Category Archives: Upcoming Events

Bright Beginnings for Cohort 16

Stetson’s EMBA program officially congratulates Cohort 16 for completing their first module in this 1 ½ year experience. In a sheer 45 days, an inquisitive group of professionals have met and developed strong new friendships with their cohort-mates who have already become instrumental partners in one another’s learning and Professional Development plans.

Cohort 16’s own Megan Griffin shares with us that she is “loving the program so far and can’t believe [their] first classes are almost over already!” She especially loved the scavenger hunt around Celebration, saying that it gave her a chance to not only become more familiar with the Celebration area, but also to bond with her cohort.

Indeed, Cohort 16 has already had significant exposure to many of the program’s components.  “I loved the first few days of my cohort life! The previous cohort is so friendly and inviting, and the classes have been engaging and great,” stated Joe Styron. They began their journey in mid-August with Orientation, their team-building Scavenger hunt, and an immersive Station Day filled with EMBA alumni, current students, faculty, and an executive coach who helped them grow both individually as leaders and collectively as a cohesive unit.

Our EMBA Alumni Steering Committee gathered members from six cohorts to welcome Cohort 16 and reunite with Cohort 15 after class for a Happy Hour. What a wonderful nightcap to an action-packed day!

Cohort 16 can be extremely proud of their diligent efforts and successful completion of 2 of 17 courses, a fulfilling accomplishment that each student handled with flying colors, as the pictures reflect!

We know they are ready for the ride ahead and look forward to participating and tracking their progress throughout their program.  

Spend A Day the Cohort Way, During the EMBA Test Drive

Stetson’s EMBA Test drive allows potential EMBA students to experience our innovative curriculum and immersive learning environment designed to accelerate your career and broaden your business acumen. Cohort 15 members Laurie Warfield and Nicole Amero reflect on how last year’s Test Drive positively impacted their experience with the program, and even played a key role in their decision to attend our EMBA program.


Laurie Warfield had been “contemplating going back to school for a Master’s Degree for several years.” Laurie needed a program that was in-person and fit around her work schedule. After exploring the programs in Central Florida, she found Stetson’s EMBA program and thought that it looked “like a great fit”. After talking with Wendy, the director of EMBA program admissions, Laurie decided to attend an EMBA Test Drive event.

The Test Drive event solidified my decision to enroll in Stetson. It was a personalized, in-depth and engaging session that allowed us to meet alumni and prospective students alike. It was energizing to be in a room with so many successful professionals from a variety of career fields!

A particular positive of the Test Drive experience for Laurie was the chance to hear stories from the program alumni; “they expressed how much the program not only changed their career but their life.”

Laurie also found that the program had an enticing diversity of experiences; Laurie has an undergraduate degree in Biology and was delighted in finding that other members of the program also have extensive backgrounds – because of this, Laurie felt that her cohort could be more like a family.

 Together, our strengths and differences would allow us to be successful throughout the 18 – month program. After attending the Test Drive, and learning how personalized and interactive the degree program was, I knew that pursuing an EMBA at Stetson University was perfect for me personally and professionally.

 

 

Nicole Amero had already submitted her application to the program by the time she attended our Test Drive, but was still awaiting her acceptance letter.

The Test Drive definitely was a validation for me that I had made the correct choice in applying to the program.

Nicole particularly appreciated the opportunity of experiencing a classroom setting. She also took the opportunity during lunch meet and greet with members of Cohort 14. Nicole asked the alumni as many questions about the program as she could, and still keeps in touch with Alicia Matheson, whom she discussed the program with at the Test Drive.

Nicole also noted that the Test Drive displayed to her that Stetson is also “focused on the mental health and well-being of each of their students, in addition to their success.” She discovered that there was a “tight-knit” family feel to the current and past programs members, as well as staff and faculty. I could also tell how much of a tight-knit family it is between current students, staff, and alumni.

Nicole also felt more at ease on her first day of classes as she was familiar with the building, as well as the class setting from the Test Drive, and could also recognize faces from both Cohort 14 and Cohort 15.

I think it was the perfect amount of time to get a glimpse into the lifestyle of a Cohort at Stetson in the EMBA program. The free lunch and swag is always cool, too!

 

Andrew Wertheim, a recent Stetson EMBA graduate from Cohort 13, “found the Test Drive sessions to be a valuable resource for prospective students to get a “real world” feel for how a typical EMBA class is run.” Andrew explains that the Test Drives have a “good mix of Alumni who collaboratively participate in case simulations and discussions in much the same way [that they] would do in a class.”

He states that he has “found … students benefit not only from these interactive activities by working closely with [alumni], but it [also] helps to take away some of the “unknown” and break down any apprehensions students might have in terms of their ability to navigate the program successfully.”

Andrew also reflects on the added bonus of the lunch as it “is scheduled along with the current Cohort. This offers potential candidates a chance to open up and really ask questions they’d like to hear firsthand from current students.”

 Overall, the Test Drive is a great “mini-sampling” of what the EMBA program will be like. I recommend it to anyone interested in possibly pursing an EMBA at Stetson.

 

Adam Swiatek is a current EMBA student in Cohort 14, and enjoys sharing “the EMBA experience with prospective students. There’s no better way to experience the EMBA than by spending the day with [current students] during the Test Drive.”

At the Test Drive, you’ll meet “students of the current cohorts enrolled in the program today. The cohort is an important component in creating an open and supportive learning environment. You’ll learn more about how group work, classroom activities and the international trip can bring your fellow students together. By creating those closer bonds, you’ll build each other up and help each other out in ways that you might have never expected.

As you’ll see during the Test Drive, the learning and deeper interactions among cohort members continues outside of the classroom. During lunch, breaks and after-class happy hours, the cohort continues to help each other navigate their own educational journey. Your richer education is important – but, so is applying that experience to your home and work life. Through these more social interactions, you’ll uncover just how your cohort members can help you think differently and possibly solve your own personal challenges.”

I hope to meet you during the Stetson EMBA Test Drive!

Climbing Mount Everest: A Simulating Experience

On Friday September 22nd, Cohort 15 participated in a number of stations, one of which focused on leadership and teamwork. This particular station involved groups of five completing a web-based simulation of a team climbing Mount Everest! Our graduate assistants Jenny and Lauren share their and their teammates’ experiences of working together in an attempt to reach the summit.

Last weekend we had the pleasure of spending roughly two hours with a few of our members from Cohort 15 in a simulation that focused on problem-solving and decision-making challenges. Each person in the group was assigned an individual position (either: leader, marathoner, environmentalist, physician, or photographer). However, they had one group goal in mind: make it up the summit of Mount Everest together. The group faced obstacles along the way that forced them to make decisions as a team in a way that would not only benefit an individual, but would also benefit the group as a whole and thus increase their chances of making it to the top together.

Jenny’s Group –

Jenny’s team took some time to explore the program together and read aloud the goals for the climb. It was quickly noted that individual goals would contrast with each other, and there were going to have to be decisions made along the climb in the interest of the group and not the individual. With each stage, the group discussed pros and cons, always only proceeding with everyone in agreement.

Nicole, Sophia, Abdoul, Kristie, and Jenny (GA) during their teamwork task of progressing to the summit of Mount Everest.

There were sacrifices made for the group, which all members were more than willing to make. Individual goals and points were forgotten, and the overall climb and health of each member quickly became the main concern. The interesting aspect of a struggle with oxygen was that everyone had pieces of information with regards to calculations, but it was only by putting the information together that the answer could actually be found.  Though the team did not make it to the summit – as two individuals had to be rescued – it was considered an overall success for coming so far and working so well as a team.

Discussion/Feedback –

Jenny enjoyed the time to bond with the group and work together to reach their goals, and liked how team members were becoming more and more concerned for each other’s health as time went on, even though it was just a simulation. Abdoul said that though he felt exhausted after the experience, he felt that with a lack of information, mistakes were inevitable, but that it was a good lesson that making mistakes is a big part of leadership and teamwork. Sophia felt that the team became more confident in each other and were going with gut feelings, which is also a big part of teamwork and leadership. Kristie very much enjoyed that the efforts and concerns for the group as a whole took preference over individual goals. She also appreciated that though there was an assigned leader, everyone had equal input into the decisions that were made. Nicole noted that the survey during the simulation asked questions regarding to disagreements and contrasting opinions during discussions, but she found that in each decision we made, we were all unanimous and united as a group.

Abdoul, Jenny (graduate assistant), Nicole, Kristie, and Sophia, after an (almost) successful journey up the mountain!

Lauren’s Group

On day four, Lauren’s group had successfully made it to camp three. However, they were all starting to have critical health conditions both physically and mentally, with some team members also having frostbite and breathing issues. They were faced with the decision of whether to remain at camp three and let everyone rest for the day or move forward to camp four before resting, which was recommended by experts as well as earned them more ‘team points.’ Lauren’s group decided to try and make it to camp four despite everyone being in critical health conditions. Unfortunately, this was not the best choice for them, and both their photographer and physician had to be rescued and brought back to base camp. The next day, the three remaining members made the trudge up the summit, but unfortunately two members ran out of oxygen and had to be rescued and returned to base camp. Because of this, the leader was the only one to make it to the top of the summit successfully.

Discussion/Feedback –

After the stimulation, everyone in Lauren’s group agreed that they had worked really well together despite not making to the top of the summit together. Everyone in her group had decided to disclose any health related issues they had, which they could have kept to themselves. The group felt that this benefited them as they were all aware of each other’s strengths and weaknesses.

One of the students in Lauren’s group described this experience in her own words: “This stimulation was a lot like life: it throws random obstacles at you and you just have to learn and adapt to the curve balls.” The group also agreed that again, like life, it is important to take risks, but it is also important to be conservative sometimes. They took a risk going to camp four to earn more team points, but perhaps they should have been a little more conservative with this decision considering the critical condition of all the team members. Everyone in Lauren’s group had a blast doing this stimulation! They all agreed that it was a great way to get to know their cohort members more through a team building process which took them out of their comfort zone and forced them to make decisions as a group rather than individually.

 

 

 

 

The Newest Cohort in Celebration

On August 18th, Cohort 14 welcomed Cohort 15 to Stetson’s Executive MBA Program. Adam Swiatek from Cohort 14 shares some great highlights from Orientation weekend. Our new students are eager and enthusiastic to begin classes and we are excited to have them!

Each year, the Stetson EMBA admits a tight-knit group of students to the program. The group takes classes together, travels abroad, creates group projects and socializes together. Through the structure and the experience that the EMBA provides, students are able to take relationships to the next level – creating bonds that are unparalleled and unmatched.

Since the program is selective, there is extra special attention given to each student and the relationships that form as a result of the program. Cohort 14 (affectionately called the “Legion”) welcomed Cohort 15 last weekend. These are the new eager students who will be sharing the Center at Celebration with the “Legion” – and more importantly, the snack room! They are the next generation and the next wave of EMBA learners coming through the program prepared to receive a transformational experience.

Cohort 14 paved the way for strong relationships and close bonds. Over this past summer, those relationships were strengthened as the cohort traveled to Hong Kong and Bangkok as part of their International Field Experience course. Through in the moment scenarios, that could only come up when traveling, the cohort bonded and learned more about each other. They were already close – but, the trip experience really solidified the deal.

When they returned back to the Center, they were excited to keep the memories of their time together going with the new wall décor in Celebration featuring their travels and experiences of our Cohort 14 students on the walls for all to enjoy!

Cohort 15 was welcomed to the EMBA program by Cohort 14 students with open arms. Returning students could not wait to meet the new students for breakfast. And, the meeting of new friends continued at lunch at Happy Hour after class. Returning students interspersed with new students during meals – as they told the tales and shared their personal experiences of the journey the next 18 months ahead.

Following the first weekend of class, some Cohort 15 students already started using the study rooms and taking advantage of the resources that Stetson provides. This won’t be the only opportunity that they have to use the study rooms. There will be 18 more months of coursework and small group work ahead. While some of it will be relatively easy, some of it will really take the mental power and support of the whole cohort. They will discover their strengths – some strengths that they might not even know they had – and band together to make the educational experience truly amazing.

Cohort 14 undoubtedly will continue to be great mentors and supporters of our new executive students as they learn to balance professional and personal priorities with being a student in a progressive master’s program. As these two cohorts collaborate, naturally skills will be transferred and networks will be broadened heightening each individual’s experience.  Later this fall, Alumni will be added to the mix with our Tailgate Mixer at the Stetson vs. Brown football game in DeLand and then in the spring at our annual Alumni event. Pairing emerging leaders in Central Florida has been a highlight for all involved.

Stetson University – EMBA Family Day

Judy Ashbrook & Kelsey, daughter
Judy Ashbrook & Kelsey, daughter

Completing an Executive MBA program is not easy, but it’s an amazing opportunity to enhance your business acumen, develop your leadership skills, network with professionals outside of your industry, and prepare for future career opportunities. Sharing the EMBA experience with a significant other along with a network of professional and personal friends, provides the balance and support required to survive the demanding months ahead.

Pablo Chavez & Kristen, spouse
Pablo Chavez & Kristen, spouse

The program is a collaborative effort both inside and outside the classroom environment; therefore, students thrive with the support of all the people in their everyday life. Stetson University’s EMBA students are encouraged to share their experience with family and friends and involve them in the rewarding and impactful process.  Often these support systems notice the professional and personal transformation most and can participate in positive ways that influence development.

 

The Stetson University Executive Master of  Business Administration program created “Family Day” to acknowledge the commitment that both students and supporters alike have contributed to this life-changing experience.

CSoon

   2nd Annual Family Day

       Save the date – DECEMBER 07, 2013

Preparing for the International Trip

Mekong Delta - Vietnam
Mekong Delta – Vietnam

By Dr. Jon Carrick

The world has become highly globalized and we now must interact with companies from all over the world. Throughout the past term, we have been studying how to interact and conduct business with other countries and cultures. It is beneficial to study these things in the classroom, but there is no substitute for experiencing it first-hand. This is why I am so excited about our EMBA trip to Vietnam and Singapore.

We will get to experience two of the most dynamic economies in the world. Singapore rose from the ashes of conflict in the 1950’s to become one of the strongest economies in the world; it was literally one of the poorest countries in the world and it is now among the richest. The Singaporean economy has grown at an average of 8% p.a. since the 1960’s, and its impressive growth continues.

Vietnam has also recently experienced great growth, but is still a developing country. It will be an interesting contrast to see countries in vastly different stages of economic growth. It will also be interesting to be welcome in a country that, less than 40 years ago, we were at war with. If you had told people 30 years ago that Vietnam would be an important trading partner with the U.S., people would have thought that you were crazy. But here we are getting ready to visit an open and friendly Vietnam.

Between the two countries, we have nine great business visits planned. These visits are to an array of small and large organizations and will really bring to life what we have been learning in the classroom. Stay tuned, as the students and I will blog about each of our visits and our other experiences in Vietnam and Singapore.

Cohort 10 Prepares For International Residency

Ho Chi Minh CityWith just 7 weeks to go before they leave for Vietnam and Singapore, Cohort 10 are beginning to prepare for their 10-day international experience.

Today in a Skype call with our International Study Programs program manager, Michaela Vokounova, the students got a first glimpse at their full itinerary and the events that will dominate their trip. There is so much to see in the 10 days away, that the itinerary is filled with cultural events, sightseeing and business consultations – this will be an immersive experience, which allows the students to appreciate the differences of doing business in both countries, and deepens their understanding of different cultures, people and perspectives, to reinforce the importance of a global mindset.

The trip will consist of visits to 8 different small and large businesses in a range of industries, daily cultural events – including a boat cruise on the Mekong Delta and day at Sentosa Island – and a philanthropic activity helping disadvantaged people in Ho Chi Minh City.

Singapore skyline at nightMekong Delta - Vietnam

We are very excited about what promises to be an amazing residency!!

Keep an eye out for future updates and watch Facebook and our blog for stories of our travels when we leave in 7 weeks.

Executive MBA Cohort 9 Visits Deland Campus

Cohort 9 creates memories in Deland – Next visit will reward their MBA accomplishments at Graduation, May 2013

Stetson University’s Executive MBA class of 2013 visited the Deland campus, a ritual that occurs at least once during their 19-month graduate program.  This year, cohort 9 had the opportunity to collaborate with the Roland George Investment students, enjoy a conversation with Provost Paul during a catered lunch in the Carlton Union, and further their graduate studies by interacting with 3 faculty members in the fields of Finance, Integrated Business Strategy, Entrepreneurship and Strategy.

Coincidentally, the Deland City holiday parade was in full swing, so as the Executive MBA students toured the beautiful campus, the sights and sounds of holiday music, laughter, and joy filled the air.  Crystal Koepke, Walt Disney World, manager shared “this experience was one of the highlights of my graduate experience.  Being able to participate in strategic discussions, seeing how investment decisions are made by the Roland George students, and seeing Stetson University’s Main Campus gives me a greater appreciation for what I’m about to accomplish – my MBA”.

The Roland George Institute Program experience was dynamic, said Wendy Lowe, Assistant Director.  The Director, Dr. Ma and his undergraduate students, prepared student research on 3 global companies that was presented to the Executive MBA students and Board of Trustees.  This information was evaluated and a final determination of the viability of the students’ recommendation to purchase shares based on their findings was made.  The Executive MBA students were extremely impressed with the high quality of the research conducted, the apparent confidence and ability of these undergraduates to field and address questions from executive level students and finally the conclusive process that is conducted in the Roland George Investments Program.  David LaRocque, Senior IT analyst at Genworth Financial, enjoyed returning to his Alma Mater.  David shared, “I had a great sense of nostalgia and pride returning to campus as a graduate student with my Cohort.  I look forward to returning to Deland in May to graduate with my Cohort”.  David will officially become a “Double Hatter”, meaning he will have both his undergraduate and graduate degrees from Stetson University.

Provost Paul shared numerous opportunities to stay connected to Stetson University upon graduation in May 2013 including career services, participating in additional course/class offerings, attending alumni events, enjoying football tailgating and games, and by continuing to share their “Stetson story” with others.  Students were encouraged to continually challenge themselves to learn, guide, and engage in the community to be “Lifelong Learners”.  By engaging in such activities, continued professional and personal growth will occur and have a profound impact.

Stetson students and alumni invited to help feed the children

Children in other parts of the world could get a nutritious meal because of the time or money you donate. Photo courtesy of Feeding Children Everywhere

Alumni and students of the Stetson University Executive MBA, Stetson Executive Passport and Stetson University MBA programs who would like to give back to their community this holiday season now have the perfect opportunity.

On Saturday, Dec. 3, at 4:30 p.m., alumni, students and their friends and families are invited to Stetson’s Center at Celebration to package 10,000 meals for children in need all over the world.

“A few of us have been working with Wendy Lowe to try and extend our desire to stay connected with like-minded professionals,” said Kelly Glassburn, a Cohort 7 graduate. “We decided it would be best to rally the alumni as a group to participate in existing philanthropic efforts that make their way to Stetson.”

“This will be a great opportunity to reconnect with your cohort and give back simultaneously,” said Wendy Lowe, program coordinator for Stetson Executive MBA. “Come spread holiday cheer while enjoying the after-class atmosphere that you likely remember from your days in the program!”

Stetson has partnered with the organization Feeding Children Everywhere to make a difference in thousands of hungry children’s lives. Volunteers will form assembly lines and hand-package nutritious meals, and Feeding Children Everywhere will add them to one of its outgoing containers and ship these meals to those in need.

The reception begins at 4:30, Dec. 3. After that, Stetson will run two shifts: 5 to 6 p.m. and 6 to 7 p.m. Over those two hours, Stetson’s volunteers will package food that will serve 10,000 children at a cost of only 25 cents each, make the cost for the food at this event $2,500.

“We’re asking for one hour of your time and a donation of $5 to $25,” said Lowe. “Five dollars feeds 20 children, and $25 feeds 100 children! I’m confident that your participation will significantly impact those in need.”

Donations can be submitted online (http://www.feedingchildreneverywhere.com/stetson/), by text (text stetsonisfce to 85944 to donate $10), and in person (by cash or check). Contributions are 100 percent tax deductible.

“We are looking for 150 volunteers to help package these meals,” said Lowe. “All ages will be able to partcipate.”

If you have questions or if you’d like to RSVP, call Lowe at 321-939-7603 or e-mail her at wlowe@stetson.edu.

Open House this weekend

In the same way that getting a sneak peek at the inside of a book can help you decide if you want to read it, a sample of the Stetson University Executive MBA program can help you decide if it’s right for you!

You can enjoy your own commitment-free sneak peek of the Executive MBA program this Saturday, Sept. 10, at the Open House. This session will provide the perfect opportunity to meet the program staff and alumni, interact with current and prospective students, and see the school’s facilities. You’ll even get to observe an actual class in session and enjoy a laid-back complimentary lunch with program staff, students, faculty and the program director.

Two Stetson Executive MBA Cohort 9 students attended the Open House this past spring, and it helped them make the decision to join the program.

“My experience at the Stetson Open House was very valuable, from familiarizing myself with the building to seeing an actual class in session,” said Cohort 9 student Brian Smith. “The most beneficial part was conversing with current students and seeing how their excitement and passion for further learning shined through. I’m a hands-on learner, so the clear explanation of the Stetson Difference was incredibly insightful, and I knew that Stetson was the right choice!”

Smith’s classmate Christina Boncela agreed. “I did extensive research around various MBA programs and had decided on and applied to the Stetson Professional Evening MBA program,” said Boncela. “After discussing my decision a little further with a friend who was a current Executive MBA student, I reluctantly agreed to attend the Open House just to make sure I had all my bases covered.

“It’s a good thing I did because I realized I had made a mistake,” Boncela continued. “After watching the current Executive MBA class interact with each other, it was clear the Stetson Executive MBA program would be right for me. I’m so glad I was able to attend the Open House and experience hands-on what it means to be a Stetson Executive MBA student. I know I made the right decision and I’m so excited to be part of this amazing program.”

The Open House will be held at the Celebration Center, Saturday, Sept. 10, 2011, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. To RSVP, call Wendy Lowe, Executive MBA program coordinator, at 321-939-7603 or e-mail her at wlowe@stetson.edu.

Open House Schedule:

10:00-10:15 Arrive, meet program staff and director

10:15-11:00 Introduction/overview

11:00-11:30 Executive MBA alumni perspectives, tour of campus; Q&A

11:30-12:00 Observe an actual class in session

12:00-1:00 Lunch with program staff, faculty, current students; additional Q&A

Seats are limited. Only two other Open House sessions are scheduled for 2011-2012:

  • November 19, 2011 at 10 a.m.
  • February 18, 2012 at 10 a.m.