Contributed by Drew Rosen, Business Week Chair and Lily Pezzullo-Frank, Business Week Coordinator.
When the pandemic struck in March of 2020, Cameron School of Business faculty and UNCW pivoted quickly to on-line delivery of classes. Business Week, an event that links CSB alumni and our business community to current students, was unfortunately, canceled. This event welcomes hundreds of people to campus for three days of lectures, networking events, and presentations. Fast forward to 2021. As we all delt with the effects of the Pandemic, out of an abundance of caution for our students/faculty and the community at large, Business Week 2021 went totally virtual. In the 39-year history of the CSB premier event, this was the first time we strayed from tradition.
This year, hundreds of students attended our three keynote addresses as well as numerous individual sessions coordinated by individual departments each day on Zoom and Canvas, a virtual educational platform. Dr. Burt Folsom, Distinguished Fellow of Hillsdale College and Professor Emeritus and author of Myth of the Robber Barons, presented for the Cameron School of Business’ BB&T Lecture series economic history and how the United States became a leading powerhouse. CSB Alumni, Darion Jeralds- Strategic Sourcing & Materials Leader, Chief Diversity Officer, GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy – spoke about the key features of what makes an effective leader. CSB Alumna, Melissa Phillippi – CEO and President of Performance Culture – closed the virtual event with a presentation on entrepreneurship.
In hosting a scaled back version of a widely attended event, the Business Week committee learned important new lessons on how to deliver our premier event to a diverse population without the need of face-to-face interaction. While we intend to return to our traditional networking events soon, these lessons will be used to continue to improve future Business Weeks as we move forward.
Thank you to all that attended the virtual events and to those that provided cutting edge education that CSB is known for delivering. We look forward to being back in person for Business Week in 2022.
Robert T. Burrus, Jr., Ph.D., is the dean of the Cameron School of Business at the University of North Carolina Wilmington, named in June 2015. Burrus joined the UNCW faculty in 1998. Prior to his current position, Burrus was interim dean, associate dean of undergraduate studies and the chair of the department of economics and finance. Burrus earned a Ph.D. and a master’s degree in economics from the University of Virginia and a bachelor’s degree in mathematical economics from Wake Forest University. The Cameron School of Business has approximately 90 full-time faculty members and 30 administrative and staff members. The AACSB-accredited business school currently enrolls approximately 2,600 undergraduate students in three degree programs and 750 graduate students in four degree programs. The school also houses the prestigious Cameron Executive Network, a group of more than 200 retired and practicing executives that provide one-on-one mentoring for Cameron students. To learn more about the Cameron School of Business, please visit http://csb.uncw.edu/. Questions and comments can be sent to [email protected].
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