Thursday, February 25, 2016

Alpha Kappa Psi Chapter wins awards at national Principled Business Leadership Institute

In February 58 members of the UT COBI Gamma Eta Chapter of Alpha Kappa Psi, the Professional Business Fraternity, went to Chicago, IL to attend the Principled Business Leadership Institute. Our chapter won two awards, for Most Attendance and Most Spirited Chapter. Two groups competed in the Case Competition.

The conference was two days full of keynote speakers and workshops, where attendees could learn more about mentorship, engaging the energy of conflicts, critical thinking, maintaining a meaningful network, and so much more. Chapter members also met with other chapters of Alpha Kappa Psi to exchange ideas to better our chapters, and developed a deeper appreciation for our Brotherhood.

Additionally, one member, Coral Petersen, was  recognized by Mark S. Babbitt, CEO and Founder of YouTern, for her outstanding presence on social media.

Dr. Paul Hong named Fulbright Scholar, will teach, conduct research in India

Dr. Paul Hong, Department Information Operations and Technology Management in The University of Toledo College of Business and Innovation, has been named a recipient of the J. William Fulbright Scholarship award to India.

“I was very delighted and very fortunate to be accepted for this program, which leads with a global perspective. I’m very grateful for COBI’s strategic engagement in India and for what COBI has been doing, and COBI’s relationship with PSG Institute of Management and COBI’s reputation made the difference,” Dr. Hong said.

Dr. Paul Hong
“Based on previous international research network experiences I have considered possible options for Fulbright scholarship grants among seven different countries: Korea, China, Japan, Germany, UK, Canada, and India.  I finally chose India for three reasons:
- for the dynamic growth possibilities. With vast youth populations, innovative and entrepreneurial capabilities, and slow but steady infrastructure developments. I believe that the world will pay attention to India just as we did for China for the past 30 years. India would be a linkage nation between advanced economies (North America and EU) and Africa, Middle East and Latin America.
- for the rich research network relationships. I have visited India twice already. At Christ University  (Bangalore, India). I met the president and researchers years ago. This summer I will be visiting India again for a month before I start Fulbright projects next January.
-  and because India is a growing strategic partner with the US in multiple arenas: economic, political, educational, and cultural.  Increasing interactions between US and India bring tremendous opportunities for innovative growth.”

“My base will be Christ University at Bangalore,” Dr. Hong said, “and I will work with scholars at PSG Institute of Management (Coimbatore) and J Nehru University (New Delhi). I will be conducting research workshops for faculty members from these institutions who like to build research agenda with effective results in terms of quality publication and real world impacts. In 2017, two special journal issues will be organized on the topic of ‘entrepreneurial innovations in Base of Pyramid (BoP)’.  Two UT doctoral students, Nitya Singh and Blaine Stout, will also join in this team of international network of researchers.”

“In Christ University, there will be entrepreneurial leadership training sessions for graduate and undergraduate honor students.  This would be somewhat similar to what Dr. Clint Longenecker has already been doing with the Klar Leadership Academy at UT. I am grateful for this Fulbright scholarship grants which provide necessary fund, scholarly credibility to engage in reputable work and collaborative research network formation.”

“My research interest is on entrepreneurial innovation, which is crucial for developing growth engines for both Top of Pyramid (ToP; rich top tier 1-2 billion people) and Bottom of Pyramid (BoP; poor bottom 5-6 billion people),” Dr. Hong explained.  “With slow growth in almost all advanced nations including U.S., the ToP nations look for growth opportunities with nations with huge BoP segments. Morally, the firms--small and large--can no longer ignore poor people at the vast BoP.  Besides, there is serious concern for resource constraints. How can this earth provide quality life for a greater number of people without damaging environments and exhausting all available resources? Here is tremendous call for entrepreneurial innovation. What may bring vast people out of poverty is innovation efforts through entrepreneurship that align ToP resources (e.g., capital, experiences, skills, technology and infrastructure) and BoP capabilities (e.g., leadership commitment and human ingenuity to provide innovative solutions for huge BoP challenges). Different types of innovation use limited resources well with affordable prices for high quality and relevant products and services.  India, with its vast social capital and enormous human resources, would provide rich research opportunities.”

“My deep appreciation to Gary Insch (COBI dean); Anand Kunnathur (COBI associate dean);  PS Sundar (IOTM Department chair); TS Ragunathan (past Chair of IOTM depart and current UT-India Program Coordinator) for his many years of mentorship;  wonderful colleagues, COBI Ph. D. students for their support and encouragement, Dwight Haase (sociology dept) for sharing his Fulbright experiences, and UT President Sharon Garber for valuing research for institutional reputation. I owe much to them for whatever that can be accomplished through my research and service endeavors.”

The Fulbright Program aims to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries, and is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government. As a Fulbright scholar, Dr. Hong will have the opportunity to work collaboratively with international partners in educational, political, cultural, economic and scientific fields.

“The key is a global perspective,” Dr. Hong explained. “What I emphasize to students here is to go beyond a tri-state perspective; our students can work with companies from around the world because their technical and communication and relationship skills are very good. They are prepared to go anywhere. Through my work as a Fulbright Scholar, I can help our students engage with those students and companies, and this provides a great opportunity to further understand their growing market potential. Growth through global engagement, and a lot of businesses will benefit. This increasing strategic initiative will continue a lot of opportunity and will benefit students who work in the US.”

“Fulbright is very service minded,” he said, “and I view this as a service opportunity.”

COBI sales and marketing grad wins prestigious Ritz-Carlton Employee of the Year award

June will mark just two years since Julianne Kujawa graduated from COBI and started her career at The Ritz-Carlton, Cleveland as Corporate Catering Sales and Events Coordinator. But that hasn’t stopped her from already receiving one of that company’s highest honors, the Five Star Employee of the Year Award.

“The Five Star Employee of the Year Award is an award that is presented to a lady or gentlemen that demonstrates dedication and commitment to The Gold Standards and The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company through interaction with colleagues and guests,” Kujawa said.  “It represents going above and beyond normal duties and getting involved to create an enjoyable work environment while enlivening the service values each and every day.

“I first had to win a quarterly nomination which I did in June, Five Star Employee of Quarter 2, in order to be nominated for Five Star of the Year. Along with the recognition, I was presented with an award and a Five Star Trip. This trip includes two round trip airfare tickets, a five night stay at any Unites States Ritz-Carlton property and spending cash for the trip. I am EXTREMELY excited with the timing of the award: I am recently engaged to the most wonderful man, Tim Urbancic, who I met at the University of Akron and we will be using the trip to travel to Key Biscayne for our honeymoon this year in November.

“My position at The Ritz-Carlton, Cleveland is Corporate Catering Sales and Events Coordinator. I started on June 17, 2014. I have a large variety of responsibilities,” she explained. “Overall, I am responsible for turning and overseeing an event/meeting over from the sales phase to the event management phase.  This includes preparing sales-related documents throughout the sales process, such as proposals, contracts and cost estimates. I solicit prospective clients to maximize revenue, and participate in company initiatives such as Global Customer Appreciation Week to maintain, express gratitude and solicit current loyal clients. I am also the sales manager for any pop-up meetings or events that are 14 days out from the current day. I will personally handle the entire sales phase, plan the event/meeting through creating the banquet event order, setup the billing and service the meeting/event (being the point of contact day of). I am also involved in Employee Council to which I was selected with other members from various departments to represent the hotel on behalf of all employed at our hotel. We meet monthly to plan many ventures such as our Community Footprints, Welcome to Work Days and to discuss opportunities on ways we can create growth in employee engagement throughout the hotel. “

“I have many awesome parts of my job that I could go on and on about because I truly do believe I work for one of the best companies out there. The absolute best part of my job is the fact that I work for a company that genuinely appreciates their employees. At The Ritz-Carlton, we not only have a credo on what we promise to do for our consumers but we also have an employee promise with the first phrase being: ‘At the Ritz-Carlton, our ladies and gentlemen are our most important resource to our service commitment to our guests.’ We work hard for them and, in turn, they work hard for us. I go into work knowing I will always be taken care of and this is simply understood by our motto that we live out each and every day: ‘We are ladies and gentlemen, serving ladies and gentlemen.’  My job has Welcome to Work where my colleagues are welcomed by warm smiles and morning treats.  We also participate in a large amount of charity work throughout the year which includes the local Cleveland community and beyond.”  

“At COBI I was a double major: Professional Sales and Marketing. I selected these majors because I love the challenge of being able to not only sell someone on my passion for an idea, service or product, but to connect them with enough to have them feel the same enthusiasm as I do. I never knew exactly what I would do with my major other than I wanted to be successful and help out others along the way. UT not only made me see a clear path of where I was headed, this school truly turned my dream into a reality.”

“Words cannot express my love for this school and the first-hand experience that I have received at COBI. Looking back, I would not be where I am today without the education I received from The University of Toledo. Honestly, no one can pay me for saying this. COBI gave me the most important resource that no university or college could ever match:  professors and advisors who genuinely care about their students and their overall success. I never felt like just a student; I felt like I was part of a community that poured out support to provide the overall goal of not just graduating but succeeding past graduation. COBI provided me with real life experiences such as the recorded role playing of being the buyer, seller and learning coach as well as the job fair that allowed us to interact with corporations to ask questions and interview on the spot.”

“I had an internship with the Athletic Marketing Department. I enjoyed the internship because it allowed me to experience what I was working towards with my marketing degree. I was able to contribute towards the Varsity "T" Hall of Fame by soliciting for donations of silent auction items for the event.”

“My original choice was the University of Akron where I started as a marketing major and attended for 1 1/2 years. I mainly selected the school on the conditions that it had a business program and gave me the opportunity to experience living away from home, since I have lived in Sylvania my entire life. Although I loved the social life and the lifelong friends that I made there, it did not take me long to realize that the grass is not always greener on the other side. I knew transferring to UT was the best decision for me based on their national standings with their College of Business but specifically their sales program. Having a sales program that was recognized as the number one sales school in the nation made the decision easy and I knew I wanted to be part of that success. With the help of my wonderful dad, David Kujawa, I was able to enroll into the University of Toledo during winter break of 2010 for the 2011 spring semester.  Like every student enrolling into college, you are unsure of where your future will take you, and the unknown is a bit nerve-racking. UT gave not only reassurance of what success could come with hard work and dedication but also comfort in knowing they have 100% job placement within the sales school.”

“Lora Cramer was one of the most influential professors I had at COBI, very knowledgeable and provided relatable material. She made every lecture interesting and challenged us in class with presentation and open dialogue. Barb Robertson, although not a professor, was probably one of the best assets I had at COBI. Her guidance and willingness to go above and beyond for her students was incredible. She always made time to speak with me and never made me feel like my questions were unimportant. I am extremely grateful for her guidance and support throughout my time at UT.”

“Anyone considering studying at UT COBI will find it to be the BEST investment and well worth the work to graduate!” Kujawa said.

“I am a proud Rocket!”