Friday, July 15, 2011

WMU's undergraduate HR Management program is one of top 15 percent of AACSB schools certified by SHRM

WMU Human Resource students participated in an internal HR Games this past spring. From left are Abbee Miller and Ashley Heckman, first place team members, Dr. Dan Farrell, HR program director, Andrea Foster, Target representative, and Ashlee Elder and Nicole Drew, second place team members.
WMU’s undergraduate Human Resource Management program has the distinction of being one of the top 15 percent of AACSB accredited programs recognized by the Society of Human Resource Management for alignment to the SHRM curriculum standards.

“We try to stay on the cutting edge of HR curriculum as we continuously work to make the HR program the “Program of Choice” in the region,” says Dr. Dan Farrell, professor of management and human resource program coordinator. “The alignment signifies that the WMU curriculum lines up with established guides relative to topics, courses, business context and delivery methods.”

“Out of 487 AACSB schools, our program is in a group of only 74 schools that have had its HR major certified by SHRM,” says Farrell, “We are one of 4 of 14 schools in the state of Michigan that are SHRM certified.” In all, there were 165 programs that have obtained the certification. 

SHRM provides colleges and universities with resources for tracking HR curricula against common skills needed by employers filling professional human resource positions. SHRM developed a curriculum template based on extensive research analysis that is designed to set the agenda on what the educational requirements for a career in HR; raise the bar for HR degree content and delivery of HR degree content, and support HR as a profession, with specific educational requirements. The review period is effective for three calendar years.

SHRM’s focus on HR education is an important and critical component to securing the future success and recognition of the profession. The SHRM HR curriculum guides are based on extensive research analysis.

SHRM is the largest human resource management association in the world, with over 250,000 members. The WMU student chapter of the Society for Excellence in Human Resources has over 25 members and recently received a Superior Merit Award from SHRM for the fourth year in a row for an exceptional job in providing opportunities for growth and development of its student chapter members.

For more about SHRM and the HR Curriculum Guidebook visit: .

Thursday, July 7, 2011

WMU accountancy chapter receives Superior Status

Beta Alpha Psi Executive Board
The Western Michigan University Gamma Rho chapter of Beta Alpha Psi, an international honorary accountancy organization, has earned Superior Status for the 2010-11 year.

The organization encourages and provides recognition to scholastic and professional excellence in the business information field including the promotion of the study and practice of accounting, finance and information systems; providing opportunities for self-development, service and association among members and practicing professionals, and encouraging a sense of ethical, social and public responsibility. The WMU chapter has earned the Superior Status 28 of the last 33 years.

“This level of recognition reflects the Beta Alpha Psi, Gamma Rho chapter’s commitment to ensure educational and professional experiences that are relevant for a career in accounting,” says Mike Eubanks, student chapter president. “Our membership is committed to academic and professional growth while engaging in various service opportunities.”

“In order to achieve the Superior Status, we were required to complete at least 12 professional hours and 12 service hours per member,” says Jared Lindberg, reporter for the chapter. “We had an average active membership of 58 students over the year which translates into completing 696 hours for professional, of which we completed 988, and 696 hours for service, of which we completed 1761."

"Our members are hard-working, ambitious and very giving of themselves to others," says Dawn Mason, instructor of accountancy and advisor to the group. “I am proud to be associated with them. The chapter participated in service activities for organizations including Strides, Kalamazoo Gospel Mission, Veteran’s Hospital, Salvation Army, Business Bash, Habitat for Humanity and Relay for Life in addition to tutoring students."

The Gamma Rho Chapter will be co-hosting the regional meeting in Chicago for spring, 2012.

Assistance to small business in southwest Michigan expands

Finance and strategy specialists are available through the SBTDC 

Carolyn Rourke, along with eight other finance and strategy specialists, has joined the Michigan Small Business & Technology Development team to assist second stage small businesses in improving their financial management and access to capital. 

Second stage companies are those that have $1 million or more in annual revenues and have nine or more employees.  The specialists have extensive experience in accounting and banking and are focused on working with companies to further their success through sound financial management. 

 “I love working with small businesses,” said Rourke. “It has been the focus of my consulting business for over 10 years, with most of my experience in assisting with the financial aspect of the business.” The position at the MI-SBTDC allows Rourke to leverage her background, which will help rebuild Michigan and create jobs. With the ever-changing lending environment, Rourke, as well as the other specialists, are able to engage with clients to find the right lending solution for their company.

 “My favorite part about working for the Southwest region thus far is helping clients to grow their businesses,” says Rourke. While being on the job only a short time, she has already been able to assist 10 businesses by restructuring their debt to free up cash flow which will allow them to confidently take the next step in growing their business venture. Clients have come from a variety of places, including referrals from economic development agencies, commercial loan officers, other counselors, as well as directly from small business owners.

“The finance and strategy specialists are available to help companies ensure their financial records are accurate and ready for preparing loan packages for submissions to financial institutions, compare their financials to industry benchmarks to identify areas of improvement, use their financials as a tool to manage their business and develop “what-if” scenarios for financial impact on the business for new initiatives,” states Tamara Davis, Southwest Michigan SBTDC regional director.

The services provided through the MI-SBTDC, including those provided by Rourke, are underwritten by the Small Business Administration (SBA) and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) and are provided at no cost to small businesses. For more information on services offered MI-SBTDC, call (269) 387-6004 or visit

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

WMU sales and business marketing program noted as top program

Dr. Stephen Newell
Dr. Jim Eckert
WMU’s Haworth College of Business Sales and Business Marketing program has been noted as a Top University Sales Program for 2011 by the Sales Education Foundation.

Each year, the Sales Education Foundation selects top university sales programs with an overall vision and dedication to sales education that demonstrate a strong sales curriculum, university recognition and support, and the opportunity for experiential learning such as internships. 

“The leadership and commitment to the program is critical to its success,” says Dr. Kay Palan, dean, Haworth College of Business. The dedication and hard work on the part of both the students and faculty have made the program what it is.”

Dr. Stephen Newell and Dr. Jim Eckert, professor and associate professor of the program, spearhead the Sales and Business Marketing program. “The faculty and students who are part of the Sales & Business Marketing program are excited to be honored as one of the top sales programs in the country,” says Newell,. “We are constantly analyzing the program in order to make it better. Based on faculty, student and employer feedback, we have recently added another sales-focused class to the curriculum in order to help our students to be more prepared to succeed in their careers,” added Newell.

The faculty works closely with SBM alumni and professionals to ensure that the knowledge and skills of graduates match the needs of the industry," says Eckert. "We are very proud of the quality and the success of our SBM program as measured by the excellent placement rate of our job ready graduates and their professional accomplishments over time."

“The in-depth, interactive and real-life training I received as a student in the Sales and Business Marketing program in the Haworth College of Business allowed me to quickly adapt to an ever-changing sales environment,” says Nathan Falk, alumnus who is an account manager for Medtronic Inc. “It creates a passion for sales and providing solutions for customers. I owe much of my sales success to the techniques and processes I learned from the program.”

WMU’s Haworth College of Business was one of three schools in Michigan and 48 schools nationally meeting the requirements for educating students in the sales profession.

The Sales Education Foundation was established as a non-profit foundation in 2006, to promote the profession of sales through colleges and universities with verified sales education curriculums. The USEF works with a variety of industry professionals and academic trailblazers to establish and support effective university sales programs throughout the globe.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Stamper named associate dean for undergraduate programs

Dr. Christina Stamper, professor of management, has been named associate dean for undergraduate programs in the Haworth College of Business. The appointment is effective July 1, 2011.

In the newly-created position, Stamper will assume responsibility and oversight of all undergraduate programs, the Academic Advising Office, and the Career Center for the College. In addition, she will oversee assurance of learning activities in the College and be responsible for undergraduate enrollment management, including recruitment, retention and community college partnerships.

Stamper has been with the College for ten years.  She teaches both graduate and undergraduate courses in organizational behavior and human resource management and topical courses related to these disciplines. Her research interests include explaining relational factors between employees and their organizations, and how these factors impact both work attitudes and behaviors. Her work has been presented at regional, national and international conferences as well as published in numerous management journals, including the Journal of Organizational Behavior and Personnel Psychology.

Stamper was recently invited to be a research affiliate of the Institute of Inclusiveness and Diversity in Organizations at San Diego State University, an organization committed to conducting innovative research to enhance understanding of diversity and inclusion in organizations. She will also serve on the Diversity and Inclusion Theme Committee of the Academy of Management.

Stamper received a master’s and PhD from Michigan State University, and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. Prior to pursuing her PhD, she worked as a restaurant manager for the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company.