preventative measures.

>>Read more>>

Safety First: MBA alum finds purpose in automotive career

Robert Fisher

Since launching his career in the automotive industry 28 years ago, Robert Fisher, MBA '92, has carried with him a strong sense of purpose.

Fisher, who built a career with custom automotive safety system manufacturer Takata, is now executive vice president at the company that's focused on safety.
"The owners of the company are very passionate; we save lives," says Fisher, who is responsible for purchasing, engineering, advanced product development and program management for Takata North and South America. "Being part of the automotive industry, but being in the safety restraint side, is very rewarding because you're making a difference."

>>Read more>>

Graduate students gain global marketing education in the renewable energy sector

Expert instruction is melding with hands-on experiences in the SBA to give students a strong foundation for success in today's global marketplace. That approach was evident in Professor John Henke Jr.'s Strategic Marketing Class (MKT 608).

Graduate students conducted an extensive research project for Oakland County in cooperation with graduate students from the T.A. Pai Management Institute in India. Students zeroed in on solar energy and wind power and what it would take to attract businesses from these industries.

>>Read more>>

Economics department welcomes new advisory board member

Paul Traub

The School of Business Administration's Economic department recently welcomed Paul Traub, SBA MBA '91, to its advisory board.

Traub is president of Scenario Economics LLC,  an independent economic research and forecasting company specializing in the analysis of the ever-changing economic landscape and its potential impact on the business environment, and a senior economist for Americas Commercial Transportation Research Company, LLC (ACT Research), a recognized leader in data, market analysis and forecasting for the commercial vehicle industry.

>>Read more>>

New club gives students SAIFE investment experiences

The School of Business Administration's new student investment club has a two-fold goal. Not only is the Society for Applied Investing and Financial Education (SAIFE) student organization designed to teach students the basics of financial investing, it strives to help members avoid potentially devastating financial missteps by offering them a safe way to practice their new-found skills.

"It's really to give students exposure to decision-making in investments before graduation," says Ryan Firman, SBA '10, who co-founded SAIFE last summer with fellow SBA students Vincent Asmar and Chris Becker.

>>Read more>>

Accounting organization nationally recognized for diversity initiatives

Long considered a superior chapter, the OU SBA student chapter of Beta Alpha Psi (BAP) is now the recipient of the 2010 Ernst and Young Diversity Initiative Award. One of only ten chapters nationwide to receive this award, the professional accounting organization was recognized for its projects -- on campus and in the community -- which demonstrate how it embraces and supports diversity.

Ernst and Young sponsors and presents the award to encourage future business leaders to value the contribution of all people, and develop effective teaming which incorporates the diversity of thought generated from team members from different backgrounds and perspectives.

>>Read more>>

CIBRE to bring international IS conference to Detroit in August 2011

More than 1,200 IS/IT academicians and students are expected to attend the SBA-sponsored
AMCIS 2011 Conference in Detroit, Mich., next August.

One of the leading conferences in the industry, AMCIS presents the broadest variety of research
by and for IS/IT academicians from all over the world. The 2011 conference will explore the theme "Renaissance of Information Technology for Sustainability and Global Competitiveness" by showcasing how IT can be a bigger part of the renaissance picture as firms worldwide focus on sustainability and global competitiveness.

>>Read more>>

Fall 2010
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Center for Integrated Business Research and Education

OU Home

November 19, 2010
Mexico: A Multifaceted NAFTA Partner
What you need to know about doing business in/with Mexico

November 20, 2010
Executive MBA Information Session

December 13, 2010
Grand Opening: Stinson Student Advancement Center

January 14, 2011
Classes Start: Energy Management Certificate Program

January 28-30, 2011
OU Homecoming 

February 17, 2011
MBA Alumni Night in the O'Rena: OU vs. South Dakota State University

January 29, 2011
SBA Homecoming Event 

March 24, 2011
Alice Connor Gorlin Memorial Lecture
Featuring: Carmen Reinhart, professor of economics, and director, Center for International Economics at University of Maryland; author of best-seller "This Time Is Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly"

August 2011
Americas Conference on Information Systems (AMCIS) 2011

School of Business Administration
Elliott Hall
2200 North Squirrel Road
Rochester, MI 48309-4484
(248) 370-3286
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