Alabama Power Company Chairman, President and CEO Mark Crosswhite made his first visit to a UAB Collat School of Business class when he was the speaker at the combined undergraduate capstone and MBA class, “Strategic Leadership Through the Eyes of the C-Suite,” on October 6, 2015. Crosswhite was named CEO in 2013.
The parent company of Alabama Power, Southern Company, is the leading electric energy company serving the Southeast., with over 4.4 million customers. In addition to Alabama Power, Southern Company also owns Georgia Power, Gulf Power, and Mississippi Power. Southern Company operates three nuclear generating plans, and is building the first new nuclear units to be built in a generation of Americans. Alabama Power has 1.5 million customers. It recently announced that it was purchasing AGL Resources, parent of Atlanta Gas Light, which will make it the second largest utility in the country based on customer numbers.
Accounting Professor Frank Messina, UAB’s Faculty Athletics Representative (FAR) to the NCAA, has been appointed by the NCAA Board of Directors to its prestigious Division I Committee on Academics.
The NCAA stated that Dr. Messina’s passion, work ethic and leadership with them led to the decision to appoint him to this committee position. Only seven faculty athletics representatives nationwide were selected for the 20-member committee.
The Division I Committee on Academics supports the NCAA’s academic mission by managing Division I academics matters, including policy, eligibility standards, and the NCAA Division I Academic Performance Program. The Committee on Academics is chaired by a Division I president and consists of university presidents, a provost, faculty athletics representatives, directors of athletics, senior woman administrators, conference administrators and a student-athlete.
Dr. Messina will also serve on the NCAA data subcommittee, which deals specifically with Academic Progress Rate (APR) and Graduation Success Rate (GSR) as well. He has served as UAB’s faculty athletics representative for seven years.
Simulation can be a vehicle for testing potentially revolutionary new ideas, points out Rubin Pillay, M.D., Ph.D., assistant dean for Global Health in the UAB School of Medicine and professor of healthcare innovation and entrepreneurship at the UAB Collat School of Business. “Medicine is an evidence-based profession,” he noted. “I can’t go into the ER and start tweaking things just to see what happens. But the way health care is going, you have to be innovative just to survive. And innovation, by its very nature, is all about doing something that’s never been done before.”
That’s why Pillay is developing a “design and simulation lab” as part of the proposed UAB Center for Healthcare Innovation, “a place where anybody can feel free to come in and try out new ideas,” he explained. The approach has been pioneered by the Mayo Clinic and Kaiser Permanente, Pillay says. A nurse could use computer simulations to model a new approach to scheduling surgeries in UAB’s operating rooms, for example. Engineers and entrepreneurs could come together to test smartphone-based monitoring systems for patients. Entire medical teams could practice a new workflow in a replica patient room, without interrupting standard care.
“Not everything will work,” Pillay said. “But it’s just like the tech industry — the idea is to fail fast, cheap and forward. That’s how you learn.”
Regions Financial Corporation Chairman, President and CEO Grayson Hall was the inaugural CEO guest in the combined undergraduate capstone and MBA class, “Strategic Leadership Through the Eyes of the C-Suite,” on September 22, 2015.
Regions Financial has adopted the concept of “shared value” in its business, in which everyone shares in the benefits of an organization’s strategy. Harvard Business School professor Michael Porter, who is generally regarded as the most influential voice today on strategic thinking for business, created this concept.
Collat and the School of Medicine partnered to develop a program aiming to provide MD/MBA graduates the best possible trajectory to expand their career options, and to create future physician-executives.
The new dual-degree program will give medical students the training and education to better understand the business side of health care, through providing courses in accounting and finance, economics, marketing, management, health care innovation, operations, and supply chain management with a focus on health care, as well as information technology and business strategy with a focus on health care.
Over 30 alumni of the Collat School of Business were in attendance on September 3, 2015 when Assistant Professor Stephen A. Yoder, J.D., spoke on “Negotiation and Persuasion Skills for Internal Auditors.” The IIA is the internal audit profession's global voice and principal educator.
The Birmingham chapter of IIA is composed of internal auditors at all sizes and types of organizations in the Birmingham area, with most employed at the largest organizations, such as Regions Financial, BBVA Compass, and Protective Life.
With two Rhodes Scholars chosen from the previous six cohorts, there are high expectations for the 35-five students in the class of 2016 cohort of the Collat School of Business Honors Program. Participants in the Honors Program are selected on the basis of their academic performance in courses at the School of Business and in courses elsewhere at UAB, and on the basis of faculty and advisor recommendations.
Most of Collat School of Business disciplines are represented among the majors of the students. In addition, there are also some non-business disciplines represented from students who have majors outside of business, but who see business as a smart complement to their non-business studies. The majors of the 2016 cohort are:
• Management (9 students)
• Finance (8 students)
• Industrial Distribution (7 students)
• Accounting (4 students0
• Economics (3 students)
• Biology (1 student)
• Information Systems (1 student)
• Neuroscience (1 student)
• Political Science (1 student)
Daniel, who graduated from the UAB Collat School of Business in 2004 with a bachelor's degree in economics, is CEO of Sigma93 Capital Management, one of the half-dozen student-let companies in UAB's Innovation Lab (iLab) inside Innovation Depot. He was selected based on his involvement with companies in Innovation Depot, his engagement with the ILab and his support of Collat programs, said iLab director Kathleen Hamrick.
"He well represents the caliber of talent coming from the Collat entrepreneurship programs," said Hamrick.
Professor Stephen Yoder, JD spoke to the Alabama Chapter of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners on August 14, 2015 on “Barriers to Good Ethical Decision-Making.” Certified fraud examiners are required to take training in ethics each year in order to maintain their certifications, and Yoder’s presentation fulfilled that requirement.
In his remarks, Yoder noted that the most common reasons for good people to make bad ethical decisions include youth, a desire to fit in, over-confidence, and over-optimism. He described how many of these conditions were present in some well-known decisions in business that are now considered unethical, such as at Ford Motor Company with its design of the Pinto in the 1970s and at Enron Corporation in the 1970s.
Yoder said, “I use many of the same examples with students here at the Collat School of Business as I use with seasoned accounting professionals in continuing education sessions. Most students have never heard of Enron, but benefit from hearing about the conditions that were present that led to the downfall of that company.”
Yoder teaches business law, ethics, strategy, corporate governance, and leadership. He is the former general counsel of a publicly-traded bank holding company.