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Consortium alum Ben Pitts on leaving Goldman Sachs to be an entreprene [#permalink]

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New post 11 Nov 2016, 09:00
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: Consortium alum Ben Pitts on leaving Goldman Sachs to be an entrepreneur
Consortium alumnus Ben Pitts (University of Virginia, 2009) was a successful wealth advisor to high-net-worth individuals, working for a Consortium corporate partner and “making more money than I’d ever dreamed I could.” But nearly five years ago, after advising so many hard-working, fulfilled entrepreneurs, he finally succumbed to the urge to become one himself.

In a LinkedIn post about his experience, Ben described the passion, purpose and principles that seemingly drove so many of his clients. He realized money didn’t motivate these successful entrepreneurs. Their drive to solve problems did — and the money was a happy result of their efforts.

Ben tells how one entrepreneur in particular “pushed me over the edge,” persuading him that he had to take the plunge and scratch the entrepreneurial itch he could no longer resist. Five days after that meeting, he gave notice at Goldman, Sachs & Co. In his post, he is careful to note that his aim was not to create “advice for some employees to quit their jobs.”

“But Goldman Sachs needs a great employee with no distractions,” Ben writes. “I firmly believe the firm is better off now that I’m living my dream and I appreciate the three years the firm gave me to prepare me for accomplishing that. I would not be where I am without those three years.”

And where is he? He’s now at Cypress Financial Planning. There, he’s led the development of myFinancialAnswers, built to help employers deliver a financial wellness program that “provide[s] a technology platform that delivers robust financial planning for all who need it.”

“What is most important is that we understand what matters most to us in our own lives and careers,” Ben wrote. “We need to make decisions that reflect the deepest sense of who we are, who we want to be, and how we can maximize our contribution to our families, communities, employers, and the world around us.”

Read more about Ben’s story on LinkedIn.

The post Consortium alum Ben Pitts on leaving Goldman Sachs to be an entrepreneur appeared first on The Consortium.
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Guest post: Writing the MBA essays in your application [#permalink]

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New post 30 Nov 2016, 09:00
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: Guest post: Writing the MBA essays in your application
Guest blogger Nkem Nwankwo is a 2015 Consortium and University of Michigan Ross School of Business alumnus. He is a product manager at Microsystems, a software company in the Chicago area. Nkem is also the author of After School: Is Getting an MBA Really Worth It? and the After School Blog.

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Nkem Nwankwo

Essays aren’t easy. Writing is easily one of the most painful activities I regularly participate in. Some days, I don’t even know how or where to start, especially if I’m given constraints. If you’re like me, you can understand my dread when I finally had to start writing my MBA essays for business school. There is light at the end of the tunnel, however. You just need a game plan.

We already talked about why you would actually want to go back to school. But after you have that figured out, how do you actually put it on paper? Business school competition is fierce. You have to make sure you put your best foot forward. A genuine, well-written response to the “why MBA?” question will always strengthen your application.

The key to answering this question lies in how specifically an MBA will get you from where you are to where you want to be. This sounds easy, but many applicants struggle to deconstruct this progression on paper while also sounding authentic. In the process of writing After School, I got the opportunity to ask a number of MBA grads about their application MBA essays.

The two most prominent types of applicant answers were what I called the “logical progression” and the “career switch.”

The logical progression usually involves a change of job title, while the prospective student’s industry, general function, and maybe even company stays the same. Many of my interviewees reported that they hit a ceiling in their current positions. The MBA served as a fast track to the next level.

The career switch, on the other hand, directly addresses how and why an MBA will fill the necessary gaps required to get a job in an industry you couldn’t have without it.

Let me give you some examples:

  • Logical progression: Robert, now a management consultant, had ample experience in change management as an analyst in the financial services industry. He really wanted to explore the management consulting side of things. His “why MBA?” focused on building his academic credentials and exposing himself to other companies.
  • Career switch: Liana worked in asset management, but she wrote about eventually starting her own dance studio. In a previous career, she was actually a member of two dance companies. With dance, she saw an opportunity to make an impact on the business side of things. The opportunity was there for her target market.
  • Logical progression: Everette worked in telecom as a consultant. He wrote about becoming a chief strategy officer for a large telecommunication company because he felt it was the practical answer to get him in. It was a believable story.
  • Career switch: Amara now does education consulting, but she discussed how her career in insurance gave her experience in managing finance and interpersonal relationships. After pointing out the flaws she saw in the educational system from a structural standpoint, her essay walked through how she would strategically make the change to education management after obtaining necessary skills from her MBA.
All four had different motivations for going back to school, but they all clearly deconstructed their career strategies for their respective applications. Before you begin your own MBA essays, make sure that you’ve adequately vetted whether an MBA even makes sense for you. The story you write should be your own. Application reviewers can tell when something doesn’t sound genuine.

Finally, don’t be afraid of feedback! Knock out some first drafts and have your trusted friends read and critique them. They may uncover gaps in your story you didn’t realize you had. Writing MBA essays is never the most fun activity, but you can reduce the pressure and periods of writer’s block by mapping out your plan ahead of time. After that, the pieces should start to fall into place.

You can reach Nkem at nkem.nwankwo@lifeafterschool.co. Find his book at his website.

Note: Photo above via Mike Mantin, Flickr, under Creative Commons license.

The post Guest post: Writing the MBA essays in your application appeared first on The Consortium.
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Student series: Adjusting to the rigors of business school [#permalink]

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New post 01 Dec 2016, 08:00
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: Student series: Adjusting to the rigors of business school
Scheduling phone calls with mom. Keeping the “glass balls” airborne and letting the “rubber balls” bounce. Saving plenty of money. And remembering to take time for yourself. These are some of the lessons learned about adjusting to the rigors of business school as the first half-year winds down for the five Consortium students we’re following as part of our occasional series.

We continue our series following these five Consortium students — from starting business school through the two-year process. In case you missed it, here’s a link to part one of the series, which ran about a month into the academic year. We’re tracking Alejandro Bolívar-Cervoni (Washington University in St. Louis); Elva Garza (Indiana University-Bloomington); Tite Jean-Pierre (University of Rochester); Tazia Middleton (University of California, Los Angeles); and Tobby Yi (Yale University).

Into today’s installment, we look at what surprised them about b-school and what they expected. How did they have to adjust as they got into the routine? And do they yet know what’s ahead for them this summer?

How has the first half-year of business school met your expectations? How has it defied your expectations?
Across the board, our students expected business school to be busy, rigorous and challenging. It’s possible they didn’t realize quite how busy, rigorous and challenging it would be. Tite recalled a conversation with a friend who had recently graduated from business school.

“She put it for me beautifully: ‘Business school is a juggling act. You are juggling multiple balls. Some are glass and some are rubber. You have to figure out which are which and adjust appropriately,'” Tite said. The glass balls can’t be dropped—period. The rubber balls? Well, they’ll bounce back if you can’t hang onto them right now.

Tobby and Alejandro shared their insight in terms of discipline. Alejandro rued the inability to spend time learning more about the St. Louis area—seeing the sites, experiencing the restaurants—but recognized the discipline to focus. Tobby noted the ability to get involved in an endless range of clubs, travel opportunities and more.

“The world is our oyster during business school,” he said. “But make sure you can handle it all. It’s an exceptional opportunity to find happiness, accomplishment, and connection that you may never would have expected.”

For Elva, she wasn’t surprised by the rigor of the work. She expected professors to push students hard. She didn’t expect them to be so nurturing. “Our professors truly have an open door policy and come on nights and weekends just to help us succeed,” she said. “Now that is love.”

What do you wish someone had told you about b-school before you started?
Here, Tobby also had interesting insight: There’s a difference between what you’re told and what you hear. “To be honest, I’ve heard it all,” he said. “But what I wish I listened to is to really reflect on who you are and what you want to do. Business school has so many avenues for expression and experience that you’ll sometimes get lost in the number of activities you can attend.”

Knowing who you are makes it possible to adjust your priorities, but it doesn’t mean you’re any less busy. Tite recalls many days leaving her house at 7 a.m. and returning at 11 p.m.

“I remember hearing time and time again that business school is a full-time job,” she said. “I never understood the magnitude of it until I was in the thick of the situation.”

For Tazia, the crush came fast. “Classwork and recruiting activities ramped up much more quickly than I expected,” she said. “It is manageable, but not without organization.”

In addition to the crush of work, Elva said she could have used more of a reality check on the financial demands of b-school. “I wish I would be told to save money,” she said. “Then, save some more! Business school comes with so many trips and extracurricular opportunities you want to take advantage of, so be financially prepared to reduce some of that unwanted stress.”

What adjustments did you have to make once you understood what b-school was really like?
For Tazia, that meant becoming very, very scheduled. “I had to get back into the habit of maintaining a detailed calendar,” she said. “Group meetings, assignments, calls to my mom—they’re all in my calendar now.”

They all agreed that a laser-focus on their calendar has helped them survive the first few months of business school.

“I really had to take a step back and think about how I allocate my time and energy,” Tobby said. “I had to come to terms that there were marginal returns to every activity. As a result, I made up a saying: YOMBAO (You Only MBA Once). It helps to remind me that I need to do everything I can to make the most of these two years.”

Alejandro noted that sanity demands attention to oneself. He enjoys cooking and uses it as an opportunity to recharge. “It is OK to relax sometimes and not feel guilty about it,” he said. Plus, the hobby has allowed him to create fellowship opportunities among his b-school colleagues by hosting pot-luck dinners and sharing favorite dishes such as Cuban picadillo (sautéed ground beef), arroz con pollo (rice with chicken), and salted caramel flan.

Do you know yet what you’ll be doing in the summer? What options are you weighing and what will be the deciding factors?
Two of our students have locked down their plans this summer with internships. Alejandro will be a brand management intern at S.C. Johnson & Son (a Consortium partner), based either in Racine, Wisc., or Chicago. “I chose this opportunity after weighing different options, paying specific attention to the daily requirements of the role, internal development, and company culture,” he said.

Meanwhile, Tite will be an associate brand management intern at Mars Inc. in the company’s pet care division in Nashville. She made site visits and interacted with numerous employees as she weighed options for her summer employment.

“A phrase that I heard many times during recruiting for business school that resurfaced through internship recruiting is ‘finding the fit/culture that speaks to you,'” she said. “Making a real impact while being developed were some of the most important factors that led to my decision to join Mars.”

Tazia and Tobby are weighing offers now. Like Tite, Tobby noted that the chance to do meaningful work is partially driving her decision.

“I am really focusing on roles that would offer me the greatest growth opportunities,” Tobby said. “The factors that are driving my decision-making are high-impact work, office locations, and a people-centered culture.

Pictured above: Elva Garza, Alejandro Bolívar-Cervoni, Tazia Middleton, Tite Jean-Pierre and Tobby Yi — the Consortium students we’re following through business school.

The post Student series: Adjusting to the rigors of business school appeared first on The Consortium.
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Chris Evans: Consortium MBA boosts family business [#permalink]

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New post 06 Dec 2016, 10:00
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: Chris Evans: Consortium MBA boosts family business
When The Consortium’s Karen Green reached out to a family friend for help producing #GivingTuesday T-shirts, we soon discovered that her friend was actually an alumnus of the organization. T-shirt King Chris Evans graduated with his MBA as a Consortium fellow from the University of Michigan in 2004.

In spite of the “side-eye” he received from professors, classmates and even his friends, Chris decided to take his MBA back to his family’s Kansas City business, where he turned T-Shirt King Inc., from a local concern to a national powerhouse in branded apparel and other paraphernalia.

We following up to learn more about the charge he gets being closely connected to his community, his nonprofit foundation to create “Kings” in his hometown, and the need to be happy before becoming successful.

How did you hear about The Consortium?
I learned about The Consortium from my mentor/co-worker and fellow alum of Morehouse College Eric Gilkesson. My first job out of Morehouse was with A.T. Kearney and every year we would have a meeting with all of the African American consultants in the firm at the National Black MBA conference.

This particular year, the conference was in Detroit and I had the chance to hang out with Eric, his Michigan classmates and other Consortium alums. I was immediately impressed with their career success and level-headedness…just all around “good people.”

Upon doing the technical research, I immediately knew that I wanted to be among the network of Consortium fellows.

You received your MBA at Michigan in 2004. How was that experience?
Cold. No, like really cold.

Seriously, The Consortium afforded me the opportunity to truly live my dreams. While at Michigan, I studied finance and entrepreneurship. I was always fascinated with the idea of Wall Street and I was “good” with numbers, but I also had a burning desire to return to Kansas City and run my family’s T-shirt business.

During the spring break of my first year, I went to New York to finalize the details of an investment banking internship. My return flight was to Kansas City, where I spent the remainder of my spring break.

During that time, I spent a few days working with my dad in the business. Upon returning to school, I made the decision to “intern” in Kansas City with T-Shirt King Inc. instead of going to Wall Street.

While it was a tough decision, I figured if things did not work out as planned, I could always return to school and navigate the traditional second-year recruiting process. Needless to say, I spent my second year of business school re-writing the business plan for T-Shirt King.

Yep, I got the side-eye from classmates, professors and even my mama. Being a Consortium fellow with a Michigan education, I knew phase two of the family business would be a success.

What is T-Shirt King? Tell us more about the family business.
T-Shirt King Inc. has been providing schools, churches, businesses, sports teams and community organizations with the highest quality promotional products, custom screen-printed apparel and embroidered garments since 1985. We specialize in creating marketing solutions for our customers. Our aim is to ensure that their brand has the confidence it deserves.

T-Shirt King was started by both of my parents, so they were excited that I wanted to take their “baby” to the next level. Both of my parents always had a full-time job outside of the business, so the business was for supplemental income.

In fact, I was technically the first full-time employee. My dad was actually ecstatic when he found out that I wanted to re-write the business plan! He was in charge of the day-to-day operations and this would mean instant change for him. One of the things that I love about my family is that we were able to pass the business along from generation to generation without the negative issues that you see in many family businesses.



How did your MBA affect the T-Shirt King business?
The T-shirt business is more or less a trade. However, when you combine it with the technical business training of an MBA, the possibilities are extremely exciting. Branding the business and packaging our story was an extremely important part of our growth.

When I started, we had almost 20 years of experience serving the Kansas City community. Combining our reputation and customer loyalty with a clearly defined strategic plan enabled us to secure corporate and government contracts, serve customers outside of Kansas City and develop relationships with new suppliers.

While we had the pedigree of an experienced company, I approached every aspect of the business as if we were a startup. This included upgrading our equipment and processes. It sounds crazy now, but in 2003, we had no internet access. Everything was done via fax.

How did The Consortium help?
When I started working in the family business, T-Shirt King’s total revenue was less than the average MBA salary. On paper, this was a huge financial risk for me. The bottom line is that without The Consortium, I would have never considered returning to Kansas City to run our family’s business.

When I say CGSM enabled me to “live my dreams,” I mean just that. We live in a world where we choose salaries and prestige over happiness. The Consortium is the springboard that opened the doors for me to return to my community and to make a direct impact on others.

Tell us about that impact.
Part of the draw of running the family business is the excitement of being closely connected to my community. Last year, I started the I AM KING FOUNDATION, which provides a strong foundation for boys to become Kings.

We use competitive baseball as a platform to teach our young Kings character, discipline and integrity while developing them into positive community leaders. We have 70 boys across five teams—including the 2016 8U state champions. Off the field, we have developed the Badges & Baseball program with the Kansas City Police Department.

Badges & Baseball is a sports camp designed to engage our Kings with law enforcement officers at an early age. In this one-day camp, Kansas City Police Department officers teach the fundamentals of baseball, but more importantly, they teach the proper protocol when interacting with law enforcement.

Advice for current students?
Graduate school is a time to be selfish. Take the classes that you are passionate about and spend time building a solid foundation for a happy life. It’s easy to get caught up in the “traditional” career path that may lead to an unfulfilled life.

We live in a unique time. Technology is changing our lives at a faster pace than textbooks are being created. The traditional methods of learning have changed drastically. Use graduate school as a time to build yourself into a learning, loving machine.

Contrary to popular belief, happiness precedes success.

The post Chris Evans: Consortium MBA boosts family business appeared first on The Consortium.
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UCLA: A diversity conference built for the Prop 209 era [#permalink]

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New post 20 Dec 2016, 11:00
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: UCLA: A diversity conference built for the Prop 209 era
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Alexander Cain (UCLA ’17)

It’s been 20 years since California voters approved Proposition 209, which bans governmental institutions involved with public employment, contracting and education from considering race, sex or ethnicity. The start of that era compelled the University of California, Berkeley, to leave The Consortium—only to return when revised eligibility requirements for The Consortium made it possible.

When Berkeley returned in 2010, the University of California, Los Angeles, also joined The Consortium, and has worked tirelessly to increase its population of underrepresented minorities. Last month, UCLA’s Anderson School of Management hosted its annual diversity conference. Consortium student Alexander Cain (’17) shared his perspectives on that experience in a UCLA Anderson blog post.

“Anderson faces the challenge of ignoring (race, sex and ethnicity in admissions decisions), but still striving for diversity,” Cain wrote. “I believe Anderson provides great support for diverse applicants because the UCLA Anderson administration—which includes Alex Lawrence (’99), Kimberly Freeman ’02), Gary Fraser and Vickie Euyoque, among many others — is itself diverse.”

Cain said he participated in Anderson’s Embracing Diversity Conference Nov. 17-19 “to tell my Anderson story, gain an understanding of the pressing challenges among new prospects and give back to my community of African-Americans.”

Highlights from the Experience
Cain shared a few of the insights he found significant.

  • The whole event defied his experience with past diversity events, which often speak about diversity of thought, without a multicultural array of participants, or parade a diverse set of participants with little thought to the underlying significance of valuing diversity.
  • He was grateful to hear about support from Anderson for initiatives such as a Black Lives Matter fireside and its investment in The Consortium.
  • “Anderson Afternoons,” a weekly happy hour, gave prospects a chance to ask candid questions about the community at UCLA.
  • Prospective students were excited to hear from Rick Welts, president and chief operating officer of the Golden State Warriors and the first prominent sports executive who is openly gay—a C-suite executive sharing his experience and the challenges he faced.
Read more of Cain’s report from UCLA Anderson’s Embracing Diversity Conference.

The post UCLA: A diversity conference built for the Prop 209 era appeared first on The Consortium.
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1st Consortium class: Carl Bradford’s 1969 letter to Sterling Schoen [#permalink]

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New post 03 Jan 2017, 10:01
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: 1st Consortium class: Carl Bradford’s 1969 letter to Sterling Schoen
Carl Bradford was among the first 21 African American men recruited in the first Consortium class, which started its MBA experience in 1967. The California man received his MBA from Indiana University-Bloomington in 1969.

Bradford worked for Lockheed Missiles and Space Co. in Sunnyvale when he came across an article mentioning The Consortium in Jet Magazine in March 1966. Apparently, that very day, he wrote a letter inquiring about the program and seeking more information.

He was initially accepted in April 1966 as an alternate in the program and, a month later, received word that he was accepted for a full $2,500-per-year fellowship to attend Indiana. He was a generous contributor to The Consortium, financially and in volunteer time. He worked for Esso International after graduating and later worked for Chase Manhattan, where he was featured in an ad campaign for the company (see related photo).

Bradford died July 7, 1992. We found the letter below in Bradford’s file among The Consortium archives. He wrote it on the eve of his departure from Indiana to Consortium founder Sterling Schoen. We thought it was worth sharing.

* * *

Image
Carl Bradford, member of the first Consortium class, featured in a Chase ad.

Dear Dr. Schoen:

As you know, I am completing the requirements for the MBA degree at Indiana University this June, and this happens to be my last night in Bloomington, Ind. My thoughts have been roaming over the experiences I’ve had during the past two years, and I can truthfully say that the time I have spent in the Consortium program has been most rewarding and interesting.I’ve had an opportunity to interact with people in business, professors, and other students of business, and this interaction has strengthened my confidence in my own abilities and potential to make the grade in business. I feel that this

I’ve had an opportunity to interact with people in business, professors, and other students of business, and this interaction has strengthened my confidence in my own abilities and potential to make the grade in business. I feel that this in itself represents time well spent.

After a short vacation, I will begin work as an analyst with Esso International, Inc. in New York City in their Supply and Transportation Department. If you happen to be in this

area in the near future, I would certainly appreciate the opportunity to meet with you to elaborate on my experiences in the Consortium program and in business.

I want to take this opportunity to express to you my very deep appreciation of your confidence in me as shown by your selection of me to participate in the initial phase of

the program, and by your words of encouragement to me during my attendance at Washington University. I can only hope that my performance at Indiana University and in the years to come will merit that confidence.

If I can be of service to you or the Consortium program at any time, please do not

hesitate to call on me.

Sincerely,

Carl Bradford

The post 1st Consortium class: Carl Bradford’s 1969 letter to Sterling Schoen appeared first on The Consortium.
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Consortium alum: Venture capital diversity is lacking [#permalink]

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New post 04 Jan 2017, 08:00
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: Consortium alum: Venture capital diversity is lacking
Guest blogger Mark Linao is a 2014 Consortium and University of Michigan Ross School of Business alumnus. He is a venture capitalist, startup investor and advisor, and works at a media company in the Los Angeles area. He argues that venture capital diversity is lacking.

It is no surprise underrepresented minorities comprise a small population among MBA students. This small representation similarly occurs in the technology sector and to a greater degree in venture capital leadership. Although more resources have been put into recruiting women and minorities, the workforces at Alphabet, Yahoo, Facebook and Apple still have a way to go.

Meanwhile, Consortium students are finding opportunities to learn more about the tech world, entrepreneurship and venture capital. For example, students at my alma mater participate in student-run venture funds to get experience in the field.

“It wasn’t until I began actively working with the Wolverine Venture Fund and began considering VC as a post-grad opportunity did it became clear how wide the diversity gap truly is,” said MacCalvin Romain (Michigan ’17).

And how wide is the gap? Hispanic and black employees combined only comprise of 6 percent of Facebook’s U.S. workforce. The Information points out that some companies are doing better than others, citing LinkedIn’s leadership at 35 percent female, while Microsoft’s leadership is only 18 percent female.

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Facebook Diversity Metrics. Source: Facebook Diversity Update 2016

 

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Amazon Diversity Metrics. Source: Amazon diversity workforce page

When we look at similar data on gender distribution in venture capital, we see a much greater disparity. Underrepresented minorities have even less representation at top venture capital firms when it comes to senior investment leadership positions (that role distinction is important because many venture capital firms employ non-investing roles such as marketing or HR).

Social+Capital and The Information pulled data on 72 firms and broke out the racial and gender mix of the investment leadership. They found that about 89 percent of investment decision-makers at were male, and 75 percent were white, while only 21.9 percent were Asian, 1.9 percent Hispanic and 1.2 percent black. Also, women only represented 10.7 percent of senior investment roles.

Image
Source: The Information and Social+Capital

“Often times, the lack of minorities is a result of many VC founders relying on their friendship circles and not actively searching for diverse talent,” speculated Kae Bradford, a first-year MBA student at Ross. She works with Ross’s Zell Lurie Commercialization Fund. “Given the lack of diversity within VCs, I feel more driven to educate minority own businesses about ways to gain capital through VCs.”

In 2015, Megan Smith, President Barack Obama’s chief technology officer, claimed that only 3 percent of venture funding is going to women and less than 1 percent to people of color.

What is being done to address this issue and what could be done? Big technology firms have been publishing their diversity metrics and a small number of investors have been following suit.

Also, this past summer, the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA) published its first report on diversity and inclusion, where the association highlights some of the activities and efforts focused to address diversity in venture capital. Some activities from the report include:

  • 40-plus venture capital firms with more than $100 billion under management joined NVCA Diversity Task Force members in making a commitment at the first-ever White House Demo Day to develop initiatives that encourage an inclusive innovation ecosystem in the United States
  • Highlights from investors, nonprofits, government entities and organizations that have collaborated with NVCA and are dedicated to fostering opportunity for underrepresented minorities and women.
  • Research from the entrepreneurial ecosystem on diversity, which include a reports on female founders, diversity data in venture capital and minority businesses.
Furthermore, minority-focused funds have been popping up. Intel and Comcast have funds dedicated to diverse founders, and I have met several new fund managers who are starting funds focused on female entrepreneurs.

There are many reasons we have all heard that there is such a low representation among minorities and women in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) industries. Some attribute it to pipeline issues. Others say that gender and racial bias is so ubiquitous in tech that it discourages potential female and minority employees to enter the industry and current employees to leave.

I don’t know the answer or real cause, but organizations like The Consortium can certainly help.

The Consortium has been focused on developing relationships with corporate partners in the tech industry. HP Inc., Hewlett-Packard Enterprise and Google have been partners for several years. Facebook, Amazon, Expedia, Yahoo have come on board in recent years.

Driven by the demand among students, The Consortium is creating a tech track at its annual Orientation Program & Career Forum in Atlanta in June 2017. That track, on Monday, June 12, joins career tracks that day, including marketing, corporate finance and general management.

The Consortium is continuing to reach out to the tech industry, encouraging leaders there to consider our community of promising MBA graduates for careers in the field.

Both Romain and Bradford are interested in pursuring either venture capital or entrepreneurship as a career after business school.

“Many minorities are unaware of the roles that VCs play in business and entrepreneurship and those who are aware do not typically have the opportunity or relationships that will position them to get into roles at highly competitive firms,” Bradford said.

Romain agreed, adding: “Over time, venture capitals’ lack of diversity and homogenization have hurt their bottom lines as consequence. Venture capitalists have begun to realize they risk becoming dangerously out of touch with the majority of consumers, but there is much more work to do.”

PICTURED ABOVE: Mark Linao, a 2014 MBA graduate and Consortium member from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, now works as a venture capitalist.

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Austin alumni gather for pre-Christmas happy hour [#permalink]

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New post 04 Jan 2017, 14:00
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: Austin alumni gather for pre-Christmas happy hour
We’re thrilled to show off a picture from Amy Patel, our regional alumni coordinator in Austin. This is a pre-holiday gathering of Austin-area Consortium alums (and one student) — most of whom attended The University of Texas at Austin.

Pictured (L-R) are Will Nash (Michigan, ’12); Aileen Hagert (Wisconsin, ’03); Curtis Davis (Texas, ’17); Konavis Smith (Texas, ’09); Willie Weathers (Texas, ’92); Juan Thurman (Texas, ’05); Juan’s wife (not a CGSM alum); Ron Brien (Rochester, ’99); Amy Patel (USC, ’15); and Alert Ntiri (Texas, ’12).

Amy, Aileen and Ron arranged the gathering on Dec. 8 at Red’s Porch in Austin.

Thanks for putting this together and sharing the photo!

Want to know more about how to keep up with Consortium alumni? Want to work with us to get a regional alumni chapter going? Be sure to join the Consortium’s alumni group on LinkedIn or contact Adrienne Thomas, our manager of student and alumni relations. Email her at thomasa@cgsm.org or call 636-681-5448.

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CGSM alum had met the Obamas; here is his tribute [#permalink]

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New post 20 Jan 2017, 11:01
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: CGSM alum had met the Obamas; here is his tribute
This guest blog post was written by Ramsey Jay Jr., Consortium fellow (Dartmouth, 2005) and a Wall Street-trained finance professional. He’s also the author of the book, Empowering Dreamers to Become Achievers.

* * *

“We may have different backgrounds, but we believe in the same dream that says this is a country where anything’s possible. No matter who you are. No matter where you come from.” – President Barack Obama (State of The Union, Jan. 25, 2011)

As a child, I would imagine, and then record, myself speaking with leaders I admired (all alone in my bedroom!). In 2016, that dream became possible when I was honored to meet President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama, before making opening remarks on behalf of the Ray Charles Foundation at the “Smithsonian Salutes Ray Charles: In Performance at The White House” musical celebration (video excerpt below).

Image
Ramsey Jay Jr.

This will always be a cherished memory. However, the most consequential element of visiting the White House, meeting the First Family, and speaking from East Room stage was the tangible truth that emanated and will forever remain palpable for me. The truth is that with the realization of this dream I am eternally equipped to state on the record, “Through me, by way of my journey, you now have access to a blueprint which you may leverage to propel you to indeed be ‘Next.’”

That is the essence of “Empowering Dreamers To Become Achievers” and I am thankful to have had this catalyzing moment occur in the presence of the Commander in Chief, and for that I say thank you, Mr. President.

Jan. 19, 2017, marks the final full day of President Obama’s presidency. I commend President Obama for his exemplary service to our nation, his ability to instill an unwavering sense of confidence in the resilient spirit of Americans, and leadership through both trial and triumph.

As I reflect on the night of Nov. 4, 2008, with the election of (then Senator) Barack Obama to the presidency, I believe the United States cast a generational ballot which continues to translate into a myriad of transformative messages about the future of our democracy, two of which I will share briefly.

(1) Young People’s Currency For Good Is Invaluable: I think about the many young people who might have been equitably engaged, pre ‘08, who will now be unwavering activists in the political process, social discourse, and evolving economic paradigm. President Obama has further stirred my conscious to appreciate that while the prism through which they view their realities and prospects may differ, their collective impact for good is currency that cannot be underestimated, and further fortifies my charge to create, and deliver, dynamic programming which empowers them.

President Obama’s presidency galvanized and mobilized young people of all creeds and I hope can inspire us all to believe that such precocious talents can once again rise up for good again if we empower them.

(2) Human Bridges Thwart Divisiveness: A physical bridge allows one to traverse from one local to another. Utilizing President Obama as the manifestation of the “human bridge,” juxtaposed to the physical bridge, I believe we have been left a ready template upon which campaigns of unity can, and must, be crafted to triumph over fractions of divisiveness.

I concur that in the New Year of 2017, there are chords of discontent across the country, some of which are agitated with legitimate reason. Respectfully, I believe the canvas upon which the aforementioned template must be practiced requires me to be consistent and purposeful in “getting comfortable being uncomfortable,” while availing myself to financial/investment corporations, academic institutions, local/national government affiliates, faith-based organizations, etc.

I believe each of these entities possesses agendas with the potential to benefit “We the People,” if executed with counsel and expertise yielded by the elements of the human bridge I believe are able to resonate in each of us.

History provides a global reservoir of evidence that faith in the possibility is requisite to erect, or mend, bridges of disconnect or discontent. In that vein, I encourage you to join me in faithfully embracing the anything’s possible spirit henceforth in 2017. I believe President Obama’s final paragraph in his thank you letter to the nation captures the pulse of this spirit. Thank you, Mr. President.

“And when the arc of progress seems slow, remember: America is not the project of any one person. The single most powerful word in our democracy is the word ‘We.’ ‘We the People.’ ‘We shall overcome.’ Yes, we can.” – President Barack Obama (Thank You Letter To The Nation Jan. 19, 2017)

Pictured Above: Faye Davidson, Robert Davidson, Jr., Ramsey Jay Jr., First Lady Michelle Obama, President Barack Obama, Valerie Ervin, Fred Booker, Suzanne Alpert, Stewart Alpert at The White House, 2016.



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Indiana’s Consortium contingent hosts MLK Day of Service [#permalink]

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New post 24 Jan 2017, 15:00
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: Indiana’s Consortium contingent hosts MLK Day of Service
Erica Smith, Consortium liaison, Indiana University-Bloomington class of 2017, wrote this guest post for The Consortium.

Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’

– Martin Luther King Jr.

Jan. 16 marked the 31st anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr. Day in the United States. As members of The Consortium for Graduate Study in Management, we share many of the same values as the preeminent leader of the civil-rights movement — the foremost being service.

Consortium members at the Kelley School of Business observed the national holiday by participating in a variety of service and activism activities at Indiana University and in the greater Bloomington community.

Each year, Indiana University kicks off its celebration of the life of Dr. King with the annual Martin Luther King Jr. Leadership Breakfast. The keynote speaker for this year’s event was seven-time Emmy winner John Quiñones, a renowned ABC news correspondent and current host of the award-winning show “What Would You Do?”

Quiñones spoke about his lifelong passion for promoting justice and equality through journalism.

“I had the opportunity to start MLK Day by hearing not only a motivational speaker, but someone who demonstrates many of the qualities that Dr. King always spoke of — qualities such as humility, speaking out, finding the good in everyone and everything, and the power of inspiring others and being inspired. Hearing John Quiñones speak reminded me of my own childhood and the importance of having great mentors, supporters, and sponsors on your side,” Awa Diaw (Kelley ‘18) said.

Chelsea Trotter (Kelley ‘18) also left the annual MLK Day breakfast feeling energized and inspired. “Many others gave inspirational speeches with a call to action and how to get involved in the much-needed dialogue around race, diversity and helping others both at IU and the Bloomington community,” she said. “I was impressed to see the mayor of Bloomington in attendance, as well as the Diversity and Inclusion Office of IU have so much support for IU’s African-American students.”

After leaving the breakfast, Kelley Consortium members flocked to a variety of community service events in Bloomington — dispersing themselves across numerous projects to achieve a wider impact.

Image
Creative notecards designed by Consortium members Kelly Fryer (Kelley ‘17) and Sumedha Makker (Kelley ‘17) for a Habitat for Humanity fundraiser on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Consortium members Kelly Fryer (Kelley ‘17) and Sumedha Makker (Kelley ‘17) participated in a Habitat for Humanity project at St. Mark’s Church in Bloomington, in which they designed notecards for the organization to use in a fundraiser.

“It was a really fun activity and it was great to meet others in the community that we don’t really get to interact with on a regular basis,” said Makker. Fryer also shared positive reflections on the St. Mark’s service event. “It was a great opportunity to give back to the community, get to know this congregation, and spend time with my classmates — all while getting in touch with my rarely used artistic side too! I’m glad I made it a ‘Day On, not a Day Off!’”

It was truly a full “Day On!” for Diaw, who continued to commemorate King in a service event at the Mathers Museum of World Cultures in Bloomington later that afternoon.

“I attended a volunteer opportunity with the organization Lotus Project, where we made stars to end violence. This art project showed the power of art in inspiring change globally,” she said.

The celebratory day in Bloomington concluded with a lecture on criminal justice reform at Buskirk-Chumley Theatre, featuring Adam Foss, former assistant district attorney in the juvenile division of the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office in Boston and current advocate for criminal justice reform.

For Awa Diaw (Kelley ‘18), the events throughout the day had a lasting impact that would resonate with her for years to come.

“I continue to be inspired at the Kelley School of Business, by my Consortium peers, my non-Consortium peers, and the wider Indiana University (community). I am reminded to continue to do good, to speak up when I see injustice, to inspire others, and to drive change. For that, I am grateful beyond measure.”

PICTURED ABOVE: Consortium members Kate Childs (Kelley ‘18), Chelsea Trotter (Kelley ‘18), and Awa Diaw (Kelley ‘18) made stars to end violence as part of the Lotus Project’s initiative in Bloomington.

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Consortium alum’s ‘day in the life’ at Nationwide [#permalink]

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New post 26 Jan 2017, 09:01
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: Consortium alum’s ‘day in the life’ at Nationwide
Image
John Davis, Nationwide internal management consultant in the company’s business transformation office.

A Consortium alumnus is featured in a Nationwide corporate video aimed at highlighting opportunities at the Fortune 100 company—along with the Columbus, Ohio, community where it’s based.

And it’s not the first time John Davis has hit the media jackpot with Nationwide. The 2013 University of Rochester MBA graduate was also featured in a Fortune magazine article highlighting the company’s “unusual practice of on-the-spot hiring.”

That’s right: Attending the National Black MBA Association conference in 2013, Davis chatted with an HR representative, then a chief technology officer in more depth. The next day, he received an offer letter from Nationwide.

“I felt at home when I talked to the Nationwide folks. There was a degree of connection,” said Davis, who works as an internal management consultant in the company’s business transformation office. “Some of the people mentioned in that Fortune article still mentor me.”

His job allows him to “get into work with a degree of ambiguity about it,” which allows him to use a variety of problem-solving abilities as he works across functional areas—including sales, actuarial and finance.



Members of the HR team approached Davis about doing a video because he’s not a native of Columbus—he’s from Long Island—and one of the keys to the project was conveying to job seekers the professional and personal opportunities available in the city.

“They wanted to use my story to drive home that it’s not a stuffy insurance company,” Davis said. “There are young people coming in. It’s a thriving city, and it’s a great organization to work for.”

The video tails Davis from his apartment in the city’s Short North neighborhood, to a bistro with friends, to scenes from throughout his day at Nationwide’s nearby headquarters—complete with a workout in the company gym.

The two-day video shoot included extensive interviews with the production team as they worked to assemble a storyboard for the scenes they wanted to capture. Davis said he’s particularly proud that the video really captures his personality. “It’s not contrived from the mind of a director or producer. It’s all me. That’s what everyone is commenting on.”

The opportunity at Nationwide followed Davis’ experience at his Consortium OP in Minneapolis in 2011. He spoke to a number of potential employers, but never moved beyond informational interviews at that stage.

“I didn’t get job offers at OP, but it gave me my first experience in what it’s going to be like. It set the tone going into National Black that upcoming year,” he said. “It also really set home the value of the organization. I’m forever appreciative of the opportunity the Consortium gave me.”

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50 years ago: Jet magazine article about new Consortium [#permalink]

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New post 30 Jan 2017, 08:00
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: 50 years ago: Jet magazine article about new Consortium
In early January, we introduced you to a member of the first Consortium class, Carl Bradford, and shared a thank-you letter he sent founder Sterling Schoen after he received his MBA from Indiana University-Bloomington. In that piece, we recalled that Bradford first heard about The Consortium from a Jet Magazine article in March 1967.

We found the article.

Image
The March 16, 1967, edition of Jet Magazine, including an article about The Consortium, which was just recruiting its first class of students. Original Consortium student Carl Bradford mentioned the article in a letter to Sterling Schoen inquiring about the program.

The March 16, 1967, edition of Jet featured a detailed report on the Mississippi car-bomb assassination a few weeks earlier of NAACP treasurer Wharlest Jackson—complete with shocking photographs and interviews with chapter president George Metcalfe, who had survived a similar attack 18 months earlier.

News items ranged from the possible marriage of “comely cow-girl” Ena Hartman and Oscar-winner Maximillian Schell to the San Francisco mayor’s failed effort to overturn “whites-only” membership restrictions at a private club where he belonged.

Buried on page 48 of the edition: A 159-word article that never mentions “The Consortium,” but outlines the purpose and opportunity of the new organization. This is the article Carl Bradford saw, prompting an inquiry letter to Sterling Schoen the same day.

Here is the full text of the Jet Magazine article.

Free Fellowships, Tuition In Business For Negroes

Image
Page 48 of the March 16, 1967, Jet Magazine. This is the article that appeared about The Consortium.

Several fellowships plus free tuition are available to Negro college graduates to fill the gap between the supply and demand for qualified Negroes in the business management career field.

The fellowship program, created at the University of Indiana, Washington University and University of Wisconsin, is designed to provide formal graduate business study in the regular Master of Business Administration curricula at one of the sponsoring schools.

The primary objective is to provide for future executives the capacity to deal with problems of choice, complexity and change involved in the successful management of a complex firm in an ever-changing environment.

Each student accepted will receive a fellowship of $2,500 a year for living and personal expenses, plus paid tuition, and $500 a year for each dependent up to a maximum of two. Address inquiries and applications to: Dr. Sterling H. Schoen, Graduate School of Business, Washington University, Box 1132, St. Louis, Mo. 63130.

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In Valentine’s month, can you ‘show your love, share your love’? [#permalink]

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New post 31 Jan 2017, 15:01
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: In Valentine’s month, can you ‘show your love, share your love’?
For five decades, The Consortium for Graduate Study in Management has been the catalyst for changing the face of Business schools and corporate America. United, we are stronger. Show Your Love, Share Your Love is designed to promote advocacy and awareness for the important work we do. During the month of February, Show Your Love, Share Your Love for the organization.

ADVOCATE
AWARENESS

Raise awareness of who we are and what we do
Take a selfie wearing your Consortium SWAG (e.g., pin, shirt, etc.)

Tweet about the importance of diversity and inclusion using hashtag #CGSM51
Write a brief blog post about how The Consortium enhanced your future

Agree to a videotaped interview discussing diversity
Share personal photos of your Orientation Program

Share our mission at your place of employment

If you’re interested in being interviewed by our communications director, please send your contact information to communications@cgsm.org. Please send awareness submissions to communications@cgsm.org. Label the subject line “Show Your Love, Share Your Love” for both.

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Consortium alum: Emotions are the key to maintaining motivation [#permalink]

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New post 01 Feb 2017, 08:01
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: Consortium alum: Emotions are the key to maintaining motivation
This guest blog post on emotions and motivation was written by Ramsey Jay Jr., Consortium fellow (Dartmouth, 2005) and a Wall Street-trained finance professional. He’s also the author of the forthcoming book, Empowering Dreamers to Become Achievers.

Emotions are not just the result of chemical reactions in your brain and gut. They are signposts that yield critical insights to help guide you on the pathway to realizing your destiny. As students, alumni and prospective MBA candidates, you unquestionably have, and will continue to receive, adequate guidance to develop the measurable and technical disciplines to support your professional development.

However, in order to effectively maximize the opportunities said disciplines will afford, you must marry them with “booster” emotions, the key ingredients to maintaining motivation.

Consortium CEO Peter Aranda III evokes the power of marrying emotion while developing measurable skills in his 2012 Consortium OP speech and a call and response sequence: “Be proud (I AM proud!). Be gracious (I AM gracious!). Be humble (I AM humble!). Be ready (I AM ready!).”

Moreover, our current political climate has borne witness to an epic display of emotions that have been translated into passionate demonstrations, while evoking First Amendment rights to free speech and assembly, which are undergirding the structure of our democracy. These are both textbook examples of incubating emotions in a place that breaks the grip of inertia and motivates purposeful action.

In Chapter 2 of my book Empowering Dreamers To Become Achievers, I identify the big four motivating emotions, which, when properly harnessed, can propel you toward your destiny.

  • Fear. You might subscribe to the adage that fear paralyzes, and in many cases, that is true. However, in certain circumstances, the right kind of self-invoked fear can instantly and effectively change your thinking and habits.
  • Love. Motivating love is the kind of abiding love that drives you to feel replenished, while depleting yourself to serve someone or something beyond yourself: Your God, your spouse, your children, or your country.
  • Passion. Passion is that thing you obsess over, that ignites vigorous energy in your spirit. However, unfulfilled passion can metastasize into crippling regret.
  • Gratitude. It is critical to understand that gratitude is more than just thankfulness. It is a fierce desire to make proud the people who believed in, supported and inspired you.
Image
Ramsey Jay Jr. and his grandmother Mary Lee Barrett.

In this entry, I would like to focus on gratitude by sharing about my grandma, Mary Lee Barrett. She lived in the old South of Georgia and grew up in an era governed by racism and oppressive Jim Crow laws that forbade her from pursuing her dreams, yet she always encouraged me to follow mine.

A few of my most cherished memories are of her being present at my graduation from Ventura High School; California State University, Fresno; and the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth. She would often say to me, “Hey Ram, keep on!” Those words inspired me to fulfill my calling and maintain motivation throughout the trials and tribulations I faced during my academic journey.

She was promoted to heaven in 2010 and my gratitude toward my grandma has been a potent motivator for me to keep pushing and striving. Who in your life inspires that kind of heartfelt gratitude? I encourage you to invest quality time to commune with them, as I believe you will find an unlimited reservoir of motivation.

As you progress on your journey, make a commitment to embrace the motivating emotions of fear, love, passion and gratitude. Once you do, discern what they are telling you, follow up and take the proper actions. Developing that acute awareness—that new dimension of perspective—takes hard work. I implore you to be disciplined and stick with it. It can change everything.

Keep dreaming!

Ramsey Jay Jr. is a Wall Street-trained finance professional with more than a decade of global investment management experience. As founder of Ramsey Jay Jr. & Associates, Ramsey is a widely recognized expert on leadership development, communication consulting and international motivational speaking. Ramsey earned his undergraduate degree from California State University, Fresno, and his MBA from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College as a Consortium fellow in 2005. His forthcoming book is Empowering Dreamers to Become Achievers. Preorder the book on his website.

PICTURED ABOVE: Ramsey delivering the keynote address at the Los Angeles County Alliance for Boy & Girls Teen Summit. The summit featured programming to empower youth to be proactive about achieving personal goals and professional success.

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What have we done for you lately? [#permalink]

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New post 02 Feb 2017, 07:00
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: What have we done for you lately?
If you’re a Consortium alumnus, you might be wondering what the answer to that question is: What have we done for you lately, since you finished your MBA program with one of our member schools?

Well, we strive to always have an answer to that question. Without you—our living testimony—we overlook a lasting impact and legacy for our students, alumni and corporate America. It’s time we pour into you!

Recently, we surveyed our alumni to determine how we can work on cultivating meaningful relationships with you. It was a good first step in hearing your thoughts and opinions. Thank you for your candor.

First, Save the Date
But before we get to the survey results, we want to share a request for all our alumni to save the date for the 51st annual Orientation Program and Career Forum, June 9-14, in Atlanta. The survey was designed to give us insight and information as we plan alumni events in Atlanta, and we believe we’re offering the “right” mix of content and camaraderie.

Sure, live events cost both time and money to attend, but if you measure your time spent and your ROI, don’t events come out on top? This one will! Check the OP page on our website often for updates and the registration link.

And by the way: Yes, the survey is done, but you can still have your say. We’re interested in what will get you excited about going to OP this year, what programming would help and what concerns you might have. Please email me directly. “Alumni” is part of my title and I would like to hear from you at thomasa@cgsm.org.

Now, Here’s How You Responded…
Networking is of the most interest to you. Interfacing with corporate partners, along with an alumni-only dinner and an opportunity to mingle with students followed closely.

Image

You would attend the Orientation Program and Career Forum (OP) for the right programming. 81.6 percent agreed. Others cited time away from work/family and the expense as deterrents.

Two days of programming with one overnight stay is a viable option for the majority of you.

Image

Overwhelmingly, you will support regional events held near you.

 Image


And a Few Comments from the Survey…
“Alumni relations are extremely important for our overall cause. I strongly encourage CGSM to invest more efforts into strengthening alumni ties. This will eventually lead to a stronger presence of minorities in corporate America, increased donations to CGSM, and more applications for CGSM incoming students (via word of mouth from alums).”

“More coordination, organization and support for regional chairs. Currently, the onus is on the head of the regional chapter to plan, execute and engage with alumni. As busy professionals, this is very hard to do.”

“This survey is a great start to identifying ways to be engaged. Please let us know the ideas generated. Knowing more about what regional chapters are doing (maybe a calendar) might also encourage participation for those of us who travel and might want to connect.”

“If no one has stepped up to lead a regional chapter, I think the Consortium should take the proactive step to recruit chapter leaders. I think a lot of alums don’t know about the alumni regional chapters.”

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Consortium student teaches campus crowds how to ‘Pimp My Gmail’ [#permalink]

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New post 17 Feb 2017, 08:00
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: Consortium student teaches campus crowds how to ‘Pimp My Gmail’
In a cry for help, Ashlyee Freeman heard from a friend who had 41,000 unread emails in his Gmail inbox. Up to that point, Freeman—a first-year MBA student and Consortium member at the Michigan Ross School of Business—had shared her tips for managing Gmail with a few dozen classmates.

“He would not stop talking about it with people,” Freeman said. “So now I have another club engagement.”

Image
Ashlyee Freeman, Michigan Ross School of Business, produces a program called Pimp My Gmail.

Yup. The Gmail classes have begun to go wide. About 200 people in the Ross community have clicked into her class, with the invitations still coming.

She’s even branded her presentation with the moniker, “Pimp My Gmail.” She’s made the presentation to members of her section of classmates and received invitations to share it with a host of campus-based clubs and organizations. (You can view her presentation deck here.)

She teaches participants how to better manage the cloud-based email platform that serves more than 1 billion monthly users—including the students, faculty and staff at the Ross School of Business.

She shows them cool tips and tricks for using labels and filters to wrangle their inbox. She’s even showed them about experimental Gmail features that can further streamline the experience—including “canned responses,” a feature that lets users prepare pre-written responses to frequently received incoming messages.

“I just took Gmail for granted,” Freeman said. She had started an online magazine for teens called My Everyzine several years earlier, relying on Google’s G Suite—its stable of cloud-based productivity apps, including Google Drive and Gmail (note: Google is a Consortium corporate partner).

“When I had a parallel corporate career, I was always the person trying to convert them from Outlook to G Suite,” Freeman said. “Then I started working for Google.”

There, Freeman worked as a project manager for the head of YouTube Spaces, working across different divisions within the company.

Her past professional experiences led her to work toward her MBA. “I wanted to make sure that what I did was aligned with my purpose,” Freeman said. “I feel like my purpose is unlocking possibilities through innovation, education and development. It’s very much my guiding light.”

She’ll start putting that to the test this summer when she goes to work for Accenture (another Consortium corporate partner) as a strategy consultant.

In a LinkedIn blog post about her Gmail program, Freeman noted how flattering it was to be appreciated for something she’s learned to do to improve her own efficiency. “It felt spectacular to teach others the skills I learned while using Google to build my own business during the last six years.”

Ashlyee’s Top Five Gmail Tips
  • Archive emails to declutter your inbox: I favor archiving instead of deleting. It gets the emails out of your way, but they are still accessible through search.
  • Create as many labels as you find useful: It’s great that an email can have multiple labels, but you don’t need labels for everything. If you would only use the label once, it isn’t worth it.
  • Create a “#Winning” label: Sometimes, it’s hard to keep track of your accomplishments. Many times, there is evidence of them in your email. Mark them as “#Winning” so you have them available when you craft your interview stories.
  • Use automatic filters: Some emails just don’t need your attention right away. Use filters to shift them to another mailbox, label, or mark-as-read.
  • Use mobile shortcuts to write thank-you emails in seconds: Set up your keyboard shortcuts to deploy one of your common email templates. For example, when I type “g2m” in my phone, it automatically replaces the text with my typical “great to meet you” email. Then I customize it and send.
Pictured Above: Ashlyee Freeman, Michigan Ross School of Business (2018), has given her “Pimp My Gmail” presentation to hundreds of fellow students on campus.

The post Consortium student teaches campus crowds how to ‘Pimp My Gmail’ appeared first on The Consortium.
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Indiana University: Studying abroad provides cultural experience [#permalink]

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New post 24 Feb 2017, 14:00
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: Indiana University: Studying abroad provides cultural experience
Adam Williamson, Consortium member, Indiana University-Bloomington class of 2017, wrote this guest post for The Consortium.

A month and a half into the new year 2017, a group of Kelley Consortium students continued their MBA studies abroad. Class of 2017 members Adam Williamson, Jamal Pope, Stan Craft and DeAnna Hoy are studying at universities across the globe, focusing on cultural and business learnings while continuing to enhance their abilities as future global business leaders.

Image
DeAnna Hoy (Kelley ’17) at The Great Wall of China.

“Studying abroad in Shanghai, China, has been one of the best decisions of business school,” Hoy said. Her fellow classmates across the globe echo this sentiment. Craft and Pope, who are studying at WHU-Otto Beisheim School of Management in Düsseldorf, Germany, have both found many commonalities between Indiana University and WHU.

“Both are in smaller cities, but have drawn diverse groups of students to their respective programs,” said Pope. The desire to further diversify their MBA experience prompted this group of students to spend the first half of the last semester of their MBA careers studying abroad.

“While we continue to grow within our own communities in both Bloomington and our respective hometowns, gaining a global perspective has continued to shape who we are as both Consortium members and Kelley MBAs,” said Craft.

For Hoy, her studies in Shanghai are more personal:

“Not only am I able to enhance my knowledge of the strength and role of mobile technology in the world’s most populated country, but I have also been given the chance to explore my personal heritage and culture,” she said. “The biggest surprises have been the competitive spirit engrained in everyone here, air pollution, and availability of amazing food on every corner. I can’t wait to see what’s to come.”

With an ever-changing political and social landscape in the United States, traveling abroad has taught our students a lot about how our actions as Americans affect the rest of the world.

For Adam Williamson, while in the midst of studies at Pontifica Universidad Católica de Chile in Santiago, the United States pulled out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) — in which Chile was one of the 14 nations in the alliance.

“The opportunity to speak with and learn from Chilean classmates regarding this decision and to hear their thoughts and unique perspectives on the matter was an incredible experience,” said Williamson.

While not in class and exploring the cultures of their universities’ countries, these students are seizing the opportunity to travel throughout their regions of study. Hoy is traveling through China and parts of southern Asia, while Pope and Craft are making their way through Western Europe.

Williamson is traveling all through South America. Certainly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, their experiences and newfound perspectives will continue to add to not only their Consortium and MBA experiences and those of their Kelley classmates when they return to Bloomington for their final term as MBA students.

Pictured Above: Stan Craft (Kelley ‘17) and Jamal Pope (Kelley ’17) with classmates in Düsseldorf, Germany.

The post Indiana University: Studying abroad provides cultural experience appeared first on The Consortium.
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1st Consortium class counsels early corporate partner on inclusion [#permalink]

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New post 27 Feb 2017, 12:01
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: 1st Consortium class counsels early corporate partner on inclusion
Fifty years ago, as the first Consortium class was beginning its work with our brand new organization, the members of that class had a chance to interact with the first corporate partners.

In a Sept. 1, 1967, letter to Continental Oil Executive Vice President Howard W. Blauvelt, the Consortium class outlined ideas about how the company could be more active in civil rights and equal employment opportunity. Many of the suggestions will be familiar to readers today.

The company, which we now know as ConocoPhillips, was one of two petroleum-related corporate partners at the launch of The Consortium. The company contributed $7,500 and was one of the first 27 partners of the organization.

In an April 15, 1968, letter to Consortium founder Sterling Schoen, Blauvelt acknowledged the suggestions and bunched them into four categories: provide meaningful positions; assist Negro education; community leadership; and influence racial attitudes of white employees. Blauvelt acknowledged the good suggestions and, in some cases, gave his company good marks for its work in several of those areas.

He wasn’t upbeat about the likelihood of change in the fourth area: “Our management philosophy and experience have indicated that we cannot dictate the racial attitudes of our employees,” he wrote. “We recognize these attitudes develop from within each person. Lecturing creates only defensiveness and counter-reaction.”

The letters appeared in the first annual report for the “Consortium for Graduate Study in Business for Negroes” in May 1968. Here is the full letter from the first Consortium class to Howard Blauvelt.

September 1, 1967

Mr. Howard W. Blauvelt

Executive Vice President

Continental Oil Company

30 Rockefeller Plaza

New York, New York 10020

Dear Mr. Blauvelt:

During Continental’s recent case presentation at Washington University, you asked us the following question:

“What do you think the Continental Oil Company should be doing in the area of civil rights and equal employment opportunity?”

The following proposals are the result of our lengthy and serious discussions; these proposals should not be considered all inclusive, but their implementation would indicate that CONOCO recognizes the necessity of extending its commitments and responsibilities within the total community. The commitment to action implicit in your request is evidence of the role of leadership we believe Continental will assume in this area.

  • Hire qualified Negroes for positions of importance and responsibility and not just for “window-dressing.”
  • Avoid the creation of “Negro jobs” and “Negro departments.”
  • Expand recruitment of qualifiable Negroes.
  • Establish direct lines of communication within the local Negro community via social action groups, radio stations aimed at the Negro market, etc.
  • Make the employees aware that good race relations are in the best interests of the company.
  • Have public relations program to improve human relations among employees.
  • Have economists point out the economic disadvantages of segregation.
  • Have a random sample of employees brainstorm problem of ways to improve race relations in the company.
  • Join with other Plans for Progress companies to jointly present the case for community action on the race problem.
  • Negotiate non-discrimination clause in all labor contracts.
  • Establish an incentive system to receive suggestions from employees to help solve current racial problems facing both the company and the community.
  • Hire a Negro behavioral scientist who is aware of the Negro’s existing conditions and the problems the Negro employee might face.
  • Require all supervisors to take a course in human relations provided or financed by the company.
  • Sponsor social events and encourage all employees to participate.
  • Create recreational facilities in local communities for all employees.
  • Use fully integrated inter-company sports to promote better relations between Negroes and white.
  • Encourage the formation of interracial committees in the company and the community.
  • Have an employees’ grievance committee handle charges of unfair racial treatment.
  • Improve and increase on-the-job training.
  • Let the community know where the company stands on controversial issues, acting as a positive force in securing fairness of treatment instead of following community mores.
  • Encourage informal, integrated groups to discuss current social problems, i.e., race relations, slums, etc.
  • Provide educational opportunities for employees who wish to upgrade themselves.
  • Provide funds to predominantly Negro colleges to attract prominent educators with special emphasis on the technical field.
  • Encourage company engineers to teach at predominantly Negro institutions to illustrate the needs for and the advantages of people engaged in engineering and other technical occupations.
  • Work with local school boards to develop employable skills in those students who plan to terminate their formal education with high school.
  • Establish cooperative training programs leading to meaningful employment in predominantly Negro high schools and colleges.
  • Provide scholarship assistance to promising Negro employees to enable them to move into managerial positions.
  • Establish scholarships at Negro colleges.
  • Establish scholarships to integrated colleges for graduating high school students.
  • Establish awards for outstanding Negro students at the high school and college level in fields of interest to the company.
  • Hire and train more Negroes native to the area of the local plants.
  • Locate plants or divisions in slum areas to take advantage of the labor supply, to aid in the elimination of slums and to improve the overall economic and social conditions.
  • Form not alignments with political parties, but with civic-minded businessmen and politicians. (With special emphasis on urban committees, e.g. “The Urban Coalitions”).
  • Sponsor educational and cultural projects for children to improve relations and demonstrate interest in their future.
  • Advertise for employees in Negro publications.
  • Offer legal assistance to employees involved in court action against discriminatory practices in the community.
  • Have lobbyists work for the passage of fair housing, fair employment, and non-discriminatory labor laws.
  • Confer with representative Negro leaders to seek solutions to the real problems of the Negro community and assist in their solution.
  • Practice fair employment because it is right and in the long terms interests of the company — not in response to government pressure.
  • Establish an integrated summer work program for college sophomores, juniors, and seniors of average and better ability. Students should be housed together,
  • Send evaluation forms to places to be visited by recruiter so interviewees can evaluate the sincerity of recruiters and return forms to the company.
Yours sincerely,

Members, Consortium for Graduate Study in Business for Negroes

  • Carl Bradford
  • Charles D. Craig, Jr.
  • Larry Harris
  • James Jackson
  • Arnell Johnson
  • King David Johnson
  • Lamont Jones
  • Kenneth Lee
  • Robert Lee, Jr.

  • Cecil Mason
  • Charles Randall
  • William Simons, Jr.
  • Edmond L. Solomon
  • Titus Taylor
  • Fitzpatrick Upshaw, Jr.
  • John Walton
  • Ray Weathersby
  • Wayne Wilson

The post 1st Consortium class counsels early corporate partner on inclusion appeared first on The Consortium.
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Pat Schoen, Consortium matriarch and WashU faculty member, dies at 90 [#permalink]

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New post 01 Mar 2017, 12:00
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: Pat Schoen, Consortium matriarch and WashU faculty member, dies at 90
The Consortium family was deeply saddened to learn today of the passing of Patricia Schoen on Sunday. As the wife of our founder, Sterling Schoen, she was a stalwart supporter of The Consortium since its inception and served as something of our matriarch through the years.

Image
Patricia Schoen

Mrs. Schoen earned her MBA in 1951 from Washington University in St. Louis and was for many years a marketing instructor in the business school, where she met Sterling Schoen.

She strongly supported Sterling in the early 1960s as he awakened to the need for an organization that could increase diversity in business education, conceived of The Consortium, and followed it through to our launch in 1966.

“Mrs. Schoen would typically understate her contribution to The Consortium, but we felt her influence and her support every day,” said Peter J. Aranda III, CEO and executive director of The Consortium.

Until recent years, when her health would not permit it, Mrs. Schoen would appear each year at the annual Orientation Program & Career Forum, where she would greet incoming students. She most recently came to our 50th Orientation Program in St. Louis in June.

“She was usually the most popular person at OP,” Aranda said, noting that students at last year’s OP lined up for the chance to greet and thank her during our founders’ reception and our 50th anniversary gala.

Mrs. Schoen was a regular financial supporter of The Consortium and was the first individual donor to provide financial support to the undergraduate we have in the planning stages. Peter would meet her for lunch at least annually. One of his fondest memories was having breakfast with her and his mother at the 2006 OP.

“They both took great joy in laughing at my expense,” he said.

Mrs. Schoen died peacefully with her family on Sunday. Daughter Jennie Jeffrey, and her family, and son Chris Schoen were able to say their goodbyes. Sterling Schoen died in 1999. Mrs. Schoen was 90.

Arrangements are as follows:

Visitation

Thursday, March 9

3-5  p.m.: Visitation opens again from 6-8 p.m.

Bopp Chapel

10610 Manchester Road

Kirkwood, MO 63122-1308

Funeral Services

Friday, March 10

11 a.m.

Ladue Chapel

9450 Clayton Rd

St. Louis, Missouri 63124

Burial and Memorial Service

Saturday, March 11

Family Burial Plot in Lufkin, Texas

Pictured above: Pat Schoen with Peter Aranda and her daughter Jennie Jeffrey at the 2016 Orientation Program in St. Louis. Photo by Brian Treffeisen.

The post Pat Schoen, Consortium matriarch and WashU faculty member, dies at 90 appeared first on The Consortium.
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Pat Schoen, Consortium matriarch and WashU faculty member, dies at 89 [#permalink]

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New post 01 Mar 2017, 13:00
FROM The Consortium Admissions Blog: Pat Schoen, Consortium matriarch and WashU faculty member, dies at 89
The Consortium family was deeply saddened to learn today of the passing of Patricia Schoen on Sunday. As the wife of our founder, Sterling Schoen, she was a stalwart supporter of The Consortium since its inception and served as something of our matriarch through the years.

Image
Patricia Schoen

Mrs. Schoen earned her MBA in 1951 from Washington University in St. Louis and was for many years a marketing instructor in the business school, where she met Sterling Schoen.

She strongly supported Sterling in the early 1960s as he awakened to the need for an organization that could increase diversity in business education, conceived of The Consortium, and followed it through to our launch in 1966.

“Mrs. Schoen would typically understate her contribution to The Consortium, but we felt her influence and her support every day,” said Peter J. Aranda III, CEO and executive director of The Consortium.

Until recent years, when her health would not permit it, Mrs. Schoen would appear each year at the annual Orientation Program & Career Forum, where she would greet incoming students. She most recently came to our 50th Orientation Program in St. Louis in June.

“She was usually the most popular person at OP,” Aranda said, noting that students at last year’s OP lined up for the chance to greet and thank her during our founders’ reception and our 50th anniversary gala.

Mrs. Schoen was a regular financial supporter of The Consortium and was the first individual donor to provide financial support to the undergraduate we have in the planning stages. Peter would meet her for lunch at least annually. One of his fondest memories was having breakfast with her and his mother at the 2006 OP.

“They both took great joy in laughing at my expense,” he said.

Mrs. Schoen died peacefully with her family on Sunday. Daughter Jennie Jeffrey, and her family, and son Chris Schoen were able to say their goodbyes. Sterling Schoen died in 1999. Mrs. Schoen would have been 90 in October.

Arrangements are as follows:

Visitation

Thursday, March 9

3-5  p.m.: Visitation opens again from 6-8 p.m.

Bopp Chapel

10610 Manchester Road

Kirkwood, MO 63122-1308

Funeral Services

Friday, March 10

11 a.m.

Ladue Chapel

9450 Clayton Rd

St. Louis, Missouri 63124

Burial and Memorial Service

Saturday, March 11

Family Burial Plot in Lufkin, Texas

Pictured above: Pat Schoen with Peter Aranda and her daughter Jennie Jeffrey at the 2016 Orientation Program in St. Louis. Photo by Brian Treffeisen.

The post Pat Schoen, Consortium matriarch and WashU faculty member, dies at 89 appeared first on The Consortium.
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Pat Schoen, Consortium matriarch and WashU faculty member, dies at 89   [#permalink] 01 Mar 2017, 13:00

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