The MBA Hub
Today's post is another installment of our spotlight on Portland State MBA alumni.
I recently had a chance to connect with Sam Goeppinger (MBA/Finance, 2006). Currently, Sam is a Commercial Project Manager at Vestas, where he has worked since 2006.
Vestas is a wind turbine manufacturer based in Denmark, and their North American headquarters are located here in Portland's Pearl District.
Today's post is another installment in our series about current MBA students here at Portland State University. Today, we interviewed Andrea Bouma, a first-year MBA candidate in the full time MBA program.
Q: What brought you to Portland State's MBA program? What has surprised you the most about the program?
A: I came to the PSU program because of the focus on entrepreneurship and sustainability, as well as the urban Portland environment.
Once I arrived, I was most surprised by how close knit the cohorts are. I knew it was a small class size, but I did not really have a grasp on what that would feel like until I started classes. I think this type of environment really mimics the business situation well, where you have a small group of people that you need to work through challenges with. With such a small group, it is hard to hide in the corners, and everyone is obligated to participate and learn how to get along with each other. Which, I think, results in a really rewarding classroom and learning environment.
The small cohort model also encourages peer support. I feel like we all want each other to succeed and are willing to help each other out.
Ted Khoury (with E. Pleggenkuhle-Miles, D. Deeds, and L. Markoczy) coauthored an article titled “Exploring cognitive bias: Expert ratings of business schools” in the October issue of Management Decision.
This study aims to explore the objectivity in third-party ratings — and finds that the judgments of academicians and recruiters, concerning the quality of universities, have been biased by the prominence of a university’s sports teams, and that the bias introduced to these experts mediates the aggregated bias in the resultant rankings of MBA programs. The study also finds that experts may inflate rankings by up to two positions.
Ted also gave a presentation at the Strategic Management Society Annual Conference on September 30, 2013 in Atlanta, titled: "The role of experience and negotiation leverage on exclusivity in technology licensing agreements.” The paper was a nominee for the conference’s best paper award.
When I first started in this position, I knew that Portland State University was known for being the largest and most diverse university in the state of Oregon. With students from all 50 states and nearly 100 nations around the world, it is a recognition that should not be taken lightly. To uphold this value of diversity, and ensure a global mindset in the classroom, our Graduate Business Programs work hard to recruit bright minds from across the world.
For this reason, I had the unique opportunity to travel to China this November with the QS World MBA Tour. In the span of 9 days, I visited four cities with populations that had as little as 7 times — and up to 12 times — the population size of Portland, Oregon. These incredible metropolises included Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, and Guangzhou.
The Portland Business Journal hosted the annual Innovation in Sustainability Awards Luncheon at the Governor Hotel in downtown Portland on November 14.
The Innovation in Sustainability Awards highlight the most brilliant and innovative approaches to organizational sustainability in Oregon.
Award categories are: Energy, Water, Equity, Food, Transportation and Waste.
This year, Portland State University was proud to have four Alumni winners.
Teak Wall is the Sustainability Program Manager at New Seasons Market, and won in the category of Equity. Teak earned her Masters of Urban and Regional Planning from Portland State University in 2006.
Are you interested in applying to the Portland State MBA program for early admission?
If so, the early admission deadline is coming up on Sunday, December 1.
This year's application process features a couple of important changes:
I participated in the Nicaragua study abroad trip this summer. The course focused on micro-enterprise and, after spending a little over a week in Nicaragua, I can tell you that opportunities to make an impact on the lives of people in the country were plentiful.
Nicaragua is the second poorest country in the western hemisphere (Haiti is the poorest). Yet, despite the poverty, the people have a positive spirit and a strong sense of community and mutual support in that community.
Have you heard of the most innovative class at Portland State University yet?
It's being taught by Charla Mathwick, and it's called "Start Up Strategy." This course is presented in conjunction with the Launch In Nine Program, which guides interdisciplinary student teams through a structured nine-month-long process that emphasizes lean start-up thinking, connections to the local entrepreneurial community through mentoring, the granting of academic credit for work related to the E-Team project, and simplified access to funding.
Traditionally, MBA Candidates at Portland State University take a business strategy course during the semester prior to the semester that they begin the capstone experience. The capstone experience is designed to give students a chance to work on a real world business consulting project — for an existing organization in the region — before graduation.
This year, an alternative path has been offered to MBA students: the chance to pursue an entrepreneurial capstone (i.e., a capstone designed to evaluate, prototype, and validate a business concept).
Ecotrust is the most interesting Portland secret that I have found in a long time. On November 8th the student chapter of Net Impact organized a meet-and-greet with Nathan Kaddish, Director of Investment Strategy at Ecotrust. We enjoyed hearing a bit about Ecotrust, and what the organization has been up to lately.
Ecotrust is essentially a holding company comprised of 17 for-profit and non-profit subsidiaries. The organization was founded by Spencer Beebe in 1991. At the time, Beebe was working on conservation efforts in Central and South America.
He realized at some point that he should bring his forestry conservation passion and expertise to the northwest region of the United States, where the temperate rain forests were also in danger of being depleted and misused. And thus, Ecotrust was born.
Fall is my favorite time of year! Yes, the streets are filled with yellow, orange and red leaves and the holidays are right around the corner, but I love this time of year for another reason: it’s the beginning of the fall recruitment season!
Next week, I embark upon a 16-day whirlwind tour of India as part of the QS World MBA Tour.
During this trip, I look forward to meeting with prospective MBA applicants throughout India as they navigate the graduate school admissions process.
Traveling to six different cities, I'll be attending the MBA fairs with dozens of other schools from almost twenty different countries. At the fairs, prospective students will be able to meet with admissions counselors as they compare the ins an outs of each country, school and program.