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 (April 2018):

Dean Robert BurrusMessage from the Dean 

Dear Friends of the Cameron School of Business,

Another Business Week is in the books! As has been tradition in the past 36 years, Business Week 2018 was, once again, a huge success.

Cameron brought in more than 200 speakers, sharing their knowledge and experiences in business, marketing, entrepreneurship, information technology and more. To kick off Business Week 2018, Dr. Yaron Brook, the host of the nationally syndicated "Yaron Brook Show" and renowned best-selling author, was invited to speak on the "Pursuit of Wealth" as part of the BB&T Center for Global Capitalism and Ethics speaker series. Cameron was excited to welcome two prominent keynote speakers. Cameron's own alumni and member of UNCW’s Board of Trustees, Maurice Smith, President/CEO of Local Government Federal Credit Union, had just returned from a one-on-one meeting on credit unions with President Donald Trump. Smith shared his thoughts on “Commodity Versus Career." Our second keynote speaker, Frank Bisignano, Chairman/CEO of First Data Corporation, spoke via a video conferencing arrangement– a first for Business Week! Bisignano was scheduled to appear in person but was unable to travel due to the fourth nor’easter to hit the Northeast in March. Despite the change in plans, Bisignano’s address on "Diversity and Inclusion: Building Blocks for a Better Business" was well-received by those in attendance.

It is Cameron's faculty that gives Cameron students a unique business school experience through their dedicated teaching and innovative research. We highlight one such professor and UNCW’s regional economist, Dr. Adam Jones, in this issue. To see more of Cameron’s faculty, visit WE ARE UNCW, where Dr. Mark Pelletier, Dr. Chris Sibona, and Dr. Steve Harper are highlighted!

Also in this issue, Cameron introduces its new online M.S. Finance and Investment Management, which is the only online master’s degree of its kind offered in North Carolina. This program is designed for working professionals who currently work or wish to work in the fields of financial management, investment banking, or investment management. The MSF is one of three new online programs Cameron will be launching this fall.

In order to assist the Cameron School of Business in its support of the sales profession, UNCW and the Cameron School of Business established the UNCW Center for Sales Excellence and Customer Delight. Some of the activities of this new center will include advanced sales classes, mentoring, role-playing, a sales team, a career fair, public lectures and research.

Lastly, we hope you enjoy reading about a May 2018 graduate’s journey from admittance to CSB to landing a coveted job with a prominent company. We introduce you to Jessica Ortiz.

We bring you these updates in hopes that you continue to be proud of your alma mater and will want to be involved with your time, talents and treasure!

Rob Burrus

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M.S. Finance and Investment ManagementA New Specialized Master's Degree – Pursuing the CFA Charter

by Nivine Richie, Ph.D., CFA, Chair - CSB Department of Economics & Finance

Last year, on the first Saturday of June, more than 150,000 people sat for CFA exams across the globe.

That’s a record—up about 10 percent from the year before and more than double the number of candidates who took the exam in June 2007. The results are in: 43 percent passed level I, 47 percent passed level II, and 54 percent passed level III.

Known as “the finance industry’s toughest exam,” the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA®) designation is described by the Financial Times as the “coveted designation” awarded to those who pass all three exams and have four years of relevant work experience. Those who succeed join a network of over 140,000 charter holders in more than 150 countries in positions such as financial analysts, bankers and investment portfolio managers.

The Master of Science in Finance and Investment Management (MSF) at UNCW’s Cameron School of Business, launching fall 2018, will offer students the opportunity to gain a specialized finance graduate degree, as well as the opportunity to prepare for the CFA exams.

Designed for the working professional, the program is fully online and can be completed in one calendar year or at a pace that allows students to balance work, home and school responsibilities. 

Preparing Candidates for the Future

The courses are designed to prepare students for the rapidly changing landscape of financial services, one of the most highly regulated and scrutinized industries in the U.S. and abroad. The online courses cover traditional graduate finance course work in equity analysis, fixed income and financial statement analysis, and emphasize the application of financial theory to the practice of investment management.
Graduates of the program will be able to apply:

  • Quantitative methods, economics, financial reporting and analysis, and corporate finance to investment management
  • Advanced investment tools to the valuation of equity, fixed-income, derivative, and alternative investments
  • High ethical standards to investment management, consistent with the CFA Institute Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct

Jobs Outlook

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the anticipated growth in financial services jobs is above average.


2014 Median Pay per year

2014 Number of Jobs

Job Outlook Growth, 2014-24

Employment Change 2014-24

Financial Analysts





Financial Managers





Personal Financial Advisors





Securities, Commodities, and Financial Services Sales Agents





Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Job prospects for financial services in North Carolina are promising, with several occupations in finance showing more job openings than job candidates.

From NC Works Online, job openings outnumber potential candidates in positions such as:

  • Financial quantitative analysts
  • Personal financial advisors
  • Risk management specialists
  • Treasurers and controllers

Is Graduate School Right for You?

As a bond trader in 1993 working for a regional dealer bank in south Florida, I was choosing between graduate school and the CFA designation. I didn’t know of any online university graduate degrees at the time, and I couldn’t leave my full-time work to go back to school. So, I began the three-year self-study journey towards the CFA designation instead.
If online graduate school had been available to me, I would have gladly sought an MSF while pursuing the CFA charter. The three years of self-study was challenging; I put in hundreds of hours preparing for each exam while working full-time. The investment paid off when I was awarded the CFA charter, and continues to pay off as I enjoy the privilege of working with charter holders from around the globe.
Today, students deciding between graduate school and the CFA designation no longer have to choose. The Master of Science in Finance and Investment Management delivers a traditional M.S. Finance degree that is aligned with the CFA Candidate Body of Knowledge.
To learn more or receive updates about Cameron’s new Master of Science in Finance and Investment Management degree program, visit our website or contact program director Dr. William Sackley at

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Dr. Adam JonesA Closer Look at Cameron's Regional Economist

Dr. Adam Jones, Associate Professor of Economics, is a highly interactive and innovative teacher. He is able to teach large sections of introductory economics just as effectively as he can mentor students individually. Students describe him as "relatable," "memorable" and "engaging." He has the ability to make difficult concepts accessible by relating them to everyday situations using hands-on practices.

In addition to his role within CSB as an associate professor, Dr. Jones serves as the regional economist for the Swain Center for Professional and Executive Education. William "Woody" Hall, Ph.D., was the senior economist and a professor of economics at UNCW for 41 years until his retirement in June of 2015. Following his departure Dr. Jones took on the position of regional economist, and he continues to add a great deal of energy and enthusiasm to the role. He brings a unique background in economic development, university outreach via the University of Georgia’s Carl Vinson Institute of Government, and the formal training of a Ph.D. economist.

Providing economic services is an important aspect of the Swain Center's mission. Dr. Jones is deeply engaged in the community. He is an enjoyable and knowledgeable speaker and he is often called upon to provide economic forecasts at events throughout the year. Organizations also hire him to provide economic impact studies to demonstrate their contributions to economic development in the region. Just as Dr. Jones is able to do with his students, he makes complicated information easy to understand through good humor and analogies. Among other projects including identifying the economic impact of The Avenue Development and working with the university to quantify its economic impact on New Hanover County, Dr. Jones and his regional economics class have partnered with the Cape Fear Craft Beer Alliance to examine the economic impact of craft breweries on southeastern North Carolina.

In addition, Dr. Jones and the Swain Center partner with the Wilmington Chamber of Commerce to produce an "economic scorecard," which compares Wilmington’s economic development potential to that of similar cities. The scorecard provides data for a discussion about growth and objective information on how the city is doing.

As passionate about research as he is about teaching, Dr. Jones has broad research interests ranging from regional economics to pedagogy. He has been published in journals such as Economic Development Quarterly and the Journal of Economics and Finance, among many others. He actively involves students in his research through honors theses and class projects. Most recently, his honors students were among seven economics and finance students selected to present their research at the Dallas Federal Reserve Undergraduate Research Conference.

Dr. Jones is exceptionally dedicated to students and to the university community. Annually, he helps to direct a Fed Challenge student team. The Fed Challenge is a competition created to enhance students’ understanding of the Federal Reserve System and how it formulates and implements monetary policy. The team creates a presentation that assesses financial, economic and inflation trends as well as advocates monetary policy actions before a panel of judges. He serves as the co-coordinator for the Economics Teaching Workshop and is a member of the advisory board for the BB&T Center for Global Capitalism and Ethics. Previously, he helped lead a student group to NYC and has served in many other capacities, both formally and informally as a mentor to students and faculty. Currently, Dr. Jones provides mentoring and support for two undergraduate economic fellows who are working to develop a business confidence survey and to make economic data more accessible on Swain’s website. Under the guidance of Dr. Jones, this is proving to be very beneficial for the center.

"We are fortunate to have Dr. Jones engage with the community around economic forecasts and impacts," Swain Center Director Laura Lunsford said. "He is a knowledgeable and entertaining speaker who cares deeply about our region's economic development."

To review some of Dr. Jones' recent region development research, visit

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Students, faculty, staff and community members at the Launch Reception for the Sales Center on March 20CSB Marketing Department Announces New Center for Sales Excellence and Customer Delight

UNCW Cameron School of Business' Center for Sales Excellence and Customer Delight, officially launched in March of 2018, was created to develop students' ability to think and work collaboratively by teaching, coaching and pushing students to operate with a “win-win” mentality. By offering a variety of events hosted by faculty, the business community and sales professionals, this center will offer Cameron School of Business students a competitive advantage in acquiring jobs and internships.

This center aligns perfectly with the goals of the school to provide myriad opportunities for our students, faculty and external stakeholders in the business community, in particular the sales community.

The marketing department offers a concentration in professional selling to more than 150 students. The newly created center will allow for mentoring and role-play opportunities with sales professionals for these students. Sales professionals will be able to collaborate with faculty and students to conduct research relative to their industries. The center boasts an advisory board of sales professionals from many different industries and local companies to guide curriculum, internships, full-time employment and other issues to foster even deeper relationships between UNCW Cameron School of Business and the business community.

Dr. Vince Howe, Associate Professor of Marketing, was appointed as the center’s first director. Dr. Howe hopes to provide various opportunities for the professional selling students, including participating in sales competitions, both regionally and nationally. UNCW is already listed as one of the “Top Universities for Professional Sales Education” by the Sales Education Foundation.

Dr. Howe is currently in the process of seeking membership in the University Sales Center Alliance for UNCW. The mission of the USCA is "to advance the selling profession through setting and monitoring sales program standards, sharing best practice, enhancing sales curricula, and preparing students for a career in sales." Currently, there are 46 other members of the USCA and only two of them are in North Carolina. Membership in the USCA will add value to students, faculty and the business community through the association with top sales programs around the country.

The networking opportunities for faculty and students in the sales area will allow for enhanced teaching and research ideas. Additionally, through the Center for Sales Excellence and Customer Delight and USCA membership, the marketing department will be able to provide the opportunity for students to earn the Certified Sales Student certification.

Dr. Howe’s plan for next year’s activities includes an internal sales contest as preparation for regional PSE sales contests, career meetings for professional sales students and relevant advisory board members, guest speakers from the sales profession and trips to training centers at North Carolina firms.

For more information about how to become involved with the Center for Sales Excellence and Customer Delight, please contact Dr. Vince Howe at 910.962.3882 or

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Jessica Ortiz, Class of 2018Shaping Career Opportunities of Tomorrow through the CSB Experience Today

How do you figure out what you want to do with the rest of your life… or at least determine what you might want to study and what you want to do when you first leave college? For CSB senior Jessica Ortiz, the answer was a combination of seeking guidance from trusted professionals and simply exploring and experiencing some of what Cameron School offers to students who want to find their passions while also gaining valuable experiences for their resume. After graduation in May, Jessica will be starting a full-time position at SAP as a SuccessFactors Associate Program Execution Lead. This is an exceptional opportunity rarely afforded to new graduates, especially at the undergraduate level. Jessica’s ambition and desire to fully invest in her college experience helped her tremendously in her post-college career search.

SAP is a multinational software corporation that makes enterprise software to manage business operations and customer relations, with the U.S. headquarters based in Newtown, PA. Prior to investigating internship and job opportunities with SAP, Jessica was not unfamiliar with the company. Jessica’s mother works for SAP in the procurement software division. However, pursuing a career with SAP was something Jessica decided to do after a good deal of independent exploration into her interests. Jessica found that she thoroughly enjoyed her first project management course with Dr. Drew Rosen and she felt strongly that she needed to further delve into the project management discipline to determine her next steps.

In her junior year, Jessica chose to participate in the Prague Consulting Project. This trip/class combination offered through the CSB gives business school students exposure to a real-world problem with a real company. Jessica served as the project manager on the team traveling to Prague; she was responsible for the coordination of work streams to develop and present marketing strategies for Budweiser Budar in the Czech Republic. This unique and valuable learning opportunity provided Jessica with both practical experience in the area of project management and a clearer picture about the types of professional roles she was interested in pursuing.

In addition to her participation in the consulting project, Jessica regularly sought professional council from her Cameron Executive Network mentor, Arthur Kareff. He offered encouragement, guidance and advice about her next steps with a possible internship. Kareff assisted in refining Jessica’s resume, and later on, as she readied herself for an interview with SAP, he set up several mock interviews to help prepare her for the real thing. Kareff was not surprised to learn of Jessica’s job offer, as he believes she possesses the skills to shape a very bright future career.

"Jessica has been a delight to mentor. She values guidance, is intelligent, thoughtful and understands the critical path to success," he said.

Last summer, Jessica worked as an intern in the SuccessFactors HR software division within SAP. She immersed herself in the SAP culture and gained experience as a part of a project management team for internal operations in the Strategic Program Execution Office. The experience was overwhelmingly positive and mutually beneficial. While working on site, Jessica received high compliments in the form of a company praise award, and was so successful in her internship role that at the end of the summer the internship was extended into the school year. Jessica continues to maintain the high expectations of her supervisor from a distance and works remotely with a company laptop.

When a full-time position on the team for which Jessica was interning became available, she was excited about the opportunity to apply. She knew, however, that this role was one that was typically available to those who had been with the company for much longer than she had. This was not an entry-level opening, but with the encouragement of those around her at the company and within Cameron, she chose to move forward. When SAP selected her for the Associate Program Execution Lead, Jessica enthusiastically accepted the position. Her determination and dedication to her work certainly paid off. However, she also credits Cameron with her recent successes.

"Cameron prepared me well and gave me so many of the resources needed to successfully attain an internship with SAP. I attribute my opportunity to work for SAP much to my time at the CSB," she said. "The experiences I gained from participating in the Prague trip, the classes I took with instructors who invested in me and in my studies, and my participation in the Cameron Executive Network all worked to my benefit as a prepared for my future. I am thankful for the full experience."

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