The Magazine for Alumni and Friends of the UB School of Management

Start-Ups

BusinessWeek, Forbes, U.S. News rank School of Management

The School of Management's Professional MBA program debuted on BusinessWeek's ranking of the country's top part-time MBA programs. The UB School of Management was ranked No. 69 nationally and No. 8 in the Northeast. The biennial ranking of part-time programs began in 2007 and is based on three measures: student satisfaction (40 percent), academic quality (30 percent) and post-MBA outcomes (30 percent). Student satisfaction is based on surveys to part-time MBA students who have recently graduated or are nearing graduation. Academic quality is derived from equally weighted scores of six variables: average GMAT, average student work experience, the percentage of teachers who are tenured, average class size in core business classes, the number of business electives available to part-timers, and the percentage of students who ultimately complete the program. The third category, post-MBA outcomes, is based on the percentage of students who say their part-time MBA program was "completely" responsible for them achieving their success goals (advancing a career with a current employer, finding a new employer or changing careers entirely).

In Forbes magazine, the School of Management was again ranked as one of the best business schools in the world based on the "return on investment" it provides MBA graduates. The ranking of No. 48, up two spots from the last ranking in 2007, puts the school solidly in the top 10 percent of the more than 525 graduate business programs accredited by AACSB International. According to Forbes, the ranking shows which business schools offer the "best return on investment" by comparing the cost of attaining an MBA-tuition, plus foregone income-to salaries earned by MBA graduates upon graduation and five years after graduation. The results were based on a survey of 17,000 MBA graduates worldwide from the class of 2004.

The School of Management was ranked as one of the country's best undergraduate business programs in the 2010 edition of "America's Best Colleges" by U.S. News & World Report. The School of Management was tied for No. 57 out of 183 schools in the ranking, up from No. 78 last year and higher than any other business school in the State University of New York system.

School hosts distinguished author

Alsop

Alsop

The School of Management and UB's Office of Communications collaborated to bring distinguished author Ronald J. Alsop to campus in January. Alsop is a former reporter for The Wall Street Journal and author of several books, including The 18 Immutable Laws of Corporate Reputation: Creating, Protecting, and Repairing Your Most Valuable Asset and The Trophy Kids Grow Up: How the Millennial Generation Is Shaking Up the Workplace.

During his two-day visit, Alsop spoke to a variety of audiences, including School of Management staff, the UB Communicators Network, the Public Relations Society of America (Buffalo/Niagara Chapter), the School of Management Alumni Association, a Professional MBA class and a group of employers and representatives from the school's Career Resource Center.

One of Alsop's topics was the challenges that managers face as the first wave of the Millennial Generation (born between 1980 and 2001) enters the workplace. He also spoke to several audiences about the importance of an organization's reputation.

Ebsary leads development efforts

Ebsary

Ebsary

Stephen A. Ebsary Jr. joined the School of Management as senior director of development last August. Ebsary returned to the University at Buffalo after 12 years in financial services, including 10 years as a financial advisor with Citigroup Global Markets (Smith Barney).

In his previous roles at UB, Ebsary served as director of development for the School of Medicine and as director of planned giving for UB's central development office, where he initiated the university's first planned giving program.

As senior director of development, Ebsary is responsible for leading a comprehensive program of cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of major gift prospects and donors to ensure private support for the School of Management.

Marketing professors launch new research group

Jain

Jain

A new research group, directed by two School of Management professors, will provide thought leadership in issues relevant to success in marketing.

Arun Jain, Samuel P. Capen Professor of Marketing Research, and Ram Bezawada, assistant professor of marketing, are co-directors of the initiative, named the Research Group on Integrated Marketing (RIM).

Research by the group is under way, with a focus on using scientific methods to solve managerially related problems. RIM seeks to develop novel, sophisticated algorithms and techniques to successfully classify, estimate, predict, cluster and more accurately describe the purchasing behavior of customers.

RIM has received initial funding from the Premier Group, the largest wine and spirit sellers in Western New York, and the UB 2020 Interdisciplinary Research Development Fund (IRDF). The IRDF funding was secured in collaboration with Aidong Zhang, chair of UB's Department of Computer Science and Engineering.

Bezawada

Bezawada

Research by the group is under way, with a focus on using scientific methods to solve managerially related problems. RIM seeks to develop novel, sophisticated algorithms and techniques to successfully classify, estimate, predict, cluster and more accurately describe the purchasing behavior of customers.

RIM has received initial funding from the Premier Group, the largest wine and spirit sellers in Western New York, and the UB 2020 Interdisciplinary Research Development Fund (IRDF). The IRDF funding was secured in collaboration with Aidong Zhang, chair of UB's Department of Computer Science and Engineering.

"We are working with Dr. Zhang to extend methodology developed in data mining, used primarily in cancer/DNA research, for use in market segmentation, the key strategic tool for all marketing firms," Jain said.

The Premier Group has made a three-year commitment in funding, and RIM is one of six campus-wide projects to receive an IRDF grant, awarded twice a year on a competitive basis through UB's Office of the Vice President for Research, for the spring 2009 cycle.

"This is an example of how the best business school research not only advances the body of knowledge in a field, but also has direct practical use in the business world," said Arjang Assad, dean of the School of Management.

Accounting gifts announced

Panasci Winners

From left: David Hore '87, chair of the 1000˛ Campaign, Dean Arjang Assad, Michael Murray '75, MBA '85, Professor Susan Hamlen, chair of the Department of Accounting and Law, and Professor Alex Ampadu. (Photo: Nancy J. Parisi)

Two new gifts to the School of Management's Department of Accounting and Law were recently announced.

Michael Murray '75, MBA '85, managing partner of Ernst & Young's Buffalo office, and his wife, Catherine, have given $75,000 to name the Michael and Catherine Murray Mezzanine on the third floor of the Alfiero Center.

In addition, nine alumni from the School of Management and the UB Law School pledged nearly $100,000 to name a newly created space, the Ernst & Young Study Center, on the second floor of the Alfiero Center.

The alumni, Lisa Filomia-Aktas '84, MBA '85, George Brooks, JD '86, Steven Diamond, JD '88, Stephen Ferguson '84, Keith Feuz '93, James Frank '78, Gary Koster '84, John Martinkat '90 and Srikant Nagaraj, MBA '91, are all employees of Ernst & Young.

Both gifts were announced at the kick-off event for the School of Management's 10002 Campaign to support the Department of Accounting and Law. The campaign's goal is to encourage 1,000 donors to give $1,000 per year to the department's annual fund. Proceeds from the campaign will aid in student scholarships, competition activities and faculty research.

Health care panel draws spirited crowd

Cropp

Cropp

"U.S. Health Care: In Search of a Cure" was the topic of a panel discussion October 29 that drew more than 200 guests to UB's Center for the Arts. Co-sponsored by the School of Management and the Law School, the panel was the fifth event in the annual Gerald S. Lippes Speaker Series.

Monroe

Monroe

Serving as panelists were Michael W. Cropp, MD, president and CEO of Independent Health; Ann F. Monroe, president of the Community Health Foundation of Western and Central New York; and Nancy H. Nielsen, MD, PhD, senior associate dean for medical education and clinical professor in the UB School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, and immediate past president of the American Medical Association.

Nielsen

Nielsen

The panel was moderated by Annemarie Franczyk, who covered health care for Business First for nearly 20 years before joining the faculty of Buffalo State College in 2008. The formal discussion was followed by a spirited question-and-answer session with the audience.

The Gerald S. Lippes Speaker Series focuses on current issues and topics related to business and finance. The series is part of a larger effort to foster an integrated understanding of the worlds of business and law, and to encourage a collaborative dialogue between business and legal professionals. Funding for the series is provided through the generous support of Gerald S. Lippes.

Minority and Women Emerging Entrepreneurs Honored

Marie Battaglia

Marie Battaglia, "Protégé of the Year." (Photo: Clare O'Leary)

Marie Battaglia was named "Protégé of the Year" by the Allstate Minority and Women Emerging Entrepreneurs program, a joint venture by the School of Management's Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership (CEL) and the UB Center for Urban Studies.

Battaglia, president of Battaglia & Associates, Amherst, received a $1,500 prize for the honor. Battaglia's firm prepares grants for government agencies, foundations and corporations. Jane Baker, owner of Baker's Polish Pottery at the Blacksmith Shop, Collins Center, was awarded the second-place prize of $1,000. Additionally, Corrin Matthews, owner of WNY Hypnosis, Buffalo, was awarded the third-place prize, receiving $500.

The Allstate Foundation, a charitable organization funded by subsidiaries of Allstate Insurance Corporation, sponsored the program and presented the awards at a banquet on December 7. Twenty participants completed the program after entering as protégés last January.

"As a result of this program, these 20 graduates have sought to foster their economic independence, advance their families' future and strengthen the economic health of their community," said Allstate Foundation representative Kelly Costanza. "Knowing that these strong, intelligent men and women have enhanced their development by acquiring tactical business skills demonstrates the continued success of the UB/Allstate Foundation partnership," she added. "We congratulate these talented individuals and the University at Buffalo for their vision, commitment and the impact they have made to the world around them."

Each participant was assigned two mentors who are successful entrepreneurs from the local business community and who met regularly with their protégés to help them evaluate and improve their business plans. "Mentor of the Year" awards were given to Battaglia's mentors, David Berghash of Shield Mfg. and Madonna Spitler of CELOX Blood Clotting Products Corporation.

CEL graduate honored at White House reception

Lenny Johnson

Lenny Johnson is pictured with Vice President Joseph Biden and Buffalo businesswoman Sundra L. Ryce.

Buffalo business owner Lenny L. Johnson, who with a partner and $7,500 built a two-man residential plumbing business into a multimillion-dollar construction management enterprise, was named Region II Minority Small Business Person of the Year by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). The SBA's Region II comprises New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Johnson received the award at a White House reception in August during this year's National Minority Enterprise Development Week Conference in Washington, D.C.

A graduate of the Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership's Allstate Minority and Women Emerging Entrepreneurs Program in 2008 and its Core entrepreneurship program in 2009, Johnson is president of L&D Johnson Plumbing and Heating in Buffalo.

Johnson and Donald Johnson (no relation) started the business in 1999. Their company now employs 28 and had revenue of $4.6 million last year from residential work and major commercial projects for customers that include the Buffalo Public Schools, the UB School of Dental Medicine, several Veterans Affairs hospitals in Upstate New York and the Niagara Falls Air Force Base.

"I took this dream I had and I didn't just dream it, I lived it," Johnson says. The 43-year-old former Marine left a job as a master plumber with the Buffalo Board of Education to go into business. An invitation to the White House wasn't in the dream.

"When my partner and I started, we didn't know business. I was a plumber." Johnson credits the UB business programs with getting him to refocus on his business plans.