Michele (Pisacano)Knight ’2000 is co-owner (along with her husband Dave) of Knight Accounting & Technology based in Keystone, Colo. Michele was a triple-major (Accounting, Business Administration and Economics) and subsequently earned her CPA designation. In early April she was asked to be a contributor to NPR’s Marketplace Money show. Here’s a link to her first interview:
Department chairperson Prof. Robert Letovsky had his case study “The Workplace that Kills: Suicides at France Télécom Parts A and B” published by the Georgetown University Institute for the Study of Diplomacy (ISD), Pew Case Study Center. A full listing of the Institute’s publications can be found at http://guisd.org.
On February 27, 2013, Professor and Department chairperson Robert Letovsky took students from his BU 409 Business & Public Policy class to the Vermont State House in Montpelier. The students spent the morning attending various standing committees of the House and Senate. A number of these were in session, and students were able to watch testimony and workings at the House Health Care, Natural Resources & Energy, Human Services and Ways & Means Committees, and at the Senate Health & Welfare and Finance Committees. The class then met with Sen. Philip Baruth (D- Chittenden) in the Senate chamber for a brief chat on current issues, followed by lunch in the statehouse cafeteria. Over lunch, the class met with Reps. George Till (D- Chittenden-3), Michelle Kupersmith (D- Chittenden 7-1) and Sens. David Zuckerman (P–Chittenden) and Ginny Lyon (D-Chittenden). After lunch, the class moved into the legislature chamber, and was formally introduced to the legislature by Rep. Till. The day was capped off with a brief session at the Vermont Senate before the group left to come back to campus. All in all, students felt the trip had given them a unique first-hand look at public policymaking at the state level.
On Friday, April 19, the Department hosted the annual 14th Enterprise Plan Competition at the Hoehl Welcome Center. The event, sponsored by alums Peter Worrell ’77 and Dr. Kareen Kendrick Worrell’ 79, is one of the highlights of our academic year, and represents the culmination of a lot of work over the previous six months by students and faculty. Once again this year, we had five amazing teams present their plans to a distinguished panel of judges from the business community. A special thank you to all of the competing teams who entered this year’s competition. We are happy to announce the winners of this year’s Enterprise Plan Competition:
1st Place ($5,000 prize): Culinary Connections: Emily Magee, Nora Moore, Alex Remy; Faculty Advisor: Karen Popovich
2nd Place ($2,500 prize): Shuttle Safety: Cassie Crockett, Julianne Vesciglio, Allison Graf; Faculty Advisor: Joanne Scott
3rd Place ($1,000 prize): Vermont Revamp: Teresa Lautenschlager, John Slane: Faculty Advisor; Tamara Mullarky
The event can be viewed in its entirety at the Enterprise Plan Competition web site within the Department of Business Administration & Accounting webpage: http://www.smcvt.edu/Academics/Majors-Minors-and-Curriculum/Business-Administration/Enterprise-Plan-Competition.aspx
On Saturday, April 20, 2013, the Department of Business Administration & Accounting held its annual induction ceremony for new members of Sigma Beta Delta, International Honor Society in Business, Management, and Administration. The Society was founded in 1986 to honor students who have attained superior records in business or accounting programs in schools and colleges with regional accreditation. Sigma Beta Delta’s core principles are wisdom, honor and the pursuit of meaningful aspirations. The Society currently has 380 chapters throughout the country, with over 70,000 members. The Saint Michael’s College chapter of Sigma Beta Delta was established in 2003 and held its first induction ceremony in the spring of 2004.
Following the invocation by Fr. Brian Cummings ’86 and opening remarks by Vice President for Academic Affairs Karen Talentino, chapter Officers Karen Popovich, Paul Olsen and Steve Doyon inducted thirteen Accounting and Business students (listed below). This year’s honorary inductee was Saint Michael’s College Vice-President for Enrollment Management Jerry Flanagan ’71. In his remarks to the inductees and their families, Jerry spoke eloquently about weaving a commitment to service into one’s career trajectory.
The full induction ceremony can be viewed at: https://tegr.it/y/14344
Congratulations to the 2013 Saint Michael’s College inductees into Sigma Beta Delta:
Adrianna M. Bilancieri
Kelsey A. Campbell
Justin C. Castagna
Nicholas P. Colangelo
Cassandra L. Crockett
Thomas W. Fergus
Teresa J. Lautenschlager
Michelle M. McGuinness
Erica M. Rogers
Carrie L. Sheeran
Colin T. Thompson
February and March of this year saw some of our BU students participate in a wonderful event, organized by our friends and neighbors at State University of New York Plattsburgh: the first annual Free Enterprise Olympics . This was a multi-round event involving students from Saint Michael’s, University of Vermont, Clarkson University, and five SUNY campuses.
For the first stage of the event, each participating campus held its own “Free Enterprise Speak Off” where students gave 3-5 minute speeches on the theme “Free Enterprise + Entrepreneurship: The formula for a stronger economy”. Our Free Enterprise Speak Off was held on Friday February 8. The winner was BU major Alexandra N. Brenock ’15, who won the first round prize of $150.00. (BU major Parker LeClerc ’14 won the 2nd place prize of $75.00).
Alexandra then joined a team of BU seniors (Michelle M. McGuinness, Thomas W. Fergus and Patrick S. McFetridge), accompanied by Prof. Robert Letovsky, as they travelled to SUNY Plattsburgh on Friday March 1 for the final events of the Free Enterprise Olympics. In the morning, the winners of each of the eight participating institutions gave their speeches to a panel of judges, competing for cash prizes for the top three speakers. Alexandra won the 3rd place prize of $250!
Then, in late morning, all eight student teams listened to a presentation from the representative of a local manufacturer, Smart Cart Enterprises LLC. The company challenged the student teams to develop new designs of its main product that would enable it to enter new markets and grow the business. Following the presentation, each student team was taken to a separate classroom where they were “locked up” for an hour before lunch, and then for another two hours after lunch, in order to prepare a 5 minute pitch to the company’s owner/CEO and a panel of judges.
The Saint Michael’s team focused its presentation on a new version of the company’s basic cart which would allow gardeners, farmers and athletic field operators to spread seeds, fertilizer, or sand across a wide area. The presentation offered a design for the new model, as well as a pricing and distribution strategy and a brief comparison with current competing products.
Based on the deliberation of the judges and the company’s owner/CEO, the Saint Michael’s team was awarded first prize and won the $1,000 cash prize. SUNY Albany and Clarkson finished 2nd and 3rd respectively.
We’ve attached a photo of the team posing with company CEO Martin Drolet, and one of the team “in action” as it presented to the judges.
Saint Michael’s winning team, l. to r., Alexandra N. Brenock, Thomas W. Fergus, Michelle M. McGuinness, Patrick S. McFetridge; Muller’s Carts CEO Martin Drolet, and SMC Business Department Chair Robert Letovsky.
SMC Business students presenting their design and marketing plan to the judges at the SUNY Plattsburgh Free Enterprise Olympics, March 1, 2013.
BU 209 Legal Environment of Business – SKYPE conversation with author Johnathan Harr (A Civil Action)
Prof. Bill Wargo brought Jonathan Harr, author of A Civil Action, into his Legal Environment of Business course using SKYPE, on March 5, 2013. The book, published in 1995, describes a lawsuit in which two of the country’s largest corporations were accused of contaminating the water supply in Woburn, MA, resulting in the deaths of several children. It won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction in 1995, and was later made into a movie starring John Travolta and Robert Duvall.
Bill and retired Professor Norm Walker were instrumental in bringing Mr. Harr to speak on campus in October, 1998. His talk focused on how he got involved in this project and what impact it had on his life.
Prof. Wargo reports that the SKYPE discussion with Jonathan Harr gave students new perspectives on the book and the events it described, and as well as on the issues of environmental impacts and litigation.