March 8, 2016

Donde's Point: March 2016

Dean's Cube
The spring semester is in full swing at the College of Business Administration. It seems like every month we have bigger news to share than the month before. I recently visited our new building site at the corner of 14th and Vine to take a look at something particularly important to me – my new office space in what we lovingly refer to as the ‘Cube’ – the rectangular shaped centerpiece on the west side of the building. It’s exciting to see the steel ‘cube’ girder now taking shape. The skeletal reference points are appearing where the actual structure will stand just over a year from now. 

Meanwhile, back in our current home we have some incredible activities happening. Dennis Lanham, director of executive education, is preparing to launch two brand new executive certificate programs I highlight in a new video presentation at http://mediahub.unl.edu/media/5232. The programs are geared for working managers and professionals who want to develop new skills. The non-credit programs offered this spring include a Certificate in Finance and Accounting for Non-Financial Professionals from April 6-8. Dr. Emre Unlu explains the benefits of the program in this video at http://mediahub.unl.edu/5234. Another program for our Certificate in Sales Excellence will be held May 4-6. Custom programs tailored to your specific business are also available. Keep up to date with all our executive education programs by visiting our webpage at http://cba.unl.edu/academic-programs/executive-education#finance-accounting

Another major development was the recent approval of a new department at CBA by the Nebraska Board of Regents. We have had our sights set on bringing our supply chain management program and business analytics program to the forefront of our college for several years, and beginning next fall we are proud to announce the creation of the Department of Supply Chain Management and Analytics. I can’t stress enough how crucial these areas of business are to the growth of our college in terms of opening opportunities for students in the work place and for faculty research. We have already been running in this direction for some time now, but having the structure of a department in place to focus solely on supply chain management and business analytics will give greater visibility to this important discipline and allow us to grow in areas that are vital to staying competitive in today’s business environment.

We recently held our annual Women in Business Conference and this year’s event was particularly notable with keynote speaker Jan Fields, former president of McDonald’s USA, LLC, one of the most widely recognizable women in business leadership over the past 30 years. Fields is a strong advocate for people development and delivered that message of empowerment to both professionals and students in attendance. Sponsors for the conference included Nelnet, Union Bank & Trust, Ameritas, Talent Plus and the Lincoln Community Foundation.

We are also fast approaching Entrepreneuring Days. The two-day event will take place at the Nebraska Union on April 5-6. The event is a centerpiece for our Center for Entrepreneurship, bringing in students from disciplines across UNL, and also students from around the country to the home of the world’s oldest global business plan competition. Cash prizes totaling over $115,000 will be awarded but my favorite part of the event is to see the amazing entrepreneurial business ideas being generated by the young people here in Nebraska.

I hope many of you are able to attend these great events coming up at CBA or others like them throughout the year. I believe the enthusiasm our alumni and friends have for our college is being reflected in the work of our students, faculty and staff. I hope you will help us START SOMETHING here at CBA the next opportunity you have to meet us here at Nebraska.