UT Students to Work Historic Super Bowl 50

Big-Orange-Combine-2015--01-WEBKNOXVILLE—Twelve lucky students from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, will attend Super Bowl 50 and the historic showdown on football’s biggest stage between the Denver Broncos and Carolina Panthers.

The Big Orange Combine, now in its 12th year, involves students majoring in communications, marketing, human resources and sports management. The students will travel to San Francisco Feb. 3-8 to work the Super Bowl and other events leading up the most-watched television program in America. The game is set for Sunday, Feb. 7, at 6:30 p.m.

“This is an educational networking week that exposes the students to executives in sports, event management and touring companies,” said Debbie Mackey, director of the Human Resource Management master’s program in the Haslam College of Business and adviser for the group. “The students will meet with sports professionals, tour Google and interact with numerous executives.”

Students will also have the opportunity to meet executives with the San Francisco Giants and work the NFL Experience, pro football’s interactive on-site theme park, which highlights the sport’s history including the Super Bowl.

“Game day is an amazing experience for these students to work with event management and fans and experience a rare behind-the-scenes look into the Super Bowl,” said Mackey.

Of course, the students are excited for the chance to see three former Vols playing in the game, particularly the Bronco wearing no. 18.

“We get to be in the presence of Peyton Manning,” said Christine Austin. “It will be a true honor to represent his alma mater at Super Bowl 50. I hope that we represent UT as well as he has over the years.”

This year’s Big Orange Combine includes four UT student-athletes—Mack Crowder and Kyler Kerbyson from football, Alexis Dempsey from volleyball and Megan Hatcher from soccer.

Brian Russell, director of student-athlete academic support services

of UT’s Thornton Athletics Student Life Center, will advise and work alongside the students.

Team members include:

  • Mack Crowder, a graduate student in human resource management from Bristol, Tennessee.
  • Alexis Dempsey, a graduate student in communication studies from Palm Springs, California.
  • Stan Norris, a graduate student in sports management from Knoxville.
  • Kyler Kerbyson, a graduate student in sports management from Knoxville.
  • James Dugan, a graduate student in sports management from Johnson City, Tennessee.
  • Olanda James, a graduate student in sports management from Knoxville.
  • Christine Austin, a graduate student in human resource management from Knoxville.
  • Megan Hatcher, a senior in marketing from Knoxville.
  • Emily Corley, a senior in sports management from Hendersonville, Tennessee.
  • Julie Fish, a junior in communication studies from Franklin, Tennessee.
  • Sam Gilliam, a senior in sports management from Kingsport, Tennessee.
  • Christine Steffen, a graduate student in sports management from Carmel, Indiana.

“This game is very special to us,” said Mackey. “Peyton Manning is the best quarterback to play the game and he is a Vol for Life in every way. He supports UT in so many ways, and we are honored to be at the 50th Super Bowl while Peyton is there. We will be sad if this is his last game but hope he might possibly return in some capacity to UT.”

Several news outlets have interviewed students regarding the trip, including:

WATE: http://wate.com/2016/02/02/ut-students-heading-to-work-at-super-bowl-50/

WVLT: http://www.local8now.com/content/news/UT-program-offers-students-a-chance-to-go-to-Super-Bowl-367396641.html

WBIR: http://www.wbir.com/news/u-t-group-going-to-super-bowl-50/30649308



Tyra Haag (865-974-5460, tyra.haag@tennessee.edu)

Debbie Mackey (865-974-7014, dmackey@utk.edu)

Posted in 2014

Autry Appointed Department Head for Marketing and Supply Chain

Chad Autry

Chad Autry now leads the Department of Marketing and Supply Chain Management at the Haslam College of Business. His role as department head is effective on Feb. 1.

Autry, the William J. Taylor Professor of Supply Chain Management, sees continued growth for the department and rising prominence within its fields of expertise. “The faculty of both of our programs, as well as our staff, are as good as you will find anywhere,” Autry said. “It’s not a surprise that the students we turn out are helping us rise to the top of company and media lists. Stay tuned — this department is poised to do many more great things.”

Autry succeeds Mark Moon, who served in the position for five years. Moon will return to his role as the Flaskerud Faculty Fellow.

“The department is doing so well on so many fronts thanks to Mark’s passion and vision,” said Autry. “He’s recruited amazing people and has our international recognition on a massive upswing. I’m excited about our strengths and the strategies he has put in place have us ready to act in many unique ways that benefit the world by tying together our marketing and supply chain perspectives.”

Autry joined Haslam in 2010 after teaching at Oklahoma City University, Texas Christian University and Bradley University in Peoria, Ill. He has been published extensively in premier academic and national journals for his research on socially responsible interfirm and interfunctional relationships. He is the outgoing Editor in Chief of the Journal of Supply Chain Management, serves on several editorial boards within the field and has worked with professional, civic and governmental organizations on supply chain improvement.

Posted in 2016 | Tagged , ,

Social Issue Investing Does Not Increase Value According to UT Study

Tracie Woidtke

Tracie Woidtke

Environmental, social and governance (ESG) investing is associated with lower shareholder value, according to a new study by Tracie Woidtke, head of the finance department at the University of Tennessee’s Haslam College of Business.

While examining the role of state and municipal pension funds as activist investors, Woidtke found the S&P 500 index firms targeted with social-issue proposals by the New York state pension fund had a 21 percent lower firm value, and a 91 percent lower industry-adjusted firm value, than all other firm-years in her sample.

“Shareholders see little benefit from focus on issues like political spending, employment rights or environmental sustainability within a company,” said Woidtke. “This has become a really hot topic with the current focus on ESG investing.”

The Manhattan Institute and the Center for Competitive Capital Markets (part of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce) invited Woidtke to present her research at recent meetings. Both entities are monitoring the potential negative consequences of ESG shareholder activism to taxpayers, public pension fund beneficiaries and firms.

Woidtke’s research demonstrates an overall negative relationship between a firm’s value and shareholder activism on social policy issues. The data also confirms a previous study of Woidtke’s that demonstrates shareholder activism relating to corporate governance is not associated with decreased value. Firms that undergo shareholder activism focusing on poor firm performance generally have higher value.

“Shareholder activists encouraging their fellow shareholders to withhold votes toward a director’s election expresses dissatisfaction with management performance and helps support the vitality of a business,” said Woidtke.

However, when public pension funds lobby companies as government entities with political motivations instead of shareholders advocating corporate profitability, a firm’s value is lower in the stock market.

Woidtke’s paper was released during the Manhattan Institute’s fifth annual Proxy Monitor conference, at which she was one of two featured panelists. Woidtke is the David E. Sharp/Home Federal Bank of Tennessee Professor in Banking and Finance at the Haslam College of Business.


Story Highlights:
Firms targeted with social-issue proposals have 21% lower value
Political shareholder activism hurts public pension fund beneficiaries

Posted in 2016 | Tagged , , , , , ,

Associate Dean Ranft to Join NC State, Noble Fills Interim New Position


Annette L. Ranft, senior associate dean of academic affairs and the Reagan Professor of Business at the University of Tennessee’s Haslam College of Business, has been named the Stephen P. Zelnak Jr. Dean of North Carolina State University’s Poole College of Management. The new appointment is effective July 1, 2016.

Ranft joined Haslam in 2011 as the associate dean of academic programs and subsequently became the college’s senior associate dean. She helped reconstitute the Dean’s Faculty Advisory Council and launch the college’s strategic planning process. She also served as chief architect of the new departmental funding and graduate funding models.

“I feel privileged to have been part of the Haslam College of Business and the tremendous growth it has experienced over the last five years,” said Ranft. “I’m so proud of the path that the college is on, and I cannot wait to see it prosper even more.”

Dean Steve Mangum said that Ranft has been integral to Haslam’s rise and has helped guide its strategic forethought.

“Her impact on the college has been profound,” Mangum said. “I first met Annette in the dean’s search process. My assessment of her capabilities and what could be accomplished as a team were important factors in my decision to join UT. Working with her over these three years has exceeded even those lofty expectations.”

Haslam will restructure its leadership upon Ranft’s departure to form a new position—associate dean for research and faculty. Charlie Noble, the Proffitt’s Professor of Marketing at Haslam, will hold the new post in the interim while a formal search is conducted.

Noble currently serves as Haslam’s doctoral programs coordinator and the Marketing Ph.D. program director. He also is associated with the Anderson Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation as a Research Council member. Noble joined the Haslam faculty in 2011. Previously, he was a faculty member of the business school at University of Mississippi, where he directed the MBA and Ph.D. programs from 2004 to 2009.

Posted in 2014

Haslam Director Honored by Greater Knoxville Business Journal

Tyvi Small, director of diversity and community relations at the Haslam College of Business, has been selected as one of the Greater Knoxville Business Journal’s 40 under Forty.

Small was recognized for his commitment to inclusion within Haslam as well as for empowering young people from diverse backgrounds in the community at large.

“I would hope that the impact that I’m having is one of hope and belief — that people who didn’t think they could, now think they can,” Small told the Knoxville Business Journal. “By creating opportunities for an individual, hopefully, it helps create an opportunity for their family and, hopefully, it changes generations.”

The Business Education for Talented Students (BETS) program, launched in 2008, has given more than 150 high school students an opportunity to experience the world of business first-hand in Haslam’s facilities each summer. He also has strengthened the college’s partnerships with community and business leaders to facilitate career-building opportunities through his involvement with Leadership Knoxville.

Each year 40 under Forty selects a group of young leaders promoting growth and change in Knoxville. The program seeks to highlight individuals in a breadth of career paths and industry fields representing the area’s business community.

You can access Small’s full feature on the Knoxville Business Journal’s website.

Haslam alumni who were honored include:

Brad Carraway (HCB ‘99, ProMBA ’04)

Matt Daniels (HCB ’00)

Jack Davidson (HCB ‘03, MAcc ’05)

Shannon Driver (ProMBA ’11)

Jack Holland (HCB ’03)

Rob Petrone (ProMBA ’11)

Kerry Speth (MAcc ’10)

Posted in 2014

Haslam One of Princeton Review’s Best Business Schools

The Haslam College of Business MBA program fared well in Princeton Review’s The Best 295 Business Schools: 2016 Edition.

“Since the ranking criteria is based on student feedback, it gives a strong picture of the impact we are making on graduates’ lives,” said Trent Thurman, executive director of graduate programs. “It validates that we are delivering an effective program that is valued by both students and employers.”

The guide’s student surveys gave Haslam’s academic experience and the quality and accessibility of its professors ratings above 85. The results also highlight the relevance of course material in the full-time program.

“Professors continue to remain active in their previous fields, so they continue to infuse current lessons learned from industry into their classes,” said one student. “They teach you skills that you can use in the real world.”

Haslam’s career rating was a 94, with a job placement within three months of graduation at 91 percent and an average base salary of more than $75,000.

“[Faculty] are very active in helping find internships as well as providing interview prep and resume writing assistance,” said one student. “They provide a lot of networking lunches, dinners and other opportunities as well as interesting speakers like the CEO of Wal-Mart.”

The guide noted that 25 to 30 percent of the full-time MBA class is international providing “diversity that may be surprising to some,” but that was highly valued by students.

Princeton Review analyzes data from surveys of 22,000 students and administrators to create its annual guide. The full guide can be accessed via its website.

Posted in 2014

College benefactor honored with national philanthropy award

James A. Haslam II (’52) will join a select group of business and civic leaders in North America next year when he receives the 2016 Horatio Alger Award. The award has been presented annually since 1947 to recognized leaders who have succeeded, despite facing adversity, and who are committed to both philanthropy and higher education.

Haslam, a former vice chair of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Board of Trustees, is a UT Distinguished Alumnus and former Vol football captain. Haslam founded the Pilot Corp. LLC, which is now Pilot Flying J. Pilot Flying J is the largest operator of travel centers and travel plazas in North America and one of the largest privately held companies in the United States. A dedicated alumnus, Haslam and his wife, Natalie, have made multiple donations to the university and its academic and athletic programs. In 2014, three generations of the Haslam family recognized him with a $50 million gift to his alma mater. In recognition of this gift, the Board of Trustees named the Haslam College of Business in his honor.

“As a respected veteran, savvy entrepreneur and generous philanthropist, Mr. Haslam’s life deeply reflects the principles of Horatio Alger,” said Byron Trott, president and CEO, Horatio Alger Association and 2011 Horatio Alger Award recipient. “Like many of our scholars, Mr. Haslam was the first person in his family to attend college, and with hard work and great determination, he became extraordinarily successful–both professionally and personally. I am pleased to welcome him as a member of the Horatio Alger Association.”

Haslam expressed his support for the Horatio Alger Association, which through its members, aims to educate young people about the limitless opportunities afforded to them by the free enterprise system.

“As the first in my family to pursue and achieve a college degree, I would have never imagined that I would be inducted into such an esteemed organization,” Haslam said. “I only hope that my experience and mentorship will help these promising young scholars realize their true potential and achieve their own dreams of a higher education.”

Horatio Alger Association: https://www.horatioalger.org/

Haslam College of Business: http://haslam.utk.edu/

Posted in 2014