Amarillo native James Welch began his career with Yellow Transportation soon after earning an undergraduate degree from WT in 1976. He rose through the ranks to serve as president and chief executive officer at Yellow Transportation from 2000-2007. After 29 years with the company, Welch left to join Dynamex, Inc. as president and chief executive officer. Today Welch leads YRC Worldwide and its various operating companies. YRC Worldwide, a $5 billion transportation company, is a leading provider of LTL transportation services throughout North America. He has more than 35 years of being involved in the transportation and logistics industry. In addition to his work at YRC, Welch sits on the board of directors for SkyWest, Inc., a $4 billion regional airline based in St. George, Utah, and Erickson Air Crane, a $500 million manufacturer and operator of heavy lift helicopters based in Portland, Ore. He has attended the Executive Development Program at Yale University and is a regular attendee at the Center for Service Leadership at Arizona State University. WT College of Business students got an opportunity to learn from this nationally recognized business leader when Welch visited campus in the spring of 2013. James Welch will receive the 2014 Distinguished Alumni Award from West Texas A&M University on June 7, 2014 at the Phoenix Banquet.
The College of Business at West Texas A&M University is pleased to announce that its Bachelor of Business Administration degree program in computer information systems (CIS) has been granted accreditation by the Computing Accreditation Commission (CAC) of ABET, the most prominent accreditation body responsible for accrediting engineering, computing, applied science and engineering technology degree programs. The College of Business announcement is particularly unique in that this accreditation is one of only 30 programs in the world to be accredited by both ABET and the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).
“The accreditation is a culmination of years of careful program development according to international standards and a review process by ABET that took place during 2009 though 2012,” Dr. Amjad Abdullat, associate dean of undergraduate business programs and professor of CIS, said. “This is a significant accomplishment and an important milestone for our college. The College of Business at West Texas A&M University is committed to quality instruction, program assessment, and continuous improvement for all aspects of our programs, which is externally confirmed in CIS by earning program approval by one of the world’s most prestigious and rigorous accrediting agencies.”
WTAMU Enactus (formerly Students in Free Enterprise) placed in the top 20 at the Enactus USA National Exposition May 22-23 in Kansas City, Mo. The WTAMU team also was named one of the eight national finalist teams in the Campbell’s Let’s Can Hunger Project Partnership, a project focused on fighting community hunger.
Enactus projects focus on a triple bottom line—people, profits, and planet. Using the power of entrepreneurial action to empower people in need, Enactus teams work collaboratively to transform lives and build a better, more sustainable world. Throughout the 2012-2013 academic year, WTAMU Enactus projects focused on job skills training for single mothers, tutoring refugees, mentoring teenagers at the Youth Center of the High Plains, small business consulting, teaching entrepreneurship, hunger relief and encouraging youth to reach for their dreams through college and career training. Through helping others achieve their dreams, Enactus team members improve their own marketability by learning leadership, teamwork and project management skills. More than 50 national companies who specifically target Enactus students in their hiring process gave team members seeking internships or employment the opportunity to be recruited at the Career Fair at the USA National Exposition.
The 2013-2014 Enactus officers are Mary Dittfurth (management major from Amarillo), Brittany Smith (M.B.A. student from Lubbock), Dayren Tolliver (finance major from Alabama), Kristen Le (communications major from Vietnam), Rudy Cantu (management major from Wellington), Elizabeth Castillo (accounting major from Wheeler), Greg Moreno (accounting major from Wellington), and Justin Lawlis (CIS major from Amarillo). Faculty advisors are Jean Walker and Dr. Leigh Browning. The fall 2013 Enactus Leadership Conference is at the Disneyland Hotel in Anaheim, California and the spring 2014 Enactus United States National Exposition is April 1-3 at the Duke Energy Convention Center in Cincinnati, Ohio.
WTAMU Enactus meets in CC 221 from 12:20 to 1:00 p.m. every Tuesday during the academic year. Enactus is a student organization of the College of Business, but all majors of all classifications are invited to join
The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) is the world’s largest association devoted to human resource management. Representing more than 250,000 members in over 140 countries, the Society serves the needs of HR professionals and advances the interests of the HR profession. Founded in 1948, SHRM has more than 575 affiliated chapters within the United States and subsidiary offices in China, India and United Arab Emirates. The SHRM vision statement is to be a globally recognized authority whose voice is heard on the most pressing people management issues of the day – now and in the future.
SHRM at West Texas A&M University has been active for over a year, culminating in the end of the probationary period with the official charter ceremony held on November 1, 2013. The charter ceremony speakers welcoming the WT affiliate included Jody Holland with Cloud Interview and Nicole Shannon and Bradley Howard with Brown & Fortunato, P.C.
Dr. Meagan Brock, assistant professor of management, is the faculty advisor for the West Texas A&M University chapter of SHRM and student officers are Victoria Jones, Paige Reynolds, Magaly Driver, and Jordan Fabrizio.
Once again, the College of Business is sponsoring a European Study Abroad trip. The destination this time is Austria, Germany and Switzerland. The trip will be led by Dr. Neil Meredith and Ms. Karen Cooley and is scheduled during May intersession 2014. It will focus on a comparison of the United States and European Union economic systems. In addition to the academic aspect, ample time will be spent experiencing the unique cultures of these European countries. Participants will initially fly to Frankfurt, Germany where they will visit Romerplatz City Square, the European Central Bank Headquarters and the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. From there, they will head to Zurich, Switzerland, and among other things, visit Lenin’s Swiss home with a focus on the comparison of socialism, communism and Marxism. Upon leaving Switzerland, the group will proceed to Munich, Germany by way of the historic Neuschwanstein Castle, the inspiration for Walt Disney’s fairy tale castle. While in Munich, they will tour Marienplatz square, the Bavarian Parliament and BMW Welt and Museum. They will also attend a lecture at Ludwig Maximilian University on free trade. The trip will culminate in Austria with visits to the musical city of Salzburg, birthplace of Mozart and Vienna for a lecture at the University of Vienna on public choice in the E.U. Students will earn three hours credit for an advanced economics course – Comparative Economic Systems.
The winners of the 2013 College of Business faculty and staff awards are as follows:
Teaching Excellence Award to Dr. Jonathan Shaffer, assistant professor and Pickens Professor of Management
Research Excellence Award to Dr. Huabing Wang, associate professor finance and Edwards Professor of Banking
Service Excellence Award to Dr. Jeffry Babb, assistant professor of CIS and Terry Professor of Business
Staff Service Excellence Award to Shawna Simmons, administrative assistant in the Dean’s Office
The students selected as 2013 Outstanding COB Graduates are:
Accounting B.B.A. – Carrie Waldrip
Economics B.B.A. – John Baker
Finance B.B.A. – Sophie McBride
CIS B.B.A. – Sarah Anne Boorman
Management B.B.A. – Eric Freelen
Marketing B.B.A. – Brittany Stewart
General Business B.B.A. – Dee Leatherman
Outstanding Undergraduate Student – Emilee McKnight
Outstanding Graduate Student – Angelica Pallares
Congratulations to the faculty, staff, and student award winners.
Through the Student-Managed Investment Fund (SMIF), finance majors explore applied investing. Students manage a portfolio of funds and decide on stocks to purchase and sell with a goal of long-term growth. They learn investment fundamentals, valuation techniques, and technical analysis. All finance majors explore one or more investment opportunities, which are forwarded to the student portfolio managers for consideration. Portfolio managers attempt to meet the dual objectives of increasing the long-run value of the portfolio combined with the short-run objective of providing student scholarships. Since 2001, the program has awarded over $100,000 in scholarship funds to business students. The student portfolio has grown from an initial value of $100,000 to the current value of over $700,000.
The 2013 Student Portfolio Managers are Ethan Douglass, Manuel Garcia, Ashley Peterson, and Kolten Wilder. The new stock purchases for 2013 includes Ford (F), Wendy’s (WEN), Altera (ALTR), EMC (EMC), Expeditors International (EXPD), and CA (CA).
The students selected to serve as the 2014 Student Portfolio Managers are Mohammad Alazzam, Gustavo Barraza, Wesley Bentley, William Glover, Leif Knippers, Karen Mendoza, Viridiana Pereda, Max Pierce, Brandy Roberts, Robert Snider, Taylor Tice, Linh Trieu, and Reid Winger.
WT Computer Information Systems student, Randi Ferdian, took 3rd place honors at the Texas A&M University System 11th Annual Pathways Student Research Symposium in Kingsville, TX on November 8th, 2013. Randi’s research, “Physical Therapy Using a Motion Sensitive Camera” was funded in part by West Texas A&M University’s President’s Undergraduate Research Program in the summer of 2013. Randi’s work concerns using Microsoft’s Kinect multi-sensor device, typically used for video games and entertainment, do track human motions for purposes of physical therapy. Randi worked closely with his faculty mentor, Dr. Jeffry Babb, and his industry/practitioner mentor, Patrick Pitre (PT, NTC, CONT), to develop a software system which leverages inexpensive off-the-shelf commodity hardware. Randi is a senior at WT and is originally from Jakarta, Indonesia. He is a member of the Tech Club and Economics Club.
Law and economics is one of the fastest-growing areas of applied microeconomics. Law schools are devoting increasing attention to understanding the economic analysis of law and the new concentration provides solid preparation. Historically, over 35% of economics majors earning an undergraduate degree at West Texas A&M University pursue professional careers in law. Recent economics graduates have earned law degrees from Texas Tech University, University of Texas, University of Colorado, and University of Wyoming. The new concentration will better prepare students for professional studies in legal fields and focus on transactional law issues. Undergraduate programs in Law & Economics are in many European business schools but are relatively unique in the United States. The core courses for the program in Law and Economics at West Texas A&M University draw upon the expertise of faculty from economics, business law, and business communications.
The College of Business is pleased to announce the following new participating faculty appointments:
Dr. Leigh Browning, professor of business communication and marketing. Dr. Browning earned B.S. and M.S. degrees at Kansas State before earning a Ph.D. from the University of Southern Mississippi. Dr. Browning’s primary teaching areas include business communication, emerging media law, principles of marketing, and emerging media in advertising. Her research includes publications in Journal of Instructional Pedagogies, Academy of Marketing Studies Journal, Texas Speech Communication Journal, and Journal of Higher Education Theory and Practice. Dr. Browning brings real world media experience to the classroom as she has worked in commercial radio as a News Director and Morning Show host, a television anchor and freelance reporter for CNN and Phillips Recordings Studios in Tokyo, Japan, and served on the production staff of television shows, commercials, documentaries and major motion pictures.
Dr. Sharon Burnett, associate professor of accounting. Dr. Burnett earned B.S. and M.B.A. degrees at the University of Arkansas, Little Rock and a Ph.D. from Oklahoma State University. Her primary teaching and research areas include accounting information systems, cost accounting, and managerial accounting. Dr. Burnett’s research includes publications in Journal of Accountancy, CPA Journal, Southwestern Economic Review, and Oil, Gas & Energy Quarterly. Dr. Burnett returned to West Texas A&M University in 2013 after previously serving the institution during the years 2000-2007.
David Clark, instructor of accounting and healthcare management. Mr. Clark received a B.B.A. in Accounting, Summa Cum Laude, from WT in 1986, and a M.P.A. in Accounting & Finance from West Texas A&M University in 2013. Mr. Clark has held CFO and CEO positions in the health care industry, as well as being the managing partner of a regional health care consulting group. He is a Certified Public Accountant with audit and tax experience specializing in health care entities. His research includes the article “Utilizing Self-Insurance to Accumulate and Protect Cash Reserves” with Dr. Darlene Pulliam published in Today’s CPA. He teaches financial accounting, managerial accounting, personal financial planning, healthcare management, and healthcare finance.
Dr. Robin Clark, clinical instructor of business law. Dr. Clark received a B.B.A. in General Business from WT in 1983, and a J.D. with honors from The University of Texas in 1990. She was admitted to the State Bar of Texas in 1990. Since graduating from law school, Dr. Clark has practiced transactional law in Amarillo. Dr. Clark has over 20 years of experience in transactional law, which includes service as a partner with Gibson, Oschner & Adkins, LLP and in house counsel for Herring Bank. Her teaching areas include business law, employment law, and conflict resolution & negotiation. Dr. Clark’s research interests include applied issues in employment law, business law, and issues related to animal law.
Dr. Dmitriy Nesterkin, assistant professor of computer information systems. Dr. Nesterkin received B.B.A. and M.S. degrees in management information systems from the University of Memphis before completing his doctorate degree in computer information systems at the University of Arkansas. Dr. Nesterkin’s primary teaching and research areas include management information systems, web-based software development, mobile software development, and project management. His work includes publications in Journal of Management, Journal of Computer Information Systems, and Journal of Organizational Change Management.
Dr. Gary Sanders, clinical instructor of business law. Dr. Sanders earned a B.B.A. in accounting from WT and was a C.P.A. before earning a J.D. from Texas Tech University. He was responsible for implementing a Sarbanes-Oxley compliance program for a NYSE-listed company and was also in charge of its corporate secretary functions. He has represented numerous clients in the formation of corporations, partnerships, limited liability companies, mergers, acquisitions, business combinations, dissolutions and other business transactions. Dr. Sanders has represented clients in public offerings and private placements of over $1 billion in debt and equity instruments. His current research includes the exploration into the evolution of corporate governance practices by public companies following the implementation of Sarbanes-Oxley and the Dodd-Frank Act. The teaching areas for Dr. Sanders include business ethics, ethics in accounting, business law, and accounting law.
Dr. Viraj Varma, visiting assistant professor of management. Dr. Varma received a M.S. in Human Resource Management and Ph.D. in Management from Auburn University. Prior to that, he obtained an MBA from Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur and a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Jadavpur University, India. He worked in the industry for over nine years and was involved in power plant operations, project management, software development, and change management consulting. Dr. Varma is a certified Senior Professional in Human Resources and an active member of the Academy of Management, Southern Management Association, and Society for Human Resource Management. His primary teaching and research areas include principles of management, human resource management, and strategic management. Dr. Varma’s research has appeared in the Journal of Professional Issues in Engineering & Practice.
Mr. Kyle Williams, visiting instructor of economics. Mr. Williams joined the College of Business faculty in 2013. He received a B.S. in Management from the University of Illinois at Chicago in 2009 and M.S. in Finance and Economics from West Texas A&M University in 2013. Before joining the COB faculty, Mr. Williams worked various positions in real estate, accounting, information technology, and management. Mr. Williams is teaching principles of macroeconomics and money & banking for the 2013-2014 academic year. He plans on pursuing a Ph.D. in economics in the fall of 2014.