Two teams of students from the College of Business recently competed in the CME Group’s annual Commodity Trading Challenge. There were a total of 392 teams in the competition, which is an annual event in which teams of undergraduate and graduate students compete by trading futures contracts in a simulated environment on the CME Group’s electronic trading platform. Students perform trades of futures contracts on products such as corn, soybeans, natural gas, and Euro futures in an attempt to maintain the highest overall portfolio value. The top teams with the most highly valued portfolios receive cash prizes and the honor of being crowned champions. Lewis University’s two teams performed quite well, although neither was able to take home one of the coveted prizes. The graduate team Lewis University Flyers comprised Carolann Thompson, and Mark Duris; and the undergraduate team Lewis University flyers 2 consisted of Andrew Knapik, Alessandro Mazza, and Jake Dopler.
Brian Pichman, Director of Strategic Innovation at the Evolve Project and graduate student here in the College of Business is on a quest to change how libraries service their communities via the Evolve Project. He believes that as the demands and desires of a community change, that community’s library must seek to adapt and evolve to meet these needs. The Evolve Project is based on the belief that “The more innovative a library becomes, the more important a library is.” After all libraries are a valuable resource, but some people characterize libraries as dated or even pointless as a result of today’s technology driven society. In order to overcome this hurdle, libraries must innovate and seek to provide not only a safe and comfortable environment in which to find information, but something more valuable and exciting that people may not have access to elsewhere.
One way some libraries have already begun to reassert themselves is by creating maker spaces for local entrepreneurs and artists. A maker space is essentially a locally operated work area containing important resources in which people of common interests can collaborate, socialize, and work. These often hold expensive resources that entrepreneurs and artists can’t find elsewhere such as 3d printers, and are a great place to find people to partner or socialize with. Through the Evolve Project, Brian and his partner Dave Hesse plan to help libraries revisit their real purpose and how they can be of value to the community. “The Evolve Project will bring institutions into the future, through innovative and interactive technologies and designs; inspiring exploration and collaboration to push people beyond the digital age.” (The Evolve Project, 2014)
To learn more about the Evolve Project, visit their blog at www.evolveproject.org
Dr. Manu Vora, adjunct professor for the College of Business and international authority on organizational change recently gave a lecture at the Indian Institute of Technology on Sustainable Change Management for Excellence. The lecture was aimed at helping students understand what Change Management for Excellence is, why it is important for a business to change with its environment, and how to best utilize the key aspects of change management tools to successfully manage change and achieve excellence in organizations. This lecture was a great opportunity for students to learn about how the operational landscape of businesses changes day to day, how to sustainably change within an organization, and why it is important to turn market change into a competitive advantage. Dr. Vora teaches Risk Management in the Masters of Science in Project Management Program here at Lewis University.
A study coauthored by Drs. Robert Atra and Yuntaek Pae was recently published in The Journal of Financial Planning. The study about the “benefits of choosing the HIFO method for tracking shares when liquidating portfolio assets” is an analysis of how an investor can improve their net worth by choosing the proper accounting methods to manage their investments. By selling off high basis assets first, an investor can increase their total wealth at the point of retirement by between .5% and 1.0%. If an investment scenario also involves “above average tax rates and or greater returns”, then the potential for increasing one’s wealth by utilizing HIFO accounting practices is even greater. Part of this is explained as a result of the time value of money making it more valuable to an investor to “receive tax benefits sooner rather than later”. They go on to emphasize the fact that many mutual funds and other investment vehicles have a default option that is typically either FIFO or Average Cost, and that it may benefit individuals to look into how their investments are setup.
The study debuted in the January 2014 issue of The Journal of Financial Planning. As described on The Financial Planning Association’s website, the journal is a peer reviewed publication meant to “expand the body of knowledge of the financial planning profession.” It is distributed monthly to over 53,000 financial planning professionals and other interested parties.
Lewis University’s chapter of The American Marketing Association recently had the honor of hosting the Senior Executive Director of Marketing for The Chicago Blackhawks, Peter Hassen. Mr. Hassen spoke to a group of approximately 70 students and faculty about the world of sports marketing and how The Chicago Blackhawks marketing department has utilized the franchise’s unique history and loyal fan-base to go from a struggling organization that kind of fell by the wayside, to the envy of the entire league. He discussed ways to succeed as a marketer and recommended that students seek out internships and life experiences in order to try their hand at a lot of things. “It is important to find out both what you like and what you are good at” he said. Mr. Hassen also discussed how the marketing department has adapted and remained fan focused as the team experiences great success both on and off the ice. Along with members of the Lewis community in the audience, students were joined by representatives from Benedictine University’s newly formed chapter of The American Marketing Association. Overall it was a great presentation that shed light on some of the potential careers marketing students can look forward to after graduation, as well as the inner-workings of a great sports franchise and Chicago staple, The Chicago Blackhawks.
The Illinois Technology Foundation is an organization centered around recognizing and supporting Illinois’ best technology students and professionals in order to encourage them to stay in Illinois. For each of the past seven years, they have honored sixty Illinois technology students with their Fifty For the Future Award. Three College of Business students were honored to receive the award this year. Ryan O’Keefe seeking his Master of Business Administration, Jon Pankhurst B.S. Information Security, and Staff Sgt. Juan Vasquez B.S. in Finance, Information Security, and Computer Information Systems.
All of the winners were invited to attend an awards ceremony and networking event at the Chicago Cultural Center. Reiterating the advice of the award ceremony’s keynote speaker about the importance of understanding business functions by IT professionals, Dr. Faisal Abdullah Professor and Chair of Management Information Systems said “The award recognizes the top IT Talent in Chicago. It also is a testament to the IT curriculum in the MBA, Computer Information Systems and Information Security programs taught in the College of Business. Business requirements drive IT and our curriculum enables students to be IT leaders in organizations. “
The Annual Fifty For The Future® Celebration recognizes exceptional students with an interest in and potential to use technology in innovative ways. Winners are chosen through a rigorous nomination and judging process, focused on high school through university and graduate level programs. The Fifty For The Future® Celebration provides encouragement and recognition to students who pursue innovation through technology, providing access to business leaders to showcase their talent. The celebration is attended by industry leaders, judges, winners and their families, Foundation sponsors and other supporters of the technology industry.
Lewis University’s Lasallian roots have guided the school to provide a well-rounded and practical education to as many students as possible. This involves combining real world experience with traditional education and often leads to collaboration between Lewis and other Lasallian institutions. In this spirit of collaboration, College of Business professor Dr. Frank Rose recently spent time speaking to two classes at Unilasalle – Centro Universitario LaSalle in Canoas, Brazil.
He presented to the 50 students and two faculty members on The future of the Chinese Economy from an American Perspective via blackboard collaborate. Dr. Rose and Dr. Ian Gladding actually visited the University in person a few years ago in order to help build on the collaboration between the two institutions. The lecture went smoothly and the students and faculty really enjoyed the presentation. Hopefully this will lead to even more collaboration between Lewis and other Lasallian institutions worldwide.
Faculty here in The College of Business have recently started a standing tradition of getting together to share research they are involved in. These Scholar’s Luncheons are an opportunity for interested faculty to discuss the topics of their research in order to gain additional insights and perspectives on their research activities from their peers. This practice began last year, and there have been 4 meetings so far. At the most recent Scholar’s luncheon, Dr. Yuntaek Pae presented his research on Idiosyncratic Volatility vs. Cash Flow Volatility. His research involves using the “Dupont Analysis to analyze the cross sectional relationship between idiosyncratic volatility and financial cash flow volatility.” Dean of the college Dr. Rami Khasawneh, Assistant Dean Mike Progress, Dr. Ian Gladding, Dr. Robert Atra, Dr. Frank Rose, and Dr. Ibrahim Mescioglu were all in attendance.
It is international Education Month at Lewis University and this year The College of Business is hosting a Topics in International Business Speaker Series to discuss International Business and how to operate as a business in various countries. Speakers will be discussing the business climates in Japan, Turkey, Palestine, and South Korea on Thursdays for four weeks.
The series got off to a great start on October 31st with a presentation about doing business in Japan given by William Johnson, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Cabot Microelectronics. There were approximately 55 students in attendance and the presentation was very well received. There are still three more events to enjoy so anyone interested please see the schedule below. If you have any questions please Contact: Dr. Frank Rose, email@example.com, Tel: 815-836-5802.
All Sessions run from 3:30 – 4:30 pm in Benilde Hall (The College of Business); Room BE-167.
Doing Business in Japan – Thursday, October 31st
William Johnson, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Cabot Microelectronics
Doing Business in Turkey – Thursday, November 7th
Dr. Ibrahim Mescioglu, Assistant Professor of Management Information Systems
College of Business, Lewis University
Doing Business in Palestine – Thursday, November 14th
Iyad Rock, Graduate Student
College of Business, Lewis University
Doing Business in South Korea – Thursday, November 21st
Dr. Yuntaek Pae, Assitant Professor of Finance
College of Business, Lewis University
On Oct. 16th, Steve McHugh, a 1981 Marketing alum, came back to campus to speak with College of Business students. McHugh is Senior Vice-President of Research Expertise at Millward Brown, an international research firm with offices in more than 50 countries.
He discussed his day to day activities as well as covering some of the things he believes a student should do to succeed in market research; putting a specific emphasis on the importance of internships in today’s job market. “As much as you can, do any internship. You want it to be as relevant to what you want to do in the future as possible. Maybe you don’t know what is relevant yet, but just show that you are doing something.”
“I thought it was a very informative presentation that was very helpful for individuals who may be considering marketing as a major.” -Vice President of Communications for AMA, Joshua Resto. More than 90 College of Business students were in attendance.