Cameron School of Business

Cameron Insider: The Quarterly Newsletter for Cameron School of Business Alumni

Cameron Insider: The Quarterly Update for CSB Alumni

In This Issue (February 2017):


Message from the Dean 

Dear Alumni:

Welcome to the online version of the Cameron Insider for spring 2017!

“Never forget that anticipation is an important part of life. Work's important, family's important, but without excitement, you have nothing. You're cheating yourself if you refuse to enjoy what's coming.” -- Nicholas Sparks

Homecoming probably can be summed up in one word – “anticipation.” You can feel the excitement as professors remember the name of a former student or two classmates see each other for the first time since graduation. These are great “Kodak”... err... “selfie” moments.

For those who attended Homecoming a couple of weeks ago, Sparks’s words above came to fruition as we celebrated this honored tradition. Different this year was that each college and school had the opportunity to showcase their rich history, as well as share what is on the horizon. While it was fun to stroll down memory lane and recall the original UNCW Business Department of 1969 to the present two-building Cameron School of Business, it’s what lies ahead for the Cameron School of Business that is so exciting.

We’ve all heard the adage that a rear-view mirror is much smaller than a windshield. You need a large view of where you’re going, not where you’ve been. Cameron has enjoyed a very rich history, which through progression has brought us where we are today. However, our school must grow and transform with the ever-changing world to provide the skills our students need for our day and age.

The following articles will bring to life all that your alma mater is doing and plans to do as we move Cameron forward. You will read about a recent alumni who started as an intern at New Hanover Regional Medical Center and parlayed that into a full-time position with the hospital. Touting world class faculty, Cameron is proud of our notable professor, Dr. Cetin Ciner, professor of finance. Learn about the accolades he has received for his work. Read about the wonderful career of a U.S. TABSA student who now makes the south of France his home. Lastly, get a glimpse of Cameron’s brand-new online Executive M.B.A. program. Talk about excitement!

Don’t wait for Homecoming to come back to your alma mater. Give of your time – volunteer to mentor current students or be a guest speaker at Business Week. Give of your talents – hire one of Cameron’s interns. Or give of your treasure so that Cameron can provide the same awesome experience you had while here… and when our current students come back for Homecoming as alumni, I hope they, too, will get that same feeling of excitement!

Rob Burrus

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EMBA students at their first residency at UNCW

Inaugural Online E.M.B.A. Proves Invaluable to Incoming Students

On January 13, eight professionals of varied backgrounds, ages, races and expertise gathered in Wilmington, NC as the Cameron School of Business welcomed their inaugural online E.M.B.A. cohort with a weekend-long “residency,” designed to build teamwork, communication and leadership. Their first exercise together? The Exit Games – an immersive escape room experience.

The students hit the ground running Saturday morning with sessions taught by Tammy Hunt of the UNCW Management Department, Laura Lunsford of the Swain Center, Art Padilla, specialist in toxic leadership, and Emily Dunlap Carter of Dale Carnegie. Sessions continued through Sunday.

The online E.M.B.A. program features two on-campus residencies and one week-long international residency in either Europe or Asia toward the end of the program. Though this is a fully online program, the residencies are considered an essential part of the E.M.B.A. degree to develop soft skills and build relationships among the students and program faculty. Other events of the weekend included group dinners and social and networking opportunities.

E.M.B.A. student Janis Mueller of the Small Business Technology and Development Center feels very strongly about the value of this first residency with her new classmates.

“We were able to connect in a way that allows us to now support each other through any challenges,” she said. She also appreciated meeting the faculty, dean and the chancellor over the weekend. “The people who have invested interest in us long-term were there to support us. To me, that spoke volumes.”

Jack Fuller, who is currently in operations management at a clinical research organization, also valued the opportunity to meet his classmates and faculty in person before the program officially started.

“By the time we left on Sunday, we knew quite a bit about each other and our different personalities,” he shared. “It helped us learn how we could work together in the future.” Jack is looking forward to the international residency later on in the program, as well as applying the experience gained from his coursework to different facets of his position.

Is it clear that this small cohort of professionals is already fully vested in the success of not only themselves, but their classmates as well. “It will be exciting to watch the growth of the other people in my cohort that I came to know,” said Mueller.

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Jenna HayesDecember Grad Finds a Rewarding Career with New Hanover Regional Medical Center

Very few undergraduate students enter college with a clear picture of their future career plans, and CSB graduate Jenna Hayes, who graduated December 2016, was no exception. What differentiated Jenna from some of her peers was her great drive to find her passions and her desire to make the most of what UNCW and Cameron School of Business had to offer. As a pre-business major, Jenna started out with plans to pursue a marketing concentration, but through experience and exploration, Jenna discovered her interests and talents were in human resource management. She made this discovery during her time as a “basketeer” in the floral and gifting department at the Walt Disney World Resort. 

Jenna participated in the Disney College Program twice as a student: first, in the spring of 2014, then again in the summer of 2015. This program afforded her the opportunity to work at Disney World and take a Disney course for credit at UNCW. One of the managers Jenna worked with closely at the park provided her with great insight into the HR field. Jenna also thoroughly enjoyed the recruitment and orientation process for the program and the opportunity to work with people in the park from all over the world. Upon returning to Wilmington and CSB, she promptly switched gears and her concentration to HR. Through guidance from her professors, she became engaged with the Student Human Resources Association and served as the president of the association during her senior year. Her involvement in the organization ultimately led Jenna to an internship opportunity with New Hanover Regional Medical Center. 

From May through November of 2016, Jenna worked as an HR Operations Intern for the hospital. In this role, she was exposed to an abundance of practical experience and was assigned a high level of responsibility. Specifically, she worked with recruitment and employment, which meant that one of her primary responsibilities was managing the NHRMC business internship program. This experience in human resources, the very field in which she was most interested, further confirmed her passion. She loved her time with the hospital and quickly realized that she would like make a career at NHRMC if the opportunity presented itself. Fortunately for Jenna, a position in HR became available when a colleague relocated to another department. Although the position was in a different area of HR, it was still one of considerable interest and an opportunity too good to pass up. Thus, Jenna began the rigorous interview process along with many other qualified candidates.  

On December 12, only two days after graduation, Jenna began her career with the hospital as a benefits administrator on the compensation and benefits team. Although it has only been a few weeks, Jenna has jumped in with both feet and truly enjoys the position and its challenges.  The foggy picture of her future she had as a freshman is now clear.

“I am so pleased to be in a position that provides me with a sense of purpose every day and I am thankful to be surrounded by excellent teammates that make a difference in our community.”

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Dr. Cet CinerThe Privilege and the Responsibility of a Ph.D.

"One of the naturally occurring byproducts to doing regular research as a professor is that you push your students harder and expect more," said Professor of Finance Cetin Ciner. He believes that this is just one of the many reasons it makes sense to work as a researcher while also instructing as a professor. Dr. Ciner came to UNCW in 2004 when Rob Burrus, now the Dean of Cameron School of Business, had an office only two doors down in the economics department.

Previously a professor of international finance at Northeastern, Dr. Ciner began at CSB teaching the same, although over the years, he has also taught courses in corporate finance, risk management and derivatives. He is also an instructor of the International M.B.A. international finance course module each fall and of a financial specialization statistics class each spring. He has always enjoyed doing research along the way and believes that his Ph.D. is both a privilege and a responsibility to continued research and learning. 

A number of years ago in a presentation at a finance conference, Dr. Ciner met Brian Lucey, a professor of finance at Trinity College in Dublin, who had similar interests in commodity markets, specifically in gold and silver. The two kept in touch and ultimately began working on research together in 2007 when Dr. Ciner was invited to Trinity College for a summer research fellowship, along with Jon Batten, professor of finance at Monash University in Australia. Over the years, Dr. Ciner formed a research collaboration with these colleagues and investigated a variety of commodity markets, including various metals such as gold, silver, palladium and platinum, as well as crude oil and natural gas. Their research also reviewed the macroeconomic impacts of these markets.

After more than two years of work on their most recent research, it was announced that this team of three researchers would finally be formally recognized. Their theory – that one cannot statistically determine the price of natural gas based on crude oil prices – will soon be published in the Energy Economics Journal. Additionally, because of the work Dr. Ciner has done over the years with his fellow researchers, he has recently been asked to sit on the editorial board as the subject associate editor for two very well-respected journals of finance, the Internal Review of Financial Analysis and the Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions, and Money. As a subject editor, Dr. Ciner is responsible for content review of 10-15 papers per journal annually. This is an extraordinary responsibility, and one that greatly enhances his work as a professor of Cameron’s students.

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Brian Proulx

Alumnus Brian Proulx Applies for Dual Citizenship

Brian Proulx departed the U.S.A. for France in August 2012. At the time, he had committed the next two years of his life to studying in Marseille. To Brian, this was not intimidating, nor was he unsure of his decision – Brian had known that he wanted to spend at least some of his college career abroad through Cameron School’s TransAtlantic Business School Alliance program since he was a senior in high school in 2007. So it’s not surprising to see the path he has taken over the past five years.

Brian graduated from UNCW in 2015 with a dual degree: a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a concentration in International Business and a French minor; as well as a Diplôme du Programme CeseMed (Bachelor in International Business) from Kedge Business School in Marseille.

“My experience at UNCW and at CSB shaped my future and character in more ways than I probably realize and equipped me with the necessary tools and business knowledge essential to starting a career in the international market,” he said. During his time abroad, he has had the opportunity to travel to 13 different countries, as well as live in Beijing, China, for a year and a half during 2009-10.

During his first two years living in France, Brian was fortunate enough to find an excellent six-month internship in marketing and sales support at a luxury real estate company, Home Hunts, based in Marseille. At the end of the internship, they offered him a full-time position as marketing coordinator, and he says it was truly a dream come true. His hobbies include studying French and Mandarin Chinese, as well as visiting other countries when he has the time.

When asked what his favorite part of his educational experience was, Brian admits it’s hard to choose, as he valued his time at UNCW just as much as his time at Kedge. However, he says, “My time at Kedge culminated into a wonderful cultural experience where I was able to create solid friendships with classmates from over 20 different countries all while learning a foreign language and studying in a truly international environment.”

Brian recently posted his application for French citizenship in January and hopes to have a favorable reply within the next eight months. “My true aspirations are to become an entrepreneur and own my own business while living in France. French citizenship would allow me the freedom to pursue my new venture without having to worry about an expiring residence visa.”

If any CSB students or alumni are considering embarking on a similar journey to Marseille, Brian says that he would be happy to assist – whether it be setting up a French bank account, processing a resident’s permit or finding accommodations. “It would be a pleasure to help fellow UNCW alumni.”

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