Dear friends,

Our approach to business education focuses not simply on what happens in the classroom, but on giving our students a variety of opportunities to discover their paths in life. Some students will become the business leaders of our region or beyond, others may take over family businesses or launch their own businesses, some will pursue public and community service, and a few may even turn out to be future professors and scholars.

A Carson College education prepares students for any of these roles. In fact, we have an obligation to do just that. We have a strong interest in our students’ success, as we expect our graduates to drive the continued prosperity of our region. Further, education is part of our students’ path forward, but our mission is to provide even more. Through the Carson College, individual students achieve their own dreams, and they also become engaged citizens who are able to create economic opportunities for many others besides themselves.

In this issue of eDividend, we bring you many examples of the paths we provide Carson College students to help them understand what it means to contribute to business success, and, eventually, to find their way to becoming successful leaders, innovators, entrepreneurs, and more.

You’ll read about the winners of the annual Business Plan Competition, where students showcased their creative ventures. Alumni who served as judges and mentors for our program saw business plans including audio devices that can provide e-commerce-level data collection and analytics for stores, solutions to improve muscle problems from repetitive use injuries in nonprofessional athletes, and a new digital thermometer to help increase the amount of milk pasteurization done by migrant cow herders in the developing world.

Our story on a newly implemented job negotiation workshop, hosted by the Carson Center for Student Success and enhanced by the expertise of panelist Shannon Flynn (’95), highlights how students practice strategic negotiation skills that will help them succeed in any job interview—no matter what career path they choose. In this example and in the features about Mike Thomas’ finance lecture and Patrick Dooley’s presentation on trends within the senior living industry, you will see how we tap the Cougar network and industry professionals to complement our efforts to expose students to industry, cutting-edge technologies, and real-world business experience. Features on our undergraduate finance students’ accomplishment of outperforming the S&P 500 and the Executive MBA online students’ international study experience in China further illustrate this point. So many paths are possible!

We are building momentum. Our focus on student success is catching hold. Our students feel it, and it is reflected in their inspiring stories, such as the feature on Thalia DeLeon’s journey toward her goal of becoming an entrepreneur. A recent management graduate with a big entrepreneurial vision, she is a great example of how the path to success is not always linear but can be accomplished through hard work and accessibility provided by a land-grant university.

I invite you to join us in supporting our students as they navigate the opportunities that are available to them. Together, we will show them the best path to a top business education in the Pacific Northwest is through the Carson College of Business.

Go Cougs!

Chip Hunter, Dean