In an event brimming with emotion, friends and colleagues came together on Saturday night to celebrate the life of Isenberg’s David Lepak, who died suddenly on Thursday, December 7, at the age of 46. Lepak, the Berthiaume Endowed Chair of Business Leadership & Professor of Management, and the Management department chair, was a popular professor who had been part of the Isenberg family since 2016. Married and the father of 4 children, he was also active in the community, coaching youth soccer, and volunteering at his kids’ schools.
Professor Charles Manz's new book "Twisted Leadership" offers business leaders a new way to think about leadership and suggests how to avoid the "leadership disease" - the idea that leadership is something that resides in one person who influence lower-level workers.
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In February, 350 students, alumni, faculty, and staff attended the fourth annual Women of Isenberg conference, which brings together women from all career levels to talk about their unique experiences and challenges as women in business.
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This year's 4th annual Isenberg Business Leadership Awards, held at the Colonnade Hotel and Boston and attracting 330 members of the Isenberg community, honored Chuck and Karen Peters of New England Wire Products and Recent Alumni awardee Brian Tino, account executive at InVision.
“No matter where we go, no matter what we do, we carry the Isenberg brand with us,” Senior Class Speaker Stephanie Berenson ’16 told an audience of over 4000—graduating seniors, their families, and Isenberg faculty and staff—at Isenberg’s Senior Celebration at the Mullins Center on May 7. “We are part of each other. We are each other’s network, and one day, as graduates, we will be a resource for Isenberg students just as alumni have been for us,” emphasized the dual marketing/journalism major.
A team of five Isenberg undergraduates scored two first-place and one second-place finish in the International Business Ethics Case Competition, on April 20-22 in Cambridge. The team explored First Amendment and other issues involving free-speech versus abusive messaging on a social networking site.
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Isenberg is the highest ranking public undergraduate business school in the Northeast, according to Bloomberg Businessweek’s 2016 Undergraduate Business School Rankings. Climbing three places since the 2014 ranking, Isenberg now ranks 11th among public undergraduate business school programs in the United States. The new rankings clearly illustrate Isenberg’s growing national stature, with the school moving up 45 spots among private and public business schools since 2010.
The third annual Women of Isenberg Conference took place on February 28th in the UMass Amherst Campus Center. Put on by student organization Isenberg Women in Business, the event attracted 310 attendees and offered a full day of speakers, panel discussions, and networking
“People are critical resources for organizations. But compared with other 'assets,' people have opinions and emotions; they can walk out the door and never return. They can also withhold effort, be lazy or excel when they choose to. Yet, all companies need employees.” It is this dance between business and the people who fuel it that makes the field of Human Resource Management so intriguing to Prof. David Lepak, the internationally renowned scholar whom Isenberg has proposed for its Berthiaume Chair in Business Leadership at Isenberg.
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The campus-wide Innovation Challenge business plan competition's new seed pitch component is propelling student teams, through mentoring, workshops, and targeted financial seeding. “We introduced the new phase to elevate and accelerate the larger event’s already high level of competition," notes Isenberg professor William Wooldridge, executive director of Isenberg's Berthiaume Center for Entrepreneurship, which coordinates the Challenge.
An MBA faculty panel on gender challenges in the workplace and the sports industry recounted obstacles in mobility and biases in interpersonal relations. The panel also noted progress, including leveraging gender allies and advocates.
Thirty students in the Isenberg course, Ubuntu & Business in South Africa, visited Johannesburg, Pretoria, Cape Town, and Soweto during a three-week class trip to South Africa in May. The students explored business and cultural venues and participated in several community service projects during their stay.
Two days of Isenberg graduation events celebrated the achievements and grit of 1,230 graduating seniors, master’s, and Ph.D. recipients. Addresses by keynote speakers recounted students’ accomplishments at Isenberg and looked ahead to their promising careers and continued engagement with the school.
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Scores of Isenberg students were honored with substantial scholarship assistance at the annual Isenberg Scholarship Celebration, on April 21. The principal speakers—Vinnie Daboul ’87 and Marty Boyle ’15—praised Isenberg as an engine of opportunity and upward mobility. They urged alumni and students to support the school financially and through personal engagement.
Student-driven ideas will be the focus at HackUMass at UMass Amherst’s Integrative Learning Center on April 11-12. More than 600 participants, including 70 companies and students from across the region, will take part in the event, which is the Pioneer Valley’s largest hackathon and is hosted by the Isenberg-based Berthiaume Center for Entrepreneurship.
The second annual Women of Isenberg Conference took place on February 7. Coordinated by the student group Isenberg Women in Business, the day-long event attracted 210 members of the Isenberg community, including 42 alumnae, a dozen Isenberg faculty and staff members, and 150 students.
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