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Alumni Newsletter

Meinders School of Business: Accredited by AACSB International
(re)Meinders Newsletter
Thank you for your continued support of Meinders School of Business at Oklahoma City University. Here are some of the things we have been up to lately! 
Meinders School of Business Opens New Economic Centers
Dr. Jacob Dearmon, Dr. Russell Evans, Dr. Kyle Dean
Oklahoma City University's Meinders School of Business has opened three new centers dedicated to specific areas of economic research.

The Steven C. Agee Economic Research & Policy Institute now includes the Center for Economic Forecasting and Policy Analysis led by Executive Director Russell Evans, the Center for Native American and Urban Studies led by Kyle Dean and the Center for Data Analytics led by Jacob Dearmon. 
"The centers are dedicated to those domains that have been highly sought by the state and regional business community,"  Dean Steve Agee said. "They are a direct market response to an underserved need."  
The Center for Economic Forecasting and Policy Analysis  provides agnostic, data-driven research that supports the decision-making process of the region's business and policy leaders. Its areas of focus are economic and tax forecasting, policy analysis and regional economic development strategy.
The Center for Native American and Urban Studies provides research to support the growth and understanding of Native American business and industry. The center also works with city and state leaders to develop urban and regional policies that benefit citizens and support growth objectives.
The Center for Data Analytics was established to provide insights through customized analytic solutions that are adapted to each client's unique needs. Areas of focus include forecasting, spatial modeling, Monte Carlo analysis, optimization and machine learning. 
Steven C. Agee Economic Research & Policy Institute
Steven C. Agee Economic Research & Policy Institute
Meinders School of Business Announces Native American Enterprise Management Certificate Program to Launch in Spring 2016
Governor Anoatubby, Dean Agee, and Herman Meinders
Oklahoma City University and the Chickasaw Nation announced the launch of the Native American Enterprise Management Certificate Program to begin during the Spring 2016 semester.  The program is intended to be finished in one year and offers a multi-faceted curriculum focusing on case studies, real-time applied projects, and videos from actual industry executives and managers that educate with content based on topics Native American tribes have shared. 
"This new educational focus with an Oklahoma industry partner the caliber of the Chickasaw Nation continues Oklahoma City University's commitment to enhancing opportunities for business leaders across a wide array of industries to support the ever-changing business landscape in our state," said president Robert Henry.
Chickasaw Nation Governor Bill Anoatubby praised tribal leaders and Oklahoma City University on their recognition of the need and importance for developing a way to allow individuals to learn and gain experiential knowledge in the industry.  He said, "The Chickasaw Nation has a long-standing strategic partnership with OCU and the Meinders School of Business....This rigorous, new certification program will emphasize the importance of education programs based not simply in theoretical findings, but also in the practical application of human relations problem-solving, which is a critical component of the Chickasaw philosophy of enterprise management."
Dean Steve Agee of the Meinders School of Business expanded on the program saying, "This curriculum is rigorous, comprehensive and real-world based. Our hope is that it enhances the management capabilities of one our state's largest employers in various emerging industries."
Dr. Greve Appointed to Assistant Dean
Dr. Bob Greve
Dr. Bob Greve was recently promoted to Assistant Dean of the Meinders School of Business and will oversee assessment and assurance of learning.  
"The management and documentation of improving student learning has become all the more important,"  Dr. Greve said. "This is a continuous effort and there is always room for improvement."  He hopes to continue to improve student success through documenting and evaluating Meinders' strategic goals and plans.

Dr. Greve has been a beloved professor at Meinders for many years.  In 2004, Dr. Greve joined Meinders as a visiting professor and then advanced to associate professor, following the completion of his dissertation.  

Dr. Greve has been extremely involved in the growth of the Meinders School of Business, directing the Love's Entrepreneurship Center and most recently, named the Director of the Busey Institute for Enterprise and Leadership. Dr. Greve has directed events including Leadership Day & Entrepreneurship Day, as well as mentoring multiple teams to compete (and win) in the Governor's Cup.
Dr. Greve holds a BBA in Finance and an MBA from the Universtiy of Central Oklahoma, as well as a Ph.D in MIS from Oklahoma State University.
Our newest dean described a fond memory of when he took an undergraduate Governor's Cup team to Singapore to compete with 120 other teams from around the world.  The Meinders team placed second overall.  In celebration of the team's achievement, a Meinders alum living in Singapore took the victors out to eat at a fabulous restaurant atop a skyscraper.  There, undergraduate student, Timothy Harland, was able to show off his masterful piano skills.  "It was amazing to get to hear Timothy play.  I already knew he was a very bright business student, so it was just great to get to see his other talents. Coupled with the dinner, view, and success from earlier, it was just an amazing day." Dr. Greve said.

Congratulations, Dr. Greve! Thank you for all of your continuous hard work and dedication to the Meinders School of Business.

Hall of Honor
The Meinders School of Business held the 29th annual Oklahoma Commerce and Industry Hall of Honor Luncheon last month. The event received an unprecedented amount of support this year, which translates into substantial scholarship dollars for incoming students wishing to pursue a business degree at OCU.
Nancy Anthony, William Durrett, Linda Lambert, Bill Lance, and Ed Martin were among the recipients this year.
If you missed the luncheon, the acceptance videos are available online:
             Nancy Anthony: Lifetime Achievement Award - video
            William Durrett: Chairman's Award - video
            Linda Lambert: Entrepreneurial Spirit Award - video
            Bill Lance: Outstanding Achievement Award - video
            Ed Martin: President's Award - video
Click here to read more about this year's inductees and their contributions to Oklahoma and view  photos from the event. 
Meinders Hosts 4th Annual Alumni Homecoming Event at VAST
Harvey Mercer, '49 MSB Graduate and Dean Agee
The 4th Annual Alumni Reception held at Vast was a great success, bringing together alumni, faculty, staff, and friends all connected to the Meinders School of Business.   
It was wonderful to see a span of years between our recent graduates and those who have graduated quite some time ago, Dean Agee said.  Harvey Mercer, who graduated with a business degree 66 years ago, brought along his two great-granddaughters.  
Dean Steve Agee announced the Meinders School of Business 2015 Distinguished Alumni, Justin Briggs.  Justin received his MBA in 2010 and is currently serving as vice president, business development and operations at Accele BioPharma and Venture Partner at Accele Venture Partners.  In 2014, Justin was chosen to accompany representatives from Creative Oklahoma to the Creativity World Forum in Belgium.
Congratulations, Justin.  We wish you continued success! 
View photos from the event. 
Alex Epstein Presents at Meinder's Energy Conference 
New York Times bestselling author, Alex Epstein, visited Oklahoma City University to discuss his book, " The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels" at Meinders' annual Energy Conference.  Epstein is the president and founder of the Center for Industrial Progress, a for-profit think tank that aims to "inspire Americans to embrace industrial progress as a cultural ideal."
Epstein enjoys challenging the way people tend to think about the energy industry and fossil fuels by introducing the idea that fossil fuels are about maximizing human progress and improving lives.  All of these ideas can be found in his book "The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels."
Alumni Spotlight
Name:  James Nathan Johns
Year Graduated:  1991 & 1993
Degree Earned:  B.A.-Liberal Arts, and M.B.A.
Current Job Title:  Life Safety Code Supervisor
Tell us a little bit about what you're doing now. Where you live, family, hobbies etc.:
"I live in Warr Acres with my wife, Nicole Prieto Johns.  My son, Corbin Johns lives in Norman, son Steele Willison lives in Seattle, daughter Jasmine Willison lives in Monterey, California, son in law/daughter Tommy & Sasha Wagnon and two granddaughter's Lexi and Abigail live in Orange, CA. My sister/brother-in-law Cheryl & Jackie Hill, nephews: Lee, Colton, and Logan Hill live in Norman."
What did you do after you left MSB? 
"Went to work with the State of Oklahoma."
What's an aspect of MSB that has stuck with you? 
"Something that has stuck with me is that, with persistence and hard work, your efforts will generate great results"
Is there a lesson you learned at MSB that has served you well in your life/career? 
"Out of the many educational aspects I gained from attending MSB, one that stands out is the SWOT analysis. It is as important today as it was when I was first taught it at MSB." (SWOT analysis is a technique used to analyze the internal and external environments by observing strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats)
Do you have a favorite memory from MSB? 
"To know that OCU & MSB are under the great leadership of President Robert Henry and the many other talented leaders!"
What advice would you give to students who are currently still pursuing their degrees here at MSB? 
"Make the most of each of their courses, Make friends while at MSB, get to know their MSB professors, get involved on campus and travel when they have a chance."
Student Spotlight 
Name:  Devin Murphy
Year Graduating: December, 2015
Degree you're graduating with: BBA Marketing      

What is a favorite memory being a student at Meinders? 
"I really have too many to count, however, one of the most meaningful events was when I was encouraged by Dr. Guzak to attend the Women in Leadership Day event in 2014. At the event there was an opportunity for two audience members to participate in an activity with the key note speaker. I don't know what drove me to do so, but I volunteered. They brought me up on stage where I was able to talk about my anxiety about graduating and trying to find work in the film industry.  I guess I did something right because I caught the attention of former Lieutenant Governor, Jari Askins.  She asked to speak to me at the end of event so when everything was finishedI went over to meet her.  She told me about the Oklahoma Film and Music Office and put me in contact with Jill Simpson.  From there the rest is history, I interned for OFMO and LOVED it! I feel much more confident in going forward with my future and I truly feel I owe it all to Meinders."

What is your favorite Meinders event? 
"Women in Leadership Day!  We have so many great events, however, I think WIL is something truly special.  It is inspiring to hear women leaders' stories and how they have flourished in their industries, whether those fields be male dominated or not." 

Tell us about your experience as a student employee in Meinders. 
"I have worked for Maranda Kitchingham for the past year.  My duties have spanned the gamut from managing the coffee bar, composing and designing the Meinders newsletter, speaking to prospective students and orchestrating our MAC and DECA events.  Since beginning my work here I have seen an immense improvement in my communication skills as well as event planning and organization.  I have learned the invaluable skill of being thoughtful in all forms of communication as well how to learn things quickly and not be afraid to ask for help.  Plus the environment in the Dean's suite is pretty fun, so I have greatly enjoyed my time here!"

What are your plans after graduation? 
"I am currently planning on taking the next half year off to travel and see the world, however, I am also looking into a variety of employment opportunities in the film industry for when that time is up.  I have the option of possibly moving to New Orleans, or even further away over seas."

What advice would you give to a incoming freshman next year? 
"First (and you've probably heard it a million times) get involved! I know it is cliche but it really is the best thing to do.  Join a club like DECA, Toastmasters, or the Investment Club.  Go to the events Meinders puts on.  These opportunities are put here for you and they can often give you a richer experience and a wider array of resources and knowledge. You learn a lot in the classroom, you learn even more by doing.  Getting a student job on campus is also a fantastic way to get involved! "

For a chance to have your picture in the
 newsletter, be sure you tag #OCUMSB on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram! 

This month's picture comes to us from Meinders alumn @manish_dhondi , who is showing his support for Oklahoma State University following their homecoming tragedy.  Our continued thoughts and support go out to them.
If you have any comments, stories, or information to contribute to this newsletter, please contact Devin Murphy at or 405-208-5538.