7 Oct

Fun times at Happy Hour

It was an evening of fun, fellowship, good food and drink, a reunion of sorts for MBA alumni who recently graduated to re-connect with some of their classmates who are still pressing forward to finish.  Bones Grille was a popular place to be on that particular Friday night and the atmosphere was lively.  With each arrival there were hearty welcomes and congratulations for the newest graduates.  IMG_1420The conversation surrounded the usual small talk of what was happening with each person, but gradually transitioned to stories about favorite faculty members, classes and which textbooks were saved from the bookstore buy-back.  Those who graduated passed on survival wisdom to their old classmates and shook their heads knowingly to the tales of late night homework.  An MBA is not for the faint of heart and anything worth something requires effort.  The satisfaction of completion of a goal is what makes the journey worth IMG_1425the price. 

The dynamics of the students and alumni were evident even here at a happy hour.  One of the strengths of the MBA program lies in the diversity of students’ backgrounds, personalities and more.  Each student/alumnus brings something different to the table.  One could feel the energy this group creates even when sitting around in a restaurant.  Many suggestions for improvements and/or additions for the MBA program were offered along with encouragement for those practices that continue to work.  It’s amazing what can be developed over a platter of half price nachos!

The Lansdale MBA coordinator, Joe Zukauskas, made an appearance to visit with his current and former students and their guests.  IMG_1421Overall it was a relaxing evening with great conversation and the opportunity to rekindle friendships and connections with fellow MBA scholars.  With another successful Happy Hour under their belts, the talks turned to the next month. 

Keep your eyes and ears open for the next Happy Hour date/time/place to be posted soon!

*Please note: Happy hour events are planned by students/alumni.  They are not officially organized by the MBA program in anyway.*

22 Sep

Connecting with the MBA – Upcoming events!

Coming up are a few events that offer the opportunity to network with students and alumni of the MBA program as well as have some fun and learn a thing or two!

Friday, September 24th – “Happy Hour”
at the Bones Grille

After the last happy hour event, there was a unanimous vote to hold another one!  MBA Alumnus Janet Powidzki has been kind enough to set up the next “Happy Hour” event to take place this Friday starting at 5:30 pm.

Bones Grille
1650 Sumneytown Pike
Lansdale, PA 19446

If you would like to attend, please send an email to christina.hicks@desales.edu.   Don’t miss out on this fun event!

Thursday, October 28th – “Wisdom and Wine”
Lessons in Entrepreneurship from Amore Winery

Join the MBA Association as we enjoy wine tasting and listen to Gregg Amore, founder of Amore Winery talk about entrepreneurship and the wines he makes.  The event starts at 6:30 pm.

AmoreAmore Winery
6811 Steuben Road
Nazareth, PA 18064

This event is free for MBA Association members and only $10 for spouses/guests!

If you would like to attend, RSVP by October 22nd:
Kelly Skrapits

Space is limited to 50 people

Monday, November 15th – “Ethics in Hiring Decisions in a Digital Age”
Sponsored by the MBA Association

Google, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn… Have the major search engines, social media sites and business networking sites changed the hiring process? Are hiring managers, business owners, search firms and HR people using these media to screen candidates and to what degree? Are there clear ethical guidelines in place for privacy? This interactive workshop will explore this timely set of issues and more.

The meeting is at PPL, 2 N. 9th St., Allentown PA, first floor auditorium, (9th Street entrance). Parking (cost not included) is available at the Allentown Parking Authority deck in the 800 block of Linden St. (the former Hess’s Department Store deck).

TIME:  8:15 AM to 10:00 AM
Full Breakfast will be available from 7:15AM to 8:15 AM (included in the cost)

SPEAKER:  Dick Cipoletti, RCC Associates, www.rccassoc.com

2 CPE Credits are available

Please pre-register with Heather Stadalman at Heather.Stadalman@t-mobile.com or via phone at 484-347-7315. Advance payment can be sent to Heather Stadalman (ACFE Treasurer) at 1685 Valley Center Parkway Suite 100, Bethlehem PA, 18017. Payment will be accepted at the door but pre-registration is required by November 8, 2010. Registrants are responsible for payment if they do not cancel one week before the event (by November 8, 2010).

$ 20 members MBA Association members/ $25 non-members

8 Sep

DeSales MBA: A World of Opportunities

Since 2001, DeSales’ MBA students have had the opportunity to travel abroad as part of the study tour classes periodically offered in the MBA program.  Our students have traveled to Germany, Romania, Peru and India to experience first-hand the global business world.  They gained valuable knowledge regarding that country’s business environment through meetings with business executives, senior government officials and company visits.  Since globally-involved companies look  to employ professionals who have a better understanding of other cultures and customs, the students were also given a taste of the country’s cultures with trips to places like the Taj Mahal, Macchu Picchu, Cologne, Delphinarium and even a day long bike tour in Maastricht, Netherlands.

Here are some thoughts from participants regarding their study tour experiences

Germany 10 ResizeKim Happel participated in the very first study tour to Europe and says: “…Traveling abroad with DeSales was an amazing experience for all of us.  This class offered a great deal of perspective and insight into cultures, business practices and language.  Visiting various businesses, professionals, and Universities was a great eye-opening experience…”

Shelly Mule shared her thoughts about  the study tour to India:  “India is definitely a land of contradictions, from the Taj Mahal to extreme poverty, but there is a real emergence of a middle class and voracious focus on education.  Every MBA student should take the opportunity to witness this exciting change first-hand!”

Mary Ann McCaffrey traveled to Romania and Germany and remarked:  “I was surprised as to how alike and how very different the two countries (Romania and Germany) are compared to the U.S. and to each other.”

Peru Dressler ResizeJulia Dressler commented on the Peru study tour:  “During my undergraduate years, I lived and studied in Dublin, Ireland for three months and I’m not exaggerating when I say my short two weeks in Peru equaled the same level of cultural immersion, new knowledge, and personal growth…  If our visit to Peru taught one lesson, it’s the lesson of globalization for both business and education…”

Hopes for future MBA study tours

The MBA program would like to continue offering study tour trips.  In the last year, students from Romania and Peru have visited the U.S. on study tours developed by the MBA program to experience our American business and culture first-hand.  As further global connections are made, more study tours will be offered and additional cultural/economic learning experiences made available.  Our goal is to continue broadening our global focus as an MBA program and train globally-minded business professionals ready for the current and future business world.

If you have participated in one of our study tour classes or would like to suggest items for future trips, we would love to hear from you!   Forward your feedback to christina.hicks@desales.edu.

27 Aug

DeSales MBA Program Aims to Continue Excellence

After 100 days into the new fiscal year, DeSales University’s MBA staff has paused to reflect.  Under the leadership of its new director, Dr. David Gilfoil, the MBA team has been spending time on the basics:  evaluating its programs, recruiting new students and adjunct faculty, and streamlining its business processes.

“Our primary focus,” says Dr. Gilfoil, “is to take a fresh look at our program – and to practice what we teach about business.   We are looking at the program from the perspective of our primary stakeholders – our customers (students), our suppliers (full/part time faculty), our employees (management team,   administrators) and, of course, our “shareholders” (DSU leadership, and board of trustees).  We are reviewing our Business Department mission and ensuring that everything we do is aligned with that mission, key goals and objectives.  The staff meets monthly to review a focused set of key metrics and to drive the right set of programs, plans, and initiatives to improve those metrics.”

Gilfoil continues, “With 600+  active students,  12 full-time and 42 adjunct faculty, and 5 dedicated employees, there’s also tremendous opportunity to get feedback on what we can do better.  We want to get a balanced view of how we’re doing – what our constituents like as well as key opportunities for improvement. “

As part of that process, Dr. Gilfoil is meeting, one-on-one, with our MBA faculty (and students as available).  The objective is to first identify “low hanging fruit” – things that can be quickly fixed or implemented  (i.e. providing campus WiFi access)– and then develop a list of longer term items (i.e. curriculum and learning outcomes validated by current industry experts/market trends) that will keep us highly competitive.

A quick summary analysis of the 2009-2010 MBA program shows:

  1. Continued increase in registrations (~5-10%) over the previous year thus far.
  2. Most of our students (~72%) are focusing their studies in Management, Self-design, Healthcare Systems Management or Project Management concentrations.
  3. An increasing number of students are taking courses online (120+ registrations this session).

According to a recent study by Educational Benchmarking Inc., our MBA graduates are very pleased with our program’s overall effectiveness.  Comparing us to similar institutions, they rate our facilities, computing resources and our support services, significantly better.  They are also happier with course availability, the quality of core course faculty/instruction, as well as the personal attention our program coordinators provide.

DSU’s MBA program continues to cultivate win-win relationships with several area companies, including Pocono Medical Center, Lutron Inc., Merck, and Lehigh Valley Hospital on both formal and informal bases.  And, as part of our global efforts, we continue to monitor and attempt to improve our partnership programs with the Upetrom company in Romania and the Romanian American University.  Two groups of students from Upetrom recently visited the U.S. and had the opportunity to attend classes in person, visit local companies, and tour Philadelphia and New York City.  We are also working on a pilot partnership program with Universidad Peruana Ciensias (UPC) in Lima, Peru, to provide hybrid graduate courses in Project Management beginning in 2010.

“Although the level of competition is increasing”, says Dr. Gilfoil, “We are confident that the DeSales MBA program will continue to grow and prosper.   As long as we keep our focus on the basics and provide what our customers want – affordable, quality instruction taught by real world professionals in a variety of delivery modes and venues – we will win in the marketplace”.   Stay tuned to future articles for more in depth information on the DeSales MBA program.

26 Aug

DeSales MBA signs partnership with Immaculata University

Immaculata University and DeSales University have joined in a partnership agreement whereby the DeSales MBA Program will be offered at Immaculata beginning in Fall 2010 session.

The presidents of both institutions, Father Bernard F. O’Connor, OSFS, of DeSales, and Sister R. Patricia Fadden, IHM, of Immaculata, signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Tuesday, May 25, at the Immaculata campus.

Similar Missions
“As Catholic institutions, both Immaculata and DeSales have similar missions and are very focused upon strengthening the ethical dimension of business education,” said Fr. O’Connor. “We are so pleased that students in the Chester County area will have the opportunity to enroll in the unique DeSales MBA Program, learn from it and, consequently, make a positive impact on work and society.”

Sister Patricia Fadden, IHM, president of Immaculata University, commented that “Immaculata’s partnership with DeSales affirms our commitment to offer the best education possible to those students who either live or work in Chester County. DeSales brings to Immaculata 14 years of experience in offering a quality program that is sought after by so many people. An alliance of two universities, founded on similar principles, naturally creates a perfect union.”

Management and Health Care Systems Management
Students will be able to pursue the management and health care systems management concentrations in the DeSales MBA Program. Courses will be taught by DeSales faculty members.

“DeSales brings the MBA intellectual property and experienced faculty. Immaculata brings the marketplace, logistics and a credible reputation,” said Dr. David Gilfoil, director of the DeSales MBA Program. “Together, we will be a formidable competitor in the Chester County area.”

According to Gilfoil, Chester County is an ideal marketplace for the DeSales program, as it is the fourth fastest growing county in Pennsylvania and has the right demographics relating to per capita income, education attainment level, and a target community ideal for the DeSales MBA concentration offerings of management and health care systems management.

“DeSales’ initial MBA offerings will be tailored to Immaculata’s current adult student population, a group that responded quite favorably to our general interest survey,” said Gilfoil. “We plan on expanding and building our concentration offerings upon initial success with that group.”

About the Program
Anyone interested in enrolling in the DeSales MBA Program at Immaculata will be admitted through the DeSales University admissions process and must meet all the necessary requirements.

“DeSales and Immaculata have a partnership ‘chemistry.’ We share the same passion for Christian humanism, the same values, ethical principles and educational standards,” said Gilfoil. “We believe Chester County, with the right customer demographics and surrounding business communities to engage, is an ideal marketplace.”

Approximately 1,650 students have graduated from the DeSales MBA Program, since it was established in 1996. Companies represented by students in the program include Air Products & Chemicals, Aventis Pharmaceuticals, Dun & Bradstreet, Dupont Pharmaceuticals, Kraft Foods, Lockheed Martin, Lucent, Lutron, Lehigh Valley Hospital, PNC Bank, Olympus, Price Waterhouse Coopers, Rohm & Haas, Sanofi-Pasteur, Sodexho, St. Luke’s Hospital, Verizon, among others.

“Immaculata’s College of Graduate Studies is pleased to welcome DeSales to Chester County. The two schools have much in common: commitment to a values-based education, focus on academic excellence and service to the needs of working adults. I believe that this new partnership will offer students the best of both institutions and, as a result, they will experience a unique and unparalleled learning opportunity,” commented Dr. Janet Kane, Dean, College of Graduate Studies at Immaculata University.

Immaculata University is a private, Catholic, coeducational institution sponsored by the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The University, located on 375-acres 20 miles west of Philadelphia, offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in over 60 academic programs. It has approximately 100 full-time faculty members and an enrollment of nearly 4,000. Founded originally as Villa Maria in 1920, the name was formally changed to Immaculata College in 1929.

DeSales University, in Center Valley, Pa., is a private, coeducational, four-year liberal arts university affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church. Founded by the Oblates of Saint Francis de Sales in 1965, the 450-acre suburban campus is located 50 miles north of Philadelphia and about 90 miles south of New York City. A total enrollment of nearly 3,000 includes undergraduate day and evening students and graduate students. DeSales has approximately full-time faculty members and offers 37 bachelor’s degrees and six graduate programs in a wide range of disciplines. The university also offers the ACCESS Program, the region’s leading accelerated degree program for adults.

Anyone wanting to learn more about this exciting partnership can contact the program coordinator, Joe Zukauskas at joseph.zukauskas@desales.edu 215-361-3465

25 Aug

DeSales MBA Congratulates MBA Student for Receiving Annual Dr. Hal Dolenga Emerging Leader Award

Thomas Lutz, DeSales University MBA student in Health Care Management, is the recipient of the annual Dr. Hal Dolenga Emerging Leader Award. The annual award recognizes an outstanding student in the health care systems management concentration of the DeSales University MBA Program. Lutz, currently employed at Merck &Co., was honored at the award ceremony held at DeSales earlier this academic year.

Dr. Hal Dolenga Emerging Leader Award is named in honor of Dr. Hal Dolenga, who helped establish the MBA program in 1990, and was the first director of the MBA program at DeSales. The University has hosted the award ceremony for the past nine years.

The award was presented by the Lehigh Valley chapter of the American College of Health Care Executives (ACHE) EPAHEN. Kim Huggins, owner and president of K HR Solutions in Harleysville, Pa., which provides human resources consulting for organizations of various sizes, was the guest speaker for the event. Her talk, “Generations in the Workplace,” focused on generational differences in the workforce, and how leadership must adapt to those differences between Baby Boomers, through Generation X, through Generation Y.

ACHE, the premier professional educational group for health care leaders, is an international professional society of over 30,000 health care executives, who lead the nation’s hospitals, health care systems, and organizations.

The Eastern Pennsylvania Health Executive Network (EPAHEN) is the local chapter of ACHE. EPAHEN has worked closely with DeSales to launch a student chapter of ACHE. The goal of the student chapter is to provide a network for undergraduate and graduate students to meet, exchange ideas, contribute to the field, and advance the goals of ACHE.

“It is a great honor to receive the Dolenga Emerging Leader Award,” said Lutz. “There are many talented professionals studying in the MBA program at DeSales. I feel privileged to be recognized in this way.”

Currently, Lutz is employed at Merck& Co., Inc. as an executive hospital representative. He received his B.A. from Muhlenberg College in 1990.  He resides in Schnecksville, Pa., with his wife, Anne, and their three children.

28 Jul

MBA Program to join the Blogsophere!

The MBA program is working on developing an official MBA blog.  This is currently a work in progress.  We look forward to officially launching the MBA blog very soon.  We hope this will be another way for our students, alumni, faculty and others to stay informed and connected!


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