SBE Hosts Grand Opening for Sam Tidwell Student Center

On Thursday, September 13th, the School of Business & Economics is hosting a grand opening for the Sam Tidwell Student Center. The student center was finished in fall 2006, and is now being dedicated and celebrated for its resources.

The grand opening will offer faculty, staff, and students the opportunity to enjoy some light refreshments, mingle amongst themselves, and learn what the center has to offer them. On the garden level of the Academic Offices Building, students can use the student center as a place to study or meet with tutors for various business and economics classes, meet with groups to work on projects at one of the two computer stations, or search the bulletin board for job postings. Also located on the garden level are two conference rooms for student groups or organizations to hold meetings, as well as Brad Wagner’s office, the Advisor for the School of Business & Economics, and Andrea Barry’s office, the Outreach Coordinator for the SBE. The student center is named after Professor Emeritus Sam B. Tidwell, originally from Mississippi, who came to Michigan Tech in 1956 as an associate professor in the School of Business. He also started the Red Tie tradition in 1956, through which each student who passed the CPA exam would send Professor Tidwell a red tie. Various red ties can be seen throughout the School of Business & Economics.

Student Organization Fair

On Monday, September 17th the School of Business and Economics Student Organizations will be hosting an Informational Fair in front of the Academic Offices Building from 3-6 PM. They will be sharing information on their respective business organizations.

They will also be grilling out, so stop by and learn more about ways to get involved in the SBE.

Organizations involved will be:
American Marketing Association
Business Professionals of America
Kappa Sigma Iota
Phi Beta Lambda
Association of Information Technology Professionals
Alpha Kappa Psi

SBE Students Garner Top Honors at Annual Student Awards Banquet

The 13th Annual Student Awards Banquet: Recognizing Excellence and Leadership at Michigan Technological University was held on April 29, 2007 where SBE students started the night off with taking the President’s Award for Leadership.

The following SBE students were recognized at the awards banquet.

MTU President’s Award for Leadership: Elizabeth Molnar (MIS). Nominees also included SBE students Alex Tiseo and Elise Vertin.

MTU Rising Star of the Year: SherAaron Hurt (Management/Finance). SBE students Tracy Payne and Elise Vertin were also nominated.

Most Improved Student Organization: The SBE’s chapter of the American Marketing Association. SBE student leaders are Kevin Brock, President, and Mairi Smith-Risk, Executive Vice President, and SBE faculty advisors are Dongwook Kim and Robert Mark.

Woman of Promise Award (SBE): Rachel Boyle (Management)

Greek Woman of the Year: Elizabeth Molnar (MIS)

Outstanding Sorority of the Year Award: Delta Zeta. SBE student Rachel Boyle (MIS) is President of DZ.

Other SBE students nominated for awards at the Student included Danielle Norton for the the Provost’s Award for Scholarship; Mairi Smith-Risk for Exceptional Leadership in the Residential Community; Kevin Brock, Jill Garrity, Mairi Smith-Risk, and Alex Tiseo for Exceptional Enthusiasm as a Student Leader; and Amber Tarver and Elise Vertin for Student Employee of the Year.

In addition, two SBE faculty were nominated for Student Organization Advisor of the Year: Jim Gale and Teresa Woods.

Hurt Selected for GM Sullivan Fellowship

Sophomore SherAaron Hurt, a business administration major, has been selected to be Michigan Tech’s participant in the General Motors Sullivan Fellowship Program.


The Sullivan Fellowship is based on the Global Sullivan Principles of Corporate Social Responsibility. Developed by the Reverend Leon Sullivan, they are a set of human rights principles to be recognized by business and industry. They include providing workers a living wage and a safe workplace, refusing to pay bribes and honoring intellectual property.

Hurt was selected based on her grade point average, campus and community involvement, and ability to be an effective ambassador for the Sullivan Principles. She will receive an internship with GM, where she will evaluate her unit’s understanding and implementation of the Sullivan Principles. The fellowship also includes a $5,000 scholarship for 2007-08.

Finally, Hurt will be working with Enterprise program director Mary Raber to implement training and workshops on the Sullivan Principles on campus and in the community.

“Reverend Sullivan has been in my church before and was a wonderful speaker and a friend of my pastor’s,” Hurt said. “Spiritually, his foundation is my foundation, so being able to talk about this great man and his ideas is a special privilege.”

After her internship at GM, in August, she returns to Michigan Tech to continue to promote the Sullivan Principles.

“I hope to speak at orientation and make presentations at local high schools,” she said. “I want to make sure I reach as many people as possible, just as Reverend Sullivan did.”

The fellowship is sponsored by GM and the United Negro College Fund. For more information on the Sullivan Principles, visit

Accounting Students Team Up with Alumni at Kimberly-Clark

In an effort to give accounting students in the SBE more hands on and real world experience, Dr. Larry Davis has established an ongoing working relationship with Kimberly-Clark.

SBE: Tell us about the project in detail.

LD: Students interact with the Kimberly-Clark Tax Center of Excellence to gain an understanding of the business processes within the Center of Excellence. This is done via office visits and conference calls. Students then prepare graphic and narrative descriptions of those processes with the objective of facilitating improvements in those processes. Part of the process involves Kimberly-Clark personnel coaching students both on the actual work being performed and on general appropriate professional behavior.

What the students get out of this is exposure to a real business process and to professionals, a realization that the accounting that they study in school is the accounting that real professionals perform daily – albeit at much higher level. They gain an understanding of what is expected of tax professionals both from the perspective of the quality of work performed and interactions with other professionals.

SBE: Are we working directly with any SBE alumni at Kimberly-Clark?

LD: Dave Bernard, the VP of Tax, was the major facilitator for starting this. We also work with Rich Beauvais. Both are MTU accounting alums.

SBE: Who came up with the idea to start the project? Has this been done in the past? Do other universities work on a similar project or is this experience unique for MTU students?

LD: I did. I have been looking to start an accounting consulting group ever since I came here. We have in the past done work for some of the engineering enterprises and local businesses to ‘get our feet wet.’

I would not say it is ONLY done here – but it is not done at very many places. I would say that it is fair to say that it is a distinguishing characteristic of our program.

SBE: Are only accounting students involved? How many total students are on this project? How did they get selected for the project?

LD: There are always accounting students involved, but we bring in folks from other disciplines as needed to form cross-disciplinary teams. So far the Kimberly-Clark project has always involved both accounting students and information systems students given the nature of the work. It is not clear if IS students will continue on this particular engagement or not.

We have had about 40-50 students work on the project. Students are selected via application to the faculty supervisor.

SBE: When will the project be completed? What is the biggest advantage for students who are on this project?

LD: From one perspective…hopefully never. I would like to see this as a permanently ongoing relation as projects arise. On the other hand, our initial work documenting their Tax area systems should be done within a year, if not sooner.