Dean’s Blog

Journey to the Middle East

Published March 5, 2018 at 8:03 AM PST

I just returned from a trip to Kuwait and Saudi Arabia to visit SU alumni in the two countries.  We have about 60 alums in Kuwait and 160 in Saudi Arabia.  As for future alums from there, we currently have 57 Saudis studying with us and (only) two students from Kuwait.  An important component of our trip was to learn how to improve on that!

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INRIX CEO on the Future of Transportation

Published February 2, 2018 at 5:02 PM PST


Bryan Mistele, CEO of INRIX, was the featured speaker in the Albers Executive Speaker Series on February 1st.  INRIX is a leading provider of real-time transportation information, connected car services and analytics worldwide.   If you are using a traffic app on your smart phone, the data is likely to be coming from INRIX, located right here in Seattle.  The title of his presentation was, “The Future of Transportation: The impact Autonomous, Connected, Electric & Shared vehicles will have on society.”

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Albers Faculty Honored with Endowed Professorships

Published November 26, 2017 at 2:11 PM PST

Two Albers faculty members were recognized for their outstanding achievements with appointments to endowed professorships.  At an installation ceremony on November 17th, Dr. Jot Yau, Professor of Finance, was recognized as the fifth holder of the George Albers Professorship in Business.  Dr. Tina Zamora, Associate Professor of Accounting, was introduced as the third holder of the David E. Tinius Endowed Professorship in Accounting.

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Venture Capitalist Out to Beat Economic Inequality

Published November 8, 2017 at 5:11 PM PST


Venture capitalist, entrepreneur, and social activist Nick Hanauer joined the Albers Executive Speaker Series on November 7th to speak on economic inequality and its effect on the social fabric of the US.  He argued that inequality is polarizing our society and too many are being left behind.

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Published October 20, 2017 at 1:10 PM PDT

Many of our students are concerned about DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals), either because it affects them directly or because they know someone who is affected.  Our President, Fr. Steve Sundborg, has addressed the issue, as have other campus leaders, and I want to add my voice to theirs.

I do not support the rescinding of DACA and am very hopeful that legislation will be approved between now and March to reinstate the program.  Unfortunately, there are no guarantees this will happen.  The university has made it clear we will support them in every way we can.   We have also made it clear that should ICE agents visit campus, we will do everything we can do within the law to protect the rights of students.  I do not expect such visits to take place, but I cannot guarantee that.

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Nobel Prize Winner Advocates for Social Business

Published October 13, 2017 at 10:10 AM PDT


Nobel Peace Prize recipient Muhammad Yunus spoke at Seattle University on October 12th about his latest book, A World of Three Zeros, The New Economics of Zero Poverty, Zero Unemployment, and Zero Net Carbon Emissions.

The Bangladesh-based creator of microfinance has long argued that the capitalist system is imperfect and can be fixed to yield better lives for the poor.  As Dr. Yunus said last night, we have a system where, “the more you have, the more you get,” referencing the enormous inequality of income and wealth that results from unrestrained capitalism.  The solution is to get more resources into the hands of the poor, giving them more opportunity.

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MOD Pizza: Culture Creates Purpose

Published October 12, 2017 at 11:10 AM PDT


When Ally and Scott Svenson started MOD Pizza in 2008, they wanted to create an organization with a distinctive people-first culture that met a market need – fast-casual family-friendly food that happened to be pizza.  Today, MOD has 265 stores across 24 states and the UK, employing over 5500 “Mod Squaders.”  The brand has been named the fastest growing restaurant chain in the US for the last two years, and recently landed in the #2 spot on the Puget Sound Business Journal’s “Fastest Growing Private Companies” list. On October 11th, the Svenson’s joined the Albers Executive Speaker Series to explain their journey in progress with MOD pizza.   They are the first husband-wife team to participate in the Speaker Series, now in its 16th year! :}

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Meeting Mother Teresa

Published September 29, 2017 at 12:09 PM PDT


At Seattle University’s Mass of the Holy Spirit on September 28th, Fr. Steve Sundborg, SJ, President of SU, reminded us that this month is the twentieth anniversary of Mother Teresa’s death.  I had the opportunity to meet Mother Teresa in December, 1996, which was just a few months before she passed away.

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A Lesson From Totality

Published August 28, 2017 at 7:08 AM PDT

As an economist, I am always analyzing things at the margin. I am always doing the cost-benefit analysis. I am always measuring the marginal benefit against the marginal cost.

Along with many others, I headed to Oregon on August 21st to observe the full eclipse that went streaking across the US that day. I learned a valuable lesson from Totality. And what it taught me was the difference that 1% can make.

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23rd Annual IAJBS World Forum

Published July 26, 2017 at 8:07 AM PDT

The 23rd Annual International Association of Jesuit Business Schools (IAJBS) World Forum took place in Namur, Belgium from July 16-18. Including myself, there were six attendees from Albers and one faculty member from the School of New and Continuing Studies. The event brought together 130 faculty from 19 different countries, 5 different continents, and 50 different universities and institutes. The 24th World Forum will take place at Seattle University, July 22-25, 2018! Mark your calendars!

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