2022-2023 Annual Report
A MESSAGE FROM THE DEAN
It was a dynamic year at the GW School of Business as we continued to reimagine business education to meet fast-changing workforce needs.
We introduced new 4+1 combined degree pathways that enable GW students to earn an undergraduate degree and specialized business master’s degree in five years. More advanced analytical skills were built into the Master of Science in Marketing program, giving our graduates a competitive advantage in a hyper-competitive workforce. Our Master of Accountancy, meanwhile, required students to pursue one of two majors, enabling them to show employers a greater level of specialized expertise.
In tandem with those curriculum changes, we celebrated our students’ success as they learned, consulted, and interned around the world. GWSB graduates and undergraduates claimed spots in the winners’ circle at the New Venture Competition, made impressive showings in case competitions across the country, and presented promising entrepreneurial ideas at Pitch George. Students also leveraged leadership lessons from the classroom as they contributed to the activities of our student organizations on campus.
Faculty members advanced trailblazing research, published in premier academic journals, held leadership positions within their academic societies, and emerged as among the most-cited experts in their fields. Our professors embraced interdisciplinary collaboration with local, national, and global impact. They also demonstrated exceptional engagement with students in the classroom. Against that backdrop, our academic rigor and excellence were noticed. The GW School of Business continued its rise into the top ranks of business schools.
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For the third year in a row, the Financial Times named our school No. 1 in the country for the percentage of women enrolled in a full-time MBA program. We were proud to be recognized among the top 10 institutions for graduate study of international business, as well the eighth “Best International MBA” in U.S. News & World Report’s 2023-2024 Best Graduate Schools list. We are especially proud of these distinctions as this year marked the 15th anniversary of the Consulting Abroad Program, a required component of our Global MBA.
Our school’s influence on and access to leadership and policymakers — in both government and industry — were also on display. This was most evident at the GW Business & Policy Forum, which we spearheaded in partnership with the School of Engineering and Applied Science, College of Professional Studies, and GW Law. Our Board of Advisors and Corporate Council provided invaluable support for this prestigious event.
The daylong forum examined opportunities for academia, industry, and government to join forces in preventing and mitigating cyber-attacks that threaten the economy and national security. The gathering showcased the agility and capacity of our school — and GW — to serve as a nexus for thoughtful and innovative responses to our world’s most urgent challenges.
Alumni make our school strong, and we were delighted to honor 12 distinguished alumni and faculty members as inaugural inductees into the GW Business Entrepreneurial Hall of Fame. These honorees embodied the skills and spirit of innovation that form the core of a GWSB education.
Our alumni deepened their commitment to their alma mater in meaningful ways. They participated in the school-wide Diversity and Allyship Week that kicked off spring semester. They mentored students, took part in career discussions, funded scholarships, and supported programming. Their generosity enabled us to advance our strategic plan and energize the next generation of business leaders who will build innovation, diversity, inclusion, and sustainability into the future workplace.
The school saw the shape-changing effects of the alumni gift from Ric Duquès (BBA '65, MBA ’69) and Dawn Duquès (BA ’69). Their generosity is enabling us to upgrade the technology and classrooms at GWSB and will significantly elevate our student experience.
The Diversity Council creatively guided our work to advance diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) throughout our school and supported regular events and initiatives aimed at building a culture where everyone belongs. Diversity and inclusion also underpinned the remarkable work of the F. David Fowler Career Center, which added a new Security Technology Transition Community of Practice, organized a dynamic Career Week, and equipped students with career-building skills they will carry for a lifetime.
As work on many fronts propelled the school toward its strategic goals, I was inspired by the scope of talent and unwavering dedication of the GWSB community. Together we are contributing to a greater world.
Dean Anuj Mehrotra
By the Numbers
#1 for Percentage of Women Enrolled in Full-time MBA Programs Among U.S. Institutions (Tied for #2 Worldwide)
Financial Times 2022-2023 MBA Top 100 Rankings
#3 for Diversity
Bloomberg Businessweek 2022-2023 Best Business Schools Ranking
GWSB Produces Cutting-Edge Research that Informs Business and Policy
Does giving chatbots a racial identity affect consumer decisions? Can wildfires, a growing global threat, be predicted and managed through mathematical models? What happens to employee morale when organizations spotlight diversity and inclusion but don’t follow through in practice? Is there a future for indigenous tourism in the United States?
Innovative research to answer those questions formed but a small part of GWSB’s influential scholarship during the 2022-2023 academic year. The interdisciplinary work of faculty and the school’s research centers and institutes informed the academy and the business world while also drawing the attention of academic journals and consumer media.
“GWSB faculty continue to engage in cutting-edge research that is distinguishing the school,” said Vice Dean for Faculty and Research Jiawen Yang. “Research collaboration within the school and with other areas of the university is also expanding, and the results are deepening knowledge and informing policymakers in far-reaching ways.”
GWSB produced high-profile research in international business, finance, management, and other areas where the school has long distinguished itself. It also carved out expertise in new areas affecting the post-pandemic business and industry landscape. That work covered a broad range of issues, from the effectiveness of job interviews to smart city supply chain operations to corporate responses to climate change.
GWSB research appeared in top academic journals and its faculty members were found among the most-cited academic researchers. Faculty also were singled out in a 2022 Stanford University study that ranked the world’s most influential scholars. The study looked at the top 2 percent of scholars in 22 different fields. For GWSB, Herman Aguinis, the Avram Tucker Distinguished Scholar, was ranked No. 67 among the world’s top 53,336 business and management scholars while Donna Hoffman, the Louis Rosenfeld Distinguished Scholar and co-director of the Center for the Connected Consumer, was ranked No. 182 among the world’s 8,623 most influential marketing scholars.
“We are excited by the research findings coming out of the School of Business and proud of our faculty’s longstanding commitment to rigor and excellence.”
Vice Dean for Faculty and Research
- Awards & Recognition
GW School of Business faculty received a number of awards in the 2022-2023 academic year. They include:
Joel Gehman, professor of strategic management & public policy and Lindner-Gambal Professor of Business Ethics, has won election to become the next chair of the Organization and Management Theory (OMT) Division of the Academy of Management. Over the course of a 5-year term in the office from August 2023-August 2028, Professor Gehman will rotate in OMT positions that include Professional Development Workshops (PDW) Chair, Program Chair, Division Chair Elect, Division Chair, and Past Division Chair. Learn more.
Donald E. Hawkins, emeritus professor of tourism studies, management and international affairs at GW Business, was awarded the Gold Medal of Tourism Merit, 1st degree, from Nuno Fazenda de Almeida, Portugal's Secretary of State for Tourism, Commerce, and Services, for his “remarkable” work in the field of tourism, including his efforts to promote sustainable tourism worldwide, and his contributions to strategic tourism planning and tourism development over the past 50 years. Among Professor Hawkins' current and past leadership roles and service activities are envoy to the Sustainable Tourism Global Center (STGC) in the Saudi Arabia Ministry of Tourism; chairman of Solimar International; special advisor to the Secretary-General of the United Nations World Tourism Organization (2013-2017); and chairman emeritus of the SAVE Travel Alliance, Volunteers for Economic Growth Alliance, and the Sustainable Travel Alliance.
Herman Aguinis, Avram Tucker Distinguished Scholar and professor of management, has been recognized with a “10-Year Impact Award” from SAGE Publishing for a journal article he co-authored in the Journal of Management, titled “What We Know and Don’t Know About Corporate Social Responsibility: A Review and Research Agenda." The 10-Year Impact Award is given to the authors of the three articles that have been cited the most compared to all articles published in the SAGE journal portfolio during the preceding 10-year period. Professor Aguinis’ article has received more than 4,600 Google Scholar citations. His study synthesizes the vast literature on corporate social responsibility and describes the factors that lead firms to engage in CSR, as well as the outcomes of CSR initiatives.
Herman Aguinis, Avram Tucker Distinguished Scholar and professor of management, has been identified as the world’s #5 most productive researcher in the domain of “scientific reproducibility” (the extent to which scientific results are confirmed by a different team of researchers). The study, published in the journal Information and Knowledge Management, used bibliometric analysis and was based on all journal articles available in the Web of Science database from 1991 November 2022, which is a database that includes 12,000 high-impact journals and 160,000 conference proceedings.
Heather Berry, professor of international business and international affairs in the Department of International Business, has been elected to the Academy of International Business (AIB), a prestigious, selective honor recognizing faculty who have made outstanding contributions to the International Business profession and field.
Young Hoon Kwak, associate professor of decision sciences, is the recipient of the 2023 Global Research Award from the International Project Management Associations (IPMA) for his research, titled “Sustainable Smart City Framework for the Future.” The award recognizes researchers for “outstanding contributions to the development of the field and profession project management.” The IPMA comprises 70 member associations and is the oldest project management association in the world.
Cevat Tosun, director of the M.S. in Tourism, Hospitality and Event Management program and Eisenhower Chair and professor of tourism studies and management, has been ranked as the #1 "the most cited and the most influential reference author" in the area of research on "meaningful community participation for effective development of sustainable tourism.” The ranking was included in an article published in the Journal of Outdoor Recreation and Tourism.
Herman Aguinis, Avram Tucker Distinguished Scholar and professor of management, has been ranked as the #2 most prolific researcher in the world in the area of “performance management.” The ranking was published in an article titled, “Performance Management: A bibliometric Analysis from 1976 to 2022,” published in the Proceedings of the 16th International Management Conference. The study was based on the 13,751 researchers who authored at least five articles on performance management from 1976 through July 2022.
Chad Yi-Chun Ho, associate professor of information systems and technology management, was ranked #24 worldwide (tie) in a recent AIS Research Ranking based on his publications in Top-2 Information Science journals between 2020-2022.
Herman Aguinis, Avram Tucker Distinguished Scholar and professor of management, was ranked 38th in the U.S. and 68th in the world in an examination of more than 7,819 Business and Management scientists conducted by Research.com.
Also ranked on the list from research.com are three additional faculty members from the GW School of Business: Elias G. Carayannis, professor of information systems and technology management and director of the European Union Research Center; Donna L. Hoffman, Louis Rosenfeld Distinguished Scholar and professor of marketing and co-director of the Center for the Connected Consumer; and Young Hoon Kwak, associate professor of decision sciences.
Herman Aguinis, Avram Tucker Distinguished Scholar and professor of management, was ranked in an analysis and overview of strategic leadership research history in the latest issue of the Journal of Business Research Journal, listing him as number four among researchers for most “publication productivity on strategic leadership” between 2011–2020 and twelfth for the period from 1980–2020, as well as fourth among researchers for the most “dominance on strategic leadership,” for the period between 1980–2020.
Vikram Bhargava, assistant professor of strategic management and public policy, was invited to join the Journal of Business Ethics editorial board as co-editor of the Technology and Business Ethics section. This is one of the two top business ethics journals and is also included on the Financial Times "50 Journals used in FT Research Rank" (FT-50) list. Professor Bhargava began his term on January 15.
Professor James Wade has been invited to renew his membership on the editorial board for Administrative Science Quarterly (ASQ) through 2024.
Career Milestones Honoree: George Jabbour (M.B.A. ’83, Ph.D. ’89), vice dean for executive education, professor of finance, and founding director of the M.S. in finance program, was recognized for his 35 years of service to GW during the 2021 GW Career Milestones ceremony.
Jennifer Merluzzi, associate professor of strategic management and public policy, has been invited to renew her position on the editorial board for Administrative Science Quarterly (ASQ) through December 31, 2024. She has served as an editorial board member at ASQ since 2017 and this is her third term on the board. Professor Merluzzi also serves as a senior editor at Organization Science and was recently asked by the new incoming editor-in-chief, Lamar Pierce, Beverly and James Hance professor of strategy at the Olin School of Business at Washington University in St. Louis, to extend in that role until 2025.
Miguel Lejeune, professor of decision sciences, has received a grant from the Cross-Disciplinary Research Fund (CDRF) for a project titled, “Power Grid Resilience against Heatwaves: Algorithms and Solutions.”
Annamaria Lusardi, university professor of economics and accountancy and founder and academic director of the Global Financial Literacy Excellence Center (GFLEC), has been awarded a Pearson Prize from the editors of the Financial Management journal. The prize is given biennially to the best papers published in the journal during the prior two years. Professor Lusardi's winning paper is titled "Financial literacy and financial resilience: Evidence from around the world."
Miguel Lejeune, professor of decision sciences, has received a grant from the University Facilitating Fund (UFF - FY23) for a project on the topic, “Queuing Optimization Framework for Cloud Computing in Data Centers: New Performance Metrics, Models, and Algorithms.”
Long He, associate professor of decision sciences, was recognized with the “Best Publication in Energy” Award from the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS) during the INFORMS annual meeting in Indianapolis for his paper, Charging an Electric Vehicle-Sharing Fleet.
Sharon Hill, associate professor of management, was awarded funding from the University Seminars Series (USS) Funding Program for Academic Year 2022-2023 in the amount of $4,000 for her project, “Building Research Interdisciplinarily to Develop Gender Equity (GW-BRIDGE).” The award is a renewal of a prior award Professor Hill received from the USS.
Jin Hyung Kim, assistant professor of international business, was recognized with a second-consecutive “Best Reviewer” award by the Strategic Management Journal (SMJ) for his service on the Editorial Review Board.
Miguel Lejeune, professor of decision sciences, was awarded grant funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF) for the project "Collaborative Research: NNA Research: Foundations for Improving Resilience in the Energy Sector against Wildfires on ALaskan Lands (FIREWALL)." This is a $2.82M four-year, multi-institutional and multidisciplinary national effort among George Washington University, the University of Alaska at Anchorage (UAA), University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF) and Washington State University (WSU). The grant is supported by the NSF program, Navigating the New Arctic (NNA), which is one of NSF's 10 Big Ideas that has supported fundamental convergence research across the social, natural, environmental, engineering and computing and information sciences since 2017.
Joel Gehman, Lindner-Gambal Professor of Business Ethics and professor of strategic management and public policy, was invited to join the Academy of Management Journal Editorial Review Board for the July 1, 2022 to June 30, 2025 term. This is his second 3-year term on the Academy of Management Journal Editorial Review Board. Dr. Gehman was also one of 24 winners, out of the 300+ members of the Editorial Review Board, to receive the “Best Reviewer Award” from the Academy of Management Journal at the Academy of Management. Separately, Professor Gehman also serves on the Administrative Science Quarterly Editorial Review Board for the period January 1, 2022 to December 31, 2023. This is his third 2-year term on the Administrative Science Quarterly Editorial Review Board.
Miguel Lejeune, professor of decision sciences, received a $451,759 three-year grant from the Office of Naval Research on the theme "Vehicle Fleet Management for Network Resilience: Scholastic Programming Advancements Under Endogenous Uncertainty."
GW School of Business faculty provided expertise and insights through new books, papers and articles published between July 2022 and June 2023, including:
Patrick Hall, visiting faculty member in our Department of Decision Sciences, is co-author of the book, Machine Learning for High-Risk Applications published by O'Reilly Media, Inc. in June 2023.
Long He, associate professor of decision sciences, published a paper titled "Taming the Long Tail: The Gambler’s Fallacy in Intermittent Demand Management" in Manufacturing & Service Operations Management (MSOM) journal. In this paper, Professor He and his co-authors propose a data-driven framework for the choice of “replenishment timing” and “replenishment quantity” for managing the inventory metrics of long-tail products where only small data are available.
Jennifer Merluzzi, associate professor of strategic management & public policy, is co-author of a paper with Professor Jirs Meuris of the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Business titled, "Devaluation by Association: Gender Diversity and Performance Recognition in Masculine Occupations," that has received the Best Paper on Environmental and Social Practices award from the Academy of Management’s Organization and Management Theory (OMT) Division. Winners of this annual award are selected for the way their research “advances our understanding of environmental and social dimensions of organizing.”
Joel Gehman, Lindner-Gambal Professor of Business Ethics and professor of strategic management & public policy, recently co-authored an article, "What Really Explains ESG Performance? Disentangling the Asymmetrical Drivers of the Triple Bottom Line," that was published in a special issue of the journal Organization & Environment, called "Nonfinancial Reporting and Real Sustainable Change." The editors announced that, with more than 6,000 downloads in the two months following its initial publication, it is the most downloaded article from the issue.
Vanessa Perry, vice dean for strategy, professor of marketing, and professor of strategic management and public policy, co-authored a paper, entitled “Algorithms for All: Has Digitalization in the Mortgage Market Expanded Access to Homeownership?” and presented findings as part of a symposium hosted by the Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies.
A paper co-authored by Professor Vikram Bhargava, assistant professor of strategic management and public policy, titled “Autonomous Vehicles and the Ethics of Driving,” was accepted for publication by Social Theory and Practice journal.
An article co-authored by Vikram Bhargava, assistant professor of strategic management and public policy, titled “Hiring, Algorithms, and Choice: Why Interviews Still Matter,” has been published in Business Ethics Quarterly.
Miguel Lejeune, professor of decision sciences at GW Business and professor of electrical and computer engineering at the School of Engineering & Applied Science (SEAS), has received the 2022 Best Paper Award from the Journal of Global Optimization for the paper: Data-driven distributionally robust chance-constrained optimization with Wasserstein metric. The paper was co-authored by Professor Ran Ji, a former GWSB PhD student.
The Global Financial Literacy Excellence Center (GFLEC) released the 2022 TIAA Institute-GFLEC Personal Finance Index (P-Fin Index) Report on Longevity Literacy. The report highlighted that one-half of American adults lack a basic understanding of how long people tend to live in retirement, a knowledge gap that can keep them from saving enough money that can last as long as they live. A webinar on Tuesday, January 17, titled “Connecting to Reimagine” shared more insights from the report.
Sanjay Jain, associate industry professor of decision sciences, presented a paper titled “A Tale of Three Simulations for Project Managers” at the 2022 Winter Simulation Conference (WSC) in December. WSC is the premier international forum for disseminating recent advances in the field of system simulation, with the principal focus on discrete-event simulation and combined discrete-continuous simulation. Professor Jain's paper will be published in the forthcoming WSC conference proceedings.
James Wade, Avram S. Tucker Endowed professor of strategy & leadership, has two papers that have been accepted for publication: “Racial disparity in leadership: Evidence of valuative bias in the promotions of National Football League Coaches” forthcoming in the American Journal of Sociology, and "Looking the Part: Racial Stereotypicality in Appearance Predicts Opposing Leadership Outcomes for Black and White Coaches in NCAA Football," forthcoming in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin (PSPB).
James Wade, Avram S. Tucker Endowed professor of strategy & leadership, has two papers that have been accepted for publication: “Racial disparity in leadership: Evidence of valuative bias in the promotions of National Football League Coaches” forthcoming in the American Journal of Sociology, and "Looking the Part: Racial Stereotypicality in Appearance Predicts Opposing Leadership Outcomes for Black and White Coaches in NCAA Football," forthcoming in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin (PSPB).
Howard Beales, professor emeritus of strategic management and public policy, co-authored a study titled, “An Information Economy Without Data,” supported by the Digital Advertising Alliance and Privacy for America.
Donald Buzinkai, teaching assistant professor of accountancy, co-authored a case study entitled “The Ex-Files: A Payroll Teaching Case,” which has been accepted for publication by Issues in Accounting Education.
N. Sharon Hill, associate professor of management, co-authored an article entitled, "Unpacking Virtual Work’s Dual Effects on Employee Well-Being: An Integrative Review and Future Research Agenda,” which was accepted for publication in the Journal of Management.
N. Sharon Hill, associate professor of management, provided a practitioner summary article, “Virtual Work Offers Pros and Cons for Women’s Careers,” which is based on a previous article she co-wrote with former doctoral student and current professorial lecturer in management, Isabel Villamor, was published by the Academy of Management (AOM)’s online magazine, Insights.
N. Sharon Hill, associate professor of management, co-authored an article entitled, "Leading Virtually,” which was accepted for publication by the journal Annual Review of Organizational Psychology and Organizational Behavior.
Vikram Bhargava, assistant professor of strategic management and public policy, co-authored a study entitled, "Hiring, Algorithms, and Choice: Why Interviews Still Matter,”which was accepted for publication by Business Ethics Quarterly.
Jorge Rivera, professor of strategic management and public policy and Ave Tucker Endowed Fellow, co-authored the book, "Business Adaptation to Climate Change," for the Organizations and the Natural Environment series by Cambridge University Press.
Refik Soyer, professor of decision sciences and statistics, recently co-authored the book, "Dynamic Time Series Models using R-INLA: An Applied Perspective."
Robert J. Weiner, professor of international business, public policy and public administration, and international affairs, co-authored the article, “The event study in international business research: Opportunities, challenges, and practical solutions.” The article was published in the July 2022 Journal of International Business Studies.
Vikram R. Bhargava, assistant professor of strategic management and public policy, co-authored the article, "Ethics of the Attention Economy: The Problem of Social Media Addiction," with Manuel Velasquez. This article has been selected as the Outstanding Article of the Year published in Business Ethics Quarterly. This award will be presented at the Society for Business Ethics annual meeting in Seattle.
N. Sharon Hill, associate professor of management, and Isabel Villamor, a recent management Ph.D. graduate (now at IESE School of Business, Spain), co-authored the Academy of Management Annals article, “Virtuality at Work: A Doubled-Edged Sword for Women’s Career Equality?”
James Bailey, Hochberg Professorial Fellow of Leadership Development and professor of management, authored the Harvard Business Review piece, “5 Self Sabotaging Traps to Avoid at Work” with co-author with John M. Mezias.
Outstanding Undergraduate Faculty Awards
Helet Botha, Visiting Assistant Professor, Strategic Management & Public Policy
Chad Ho, Associate Professor of Information Systems and Technology Management
Oded Rozenbaum, Assistant Professor of Accountancy
Jorge Walter, Professor of Strategic Management and Public Policy
Peter Vaill Doctoral Faculty Award
Angela Gore, Professor of Accountancy
Outstanding Master of Accountancy Faculty Award
Colin Linsley, Teaching Professor of Accountancy
Outstanding Accelerated Master of Business Administration Faculty Award
Kyle Welch, Assistant Professor of Accountancy
Outstanding Global Master of Business Administration Faculty Award
Gastón de los Reyes, Jr., Assistant Professor of Strategic Management and Public Policy
Outstanding Online & Healthcare Master of Business Administration Faculty Award
Ayman El Tarabishy, Deputy Chair of the Department of Management, Teaching Professor of Management, Faculty Deputy Director for Master’s in Human Resource Management
Outstanding Master of Human Resource Management Faculty Award
Margaret Ormiston, Associate Professor of Management
Outstanding Master of Interdisciplinary Business Studies Faculty Award
N. Andrew Cohen, Visiting Assistant Professor of Management
Outstanding Master in Management Faculty Award
David Halliday, Teaching Assistant Professor
Outstanding MS Business Analytics Faculty Award
Refik Soyer, Mitch Blaser Distinguished Scholar in Business Analytics, Director of the Institute for Integrating Statistics in Decision Sciences, Professor of Decision Sciences & Statistics
Master of Science in Finance Teaching Excellence Award, China Renmin Program
William C. Handorf, Professor of Finance
Master of Science in Finance Teaching Excellence Award, D.C. Program
George M. Jabbour, Associate Dean for Executive Education, Program Director for the Master of Science in Finance, Professor of Finance
Outstanding Master of Science in Government Contracts Faculty Award
Jessica Tillipman, Assistant Dean for Government Procurement of Law Studies, Government Contracts Advisory Council, Professorial Lecturer in Government Contracts Law, Practice & Policy
Outstanding Information Systems & Technology Management Achievement Faculty Award
Yixin Lu, Assistant Professor of Information Systems & Technology Management
Outstanding Master of Science in International Business Faculty Award
Danny Leipziger, Managing Director of The Growth Dialogue, Professor of Practice of International Business
Outstanding Master of Science in Project Management Faculty Award
Sanjay Jain, Associate Industry Professor of Decision Sciences
Outstanding Master of Science in Sport Management Faculty Award
Ellen M. Zavian, Professorial Lecturer in Law
Outstanding Master of Tourism Administration Faculty Award
Cevat Tosun, Director of MTA Program, Eisenhower Chair and Professor of Tourism Studies and Management
Rates of Interest Remain High in GWSB’s Research
This past year alone, GWSB’s thought leadership produced acclaimed, groundbreaking work that is advancing our understanding of the business world. Here are just some of the examples:
The work of the Global Financial Literacy Excellence Center (GFLEC) at GWSB moved into the spotlight with the launch of a new academic journal and four noteworthy awards for research and high-profile presentations around the world.
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“We are proud of our progress, but we also know much more must be done with research-based solutions to close financial well-being gaps,” said Annamaria Lusardi, University Professor of Economics & Accountancy and GFLEC founder and academic director. “Our goals are ambitious, but they are also achievable.”
The Journal of Financial Literacy and Wellbeing — the first academic journal in the field of financial literacy and financial education, spotlights rigorous research that informs academics, policymakers, and the private sector. Under coeditors Lusardi and Flore-Anne Messy, acting deputy director of the Directorate for Financial and Enterprise Affairs at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the open-access journal will publish three times a year.
The inaugural issue includes articles examining the link between financial education and the use of financial services; how financial education can improve citizenship; whether school-based financial education has a spillover effect on parents; and the usefulness of workplace financial education programs. Additional articles look at financial literacy and investments, including mortgages, cryptocurrency, and stocks.
The journal launch came in a year when GFLEC received the prestigious National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE) Impact Award. The center also received the Money Awareness and Inclusion Award (MAIA) for Best Academic Paper for Lusardi’s report, “Financial education affects financial knowledge and downstream behaviours,” which spotlighted a meta-analysis across 33 countries.
The 2022 Pearson Prize for Best Papers, given to the best journal article in Financial Management over the previous two years, singled out a report on financial literacy and financial resilience by coauthors Lusardi and World Bank economist Leora Klapper. The Kulp-Wright Book Award, meanwhile, went to Lusardi and coauthor Olivia Mitchell of the Wharton School of Business for Remaking Retirement: Debt in an Aging Economy.
New research from the center included results of the seventh wave of the TIAA Institute-GFLEC Personal Finance Index (P-Fin Index) and work with Edelman Financial Engines in conjunction with the “Fast Track to Financial Health” initiative deployed at a Fortune 25 company. The paper “Evaluating Deliberative Competence: A Simple Method with an Application to Financial Choice,” written by Lusardi, Sandro Ambuehl and B. Douglas Bernheim, was published in the American Economic Review in November 2022.
The center also showcased emerging research through its Cherry Blossom Financial Education Institute in Washington, D.C., the Asia Pacific Financial Education Institute in Singapore, and GFLEC’s Financial Literacy Seminar Series.
The awards and new research came as GFLEC doubled its efforts to use data-based evidence to inform policymakers and promote policy changes to improve financial well-being around the world. Lusardi presented on behalf of GFLEC at events organized by the United Nations, OECD, the International Monetary Fund, and European Parliament.
Lusardi appeared in the highly regarded 2022 Clarivate List of most-cited scholars.
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Lejeune joins faculty at GW Law, the School of Engineering and Applied Science, and the School of Medicine and Health Sciences in the “Foundations for Improving Resilience in the Energy Sector against Wildfires on Alaskan Lands” project, also known as FIREWALL. The initiative advances a cross-disciplinary approach to natural disasters, such as wildfires, and their broad implications for natural environments, built environments, and social systems.
“[Wildfires] affect the environmental side, the business side, local communities, the health care side. It is important to bring in a multifaceted approach in hope of getting actual — and many — solutions to such a very broad and wide problematique as wildfires,” said Lejeune.
The project falls under the NSF’s Navigating the New Arctic effort, a high-priority response to converging challenges in the rapidly-changing Arctic region. The NSF is funding research that deepens understanding of the economy, security, and resilience of Arctic communities.
The NSF grant is one of several Lejeune has received for his work, which applies mathematics, analytics, and optimization models to assess and mitigate risk in operations management.
Destructive wildfires in the Arctic — projected to increase in frequency, magnitude, and cost — are driven by a number of factors, including environmental change and expanded human interaction with wildland. In Alaska, wildfires dramatically impact energy grids, a factor that can be amplified by imprecise management of the energy network.
Black spruce, one of the most common trees in Alaska, is especially prone to violent wildfires, and small communities are often located close to forested areas. The state’s complex terrain, exposure to nature’s forces, and vulnerable infrastructure exacerbate the threat of wildfires and the resulting economic and social losses.
A goal of the research is to develop strategic solutions for indigenous communities and emergency responders. Lejeune is looking for mathematical models that can help predict when and where wildfires will appear, their magnitude, and what can be done to minimize the effect “so the communities can go back to work immediately.”
The longer-term objective, Lejeune explained, is to create models that can be used for wildfires and other types of natural disasters elsewhere in the world.
Job interviews are costly and time-consuming for both job candidates and businesses. Even more, research shows that interviewers are bad at predicting how well a new employee will perform and fit into the company. So why do firms continue the practice?
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"The straightforward answer is that we need to do interviews to find a candidate that fits the needs of the organization, the needs of the role,” said Vikram Bhargava, assistant professor of strategic management and public policy. “Except that there is an overwhelming body of behavioral research that shows that we are very bad at determining that. An alternative is algorithms, but they have their own problems with respect to different kinds of biases.”
Bhargava’s research finds that random hiring may be as effective as job interviews. However, there are other benefits that come from the interviews, including the prestige and satisfaction felt by employees involved in deciding who is hired.
“When human resources managers conceive of their roles as too strictly focused on efficiency, such as using algorithms for hiring, they risk losing something that is valuable: the intrinsic values of being able to choose whom we work with, the value of workplace relationships,” said Bhargava. “They risk losing something of moral value.”
He describes himself as an “analytical philosopher,” and his research addresses ethics and policy that emerge from the use of technology. His work includes the examination of issues related to technology addiction, autonomous vehicles, artificial intelligence, and the future of work.
Bhargava is also interested in how the speed and magnitude of social media outrage can drive demands for people to be fired, in some cases after a single transgression, something he finds troubling.
“In the business world, one of the things that’s easy to lose sight of is that there are a lot more options than firing. There are all types of intermediate options — trainings, demotion,” he said. “The most severe response is not always the most appropriate.”
Standing up for one’s employee is another option, he added.
Bhargava’s work appears in Business Ethics Quarterly, the Journal of Business Ethics, and publications of Cambridge University Press. Recent articles include: Hiring, Algorithms, and Choice: Why Interviews Still Matter; Autonomous Vehicles and the Ethics of Driving; and The Ethics of Employment-At-Will: An Institutional Complementarities Approach.
He was a speaker at the WSJ Risk and Compliance Forum in a session on “The Risks and Opportunities of ChatGPT.” And he was quoted in the Fortune magazine article titled “A major bank has banned ChatGPT—should your company follow suit?’’ and by WTTG-Fox5 in a segment on HR managers using artificial intelligence for hiring and firing.
For years, while researchers in the natural sciences parsed how climate change is affecting the world, GWSB has stood apart from other business schools in examining how corporations are impacted. “The Business School at GW and its Department of Management and Public Policy have been known around the world as a leader in studying how companies respond to environmental and social responsibility issues,” said Professor of Strategic Management and Public Policy Jorge Rivera.
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“We have a top ranking in this area by the Financial Times and The Economist. In the area of social responsibility and sustainability management, GW has been one of the top schools for 30 years,” said Professor Rivera.
GWSB continues to distinguish itself, in no small part thanks to the work of Rivera, the school’s Tucker-Endowed Fellow. His research looks at corporate adaptation to climate change as well as how natural disasters and industrial accidents affect foreign investment by multinationals. He also evaluates how green certification programs affect business competitiveness.
Fall 2022 saw the release of the new book Business Adaptation to Climate Change, coauthored by Rivera, Chang Hoon Oh of the University of Kansas, Jennifer Oetzel of American University, and GWSB alumna Viviane Wei Chen Clement, PhD ’17, who is a senior climate change specialist at the World Bank.
The book fills a gap in academic literature on business management. Rivera noted that the United States saw 130 natural disasters that each caused more than $1 billion in damages in 2021. With some types of insurance no longer available or affordable, business managers are paying attention.
The book looks at how companies respond to climate threats, how natural disasters affect their competitiveness, and even how some corporate adaptation is worsening climate change.
Companies are stepping forward to address social challenges — including poverty, sustainability, and racism — by tapping the expertise of professionals in corporate social responsibility (CSR). When the priorities of corporate leadership diverge from those of CSR professionals, however, the latter report tension and loneliness in the workplace.
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Assistant Professor of Strategic Management and Public Policy Vontrese Pamphile studies how those professionals cope with workplace fatigue, isolation, and the need for emotional release.
“There are people who work inside for-profit companies who really care about social issues. They care about addressing racism, community welfare, the environment… but leadership doesn’t always have those same concerns. They’re running a for-profit organization,” Pamphile said.
“Paradox Peers: A Relational Approach to Navigating a Business–Society Paradox,” published in the Academy of Management, spotlights Pamphile’s study, which found that CSR professionals at Fortune 500 companies are feeling lonely and stressed.
The research springboards from data collected in 2016 and follow-up contact with CSR professionals. Pamphile also conducted a separate study on chief diversity officers. She noted that the COVID-19 pandemic further intensified the isolation of chief diversity officers, people who manage corporate grantmaking, sustainability officers, and others at the forefront of corporate responses to social issues.
Pamphile said the most effective response by CSR professionals is to create or join peer networks, including with professionals in other companies. She said peer support makes CSR professionals more motivated and better at their jobs.
“They can help you let off steam, help you brainstorm ideas, and help you push forward,” Pamphile explained. “Virtual happy hours and calling people have become even more important.”
Pamphile said her findings can be applied broadly across career stages.
“I would advise young folks to invest the time in networking. Do those outreaches to build your network to have people to rely on when times get tough,” she said. “Young people certainly need a network to rely on, but so do advanced leaders. They are dealing with complex tensions.
“You can network with others without giving away trade secrets,” she added.
Two School of Business faculty members, Avram Tucker Distinguished Scholar and Professor of Marketing Herman Aguinis and University Professor of Economics and Accountancy Annamaria Lusardi, were named to Clarivate’s list of Highly Cited Researchers 2022. The annual list identifies academics who have shown significant influence in their fields. Aguinis and Lusardi were the only faculty at the university to earn the 2022 distinction.
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“The Clarivate’s Highly Cited Researchers list is a reminder of the high-impact research being generated at GWSB,” said Dean Anuj Mehrotra. “We are very fortunate to be associated with outstanding faculty like Professors Aguinis and Lusardi, who exemplify our mission as seekers and disseminators of knowledge.”
Herman has appeared on the Clarivate list for five consecutive years. His interdisciplinary work looks at organizational research methods and the global acquisition and deployment of talent in organizations. Lusardi, who appeared on Clarivate’s 2017 and 2021 lists, is a pioneer in the field of financial literacy and financial education. She is the founder and academic director of the Global Financial Literacy Excellence Center (GFLEC), the world’s leading incubator for financial literacy.
The Clarivate list identifies researchers whose influence is reflected through the publication of highly cited papers. The names are drawn from the publications that rank in the top one percent by citations for their fields in the Web of Science citation index.
The Center For Entrepreneurial Excellence (CFEE), a hub for education and research, came under new leadership, rebranded itself, and opened additional pathways for students to gain hands-on entrepreneurial and leadership experience.
“We have a very pronounced entrepreneurship community here at GW. And what an enormous goldmine we’re sitting on in terms of research from our faculty and content from our administration and faculty,” said Kathy Korman Frey, who took over the leadership of the center with the retirement of longtime director George Solomon, a professor of management. “A lot of that doesn’t reach the outside world to the extent that it could. Our student team had a good time unleashing some of those assets over the past year.”
CFEE advanced its mission through hands-on student experiences, new venture development, and award-winning programming for women students and their male allies. In December, it organized Pitch George, one of GW’s premier entrepreneurial initiatives. The elevator pitch competition provided personalized feedback and mentoring to its participants, as well as monetary prizes. The competition, which is included in class syllabi as a major assignment, provides students with an on-ramp to the university’s New Venture Competition, which is also sponsored by CFEE.
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During the 2022-2023 academic year, the center also responded to student requests to include ethical technology as a category in the competition, putting forward a special prize connected to the Be Kind Tech Fund administered by Globant Ventures. Korman Frey said tech ethics — from app privacy to online bullying — are a challenge for businesses. Globant supported the prize because of its interest in bringing forward new ideas and solutions.
In addition to Pitch George in the fall, CFEE hosted a spring Mini Pitch George and introduced some levity with a Worst Venture Competition, which invited students to submit Instagram images of their worst ideas. Winners received Pitch George T-shirts. “We’re talking about ideas like glow-in-the-dark toilet paper,” explained Korman Frey, a professorial lecturer of management.
CFEE’s Entrepreneurial Leadership Lab enabled three undergraduate and one graduate student—chosen through a competitive evaluation process—to lead major projects for the center, including a university-wide competition to develop a new CFEE logo as part of a rebrand. Students in the lab also co-moderated a George Talks Business panel in conjunction with International Women’s Day, co-developed curriculum for a live case studies project supported by Globant, and broadened awareness of GWSB entrepreneurial resources, from research to an interview series to women’s leadership factoids that were disseminated on the center’s social media channel.
Through the Sigma Nu Tau entrepreneurship honor society, CFEE also celebrated students at the “seed stage” of their entrepreneurial careers with Student Entrepreneurship Awards.
“All the entrepreneurship activities within GW start through the School of Business, which is the incubator for entrepreneurship,” Korman Frey said. She said CFEE’s next goal is to expand alumni engagement with the center and its students.
The School of Business added diversity and expertise to its teaching bench with the addition of 10 faculty members in fall 2022. The new faculty include three tenure-track professionals: Assistant Professor of Finance Chukwuma Dim, Assistant Professor of Strategic Management and Public Policy Everlyne Misati, and Assistant Professor of International Business Rodimiro Rodrigo.
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Dim has researched risks in public-private partnerships and infrastructure projects; he is also interested in the application of big data in finance and economics. The research of Misati, who teaches business ethics and the legal environment at GWSB, examines the firm-stakeholder relationship. Rodrigo, meanwhile, is an expert on the effects of automation on firms and workers.
Three other new faculty members join the Department of Management: Assistant Professor Denise Falchetti, Visiting Assistant Professor of Sport Management Meredith Geisler, and Teaching Assistant Professor Jungho Suh. Two new faculty members also add to the expertise in the Department of Information Systems and Technology Management: Assistant Professor Sunghun Chung and Visiting Assistant Professor Anju Wadhwa. Also new to the faculty expertise are Teaching Assistant Professor of Accountancy Donald Buzinkai and Teaching Assistant Professor of Management and Tourism Faith Bradley.
What happens when businesses make public statements about what they value, from innovation to diversity, but fail to live out those ideals inside the workplace?
How that dissonance affects workers — including how they rate their employers — is the subject of high-visibility research by Vontrese Pamphile, an assistant professor of strategic management and public policy.
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“Think about diversity-based values. In the last two years, companies have started claiming, ‘We value diversity, equity and inclusion, this is a core value,’ but without really doing the work to integrate those values into the day-to-day of their organizations,” Pamphile said. “There is a disconnect there.”
Another example is companies that use rainbow logos during Pride month but do nothing internally to support LGBTQ+ employees.
“From the outside, you might not be able to tell what’s going on inside the workplace,” said Pamphile. “But how does it impact employees? How do they react when the companies say they value something but they don’t act that out?”
In online worker reviews, such as on the Glassdoor website, businesses whose values and actions do not align are seen as inauthentic, which could cause backlash from employees, Pamphile explained.
“Maybe you could fool a consumer, but you can’t necessarily fool an employee because they’re there every day seeing what goes on inside an organization.”
Pamphile also found that being authentic was not always sufficient. Dissatisfaction can still arise if professed corporate values do not mesh with employees’ ideals. She used the example of a company that was viewed by employees as authentic but which espoused values that did not include innovation, something prized by employees.
“When you state your values, what’s at the core of the company, you ought to think about what you’re stating,” Pamphile said. “Consider how employees perceive those values. Do they resonate with them, is it something they value?”
When employees’ values fit with a company’s values, there are multiple positive outcomes, including job satisfaction and lower employee turnover.
Pamphile contributed to “The (Bounded) Role of Stated-Lived Value Congruence and Authenticity in Employee Evaluations of Organizations,” which appeared in Organization Science. She also contributed to the Academy of Management journal article “Being Real By Myself? The Dynamic Relationality of Authenticity,” which explored the idea of being, feeling, and seeming authentic at work.
Louis Rosenfeld Distinguished Scholar and Professor of Marketing Donna Hoffman, a renowned scholar on consumer experience and psychology, offers expertise and advice to shoppers.
Associate Professor of Decision Sciences Long He is interested in how technology, innovation and, in the case of his research, mathematical models contribute to the efficiencies of service delivery in urban areas. His research looks at smart city operations, supply chain management, and business analysis.
“I am interested in smart city operations and the service providers who affect our daily life,” said He. A recent project looked into how mathematical models can be used to better manage shared-car services using electric vehicles. Specifically, He looked at the operations of Car2Go in San Diego, California, and the challenges of keeping charged cars ready and within reach of people using the short-term car rental service.
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A paper highlighting the results of the study earned him the 2022 Best Publication Award from the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS) in the area of energy, natural resources, and the environment (ENRE). The ENRE awards are given annually to the best refereed journal article. Another journal article that He collaborated on was awarded in the category of energy.
“Smart city service providers try to make their operations smarter. The specific area that I look at is urban transportation and logistics—things like car-sharing and Amazon last-mile delivery,” explained He. “I want to make those operations more efficient. I look at the operation of those systems and try to develop a mathematical optimization model.”
For the Car2Go project, He identified key factors affecting efficiency, including how many charging stations were needed for the electric car fleet, where they should be located, whether they should be public or private charging stations, drivers’ travel patterns, and the battery-charge level necessary for a vehicle to satisfy customer requirements. He also looked at how or whether larger batteries or speedier charging stations would affect business costs and efficiencies.
He found that Car2Go could have served almost 95 percent of its total demand with just a few privately owned charging sites and proactive repositioning of the shared cars. He said the same optimization model can be applied to electric bike-sharing and scooter-sharing systems.
He, who watches business trends, is now looking at online retailers’ use of drones for the final delivery leg of products that are trucked from warehouses.
“Smart Urban Transport and Logistics: A Business Analytics Perspective” in the journal Production and Operations Management, is among the other papers Professor He has recently coauthored.
One of the long-term results of the COVID-19 pandemic is an intense interest in the hybrid-and-virtual workforce, a research area where Associate Professor of Management N. Sharon Hill has been carving out expertise for more than two decades.
She has assembled a new research agenda to guide scholars in the area and created practical applications for businesses and government organizations with a virtual or hybrid labor force. Hill also is the driver behind an annual university seminar, Building Research Interdisciplinarily to Develop Gender Equity, or GW-Bridge. The initiative, which saw its funding renewed for a third year, is led by women scholars at four GW schools. It connects faculty who examine equity issues across disciplines.
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Professor Hill is looking at how virtual and hybrid work affect women’s careers.
Hill, who teaches courses on organizational change, teamwork, the virtual and hybrid workforce, and human resources management, received the 2022 Office of the Vice President for Research (OVPR) Award for Research Mentorship in recognition of her support of doctoral students and their research.
“What I find really exciting about working with students is helping them discover their own research passion and research identity and guiding them through that process,” she said. “At the same time, I get to learn from them. As we work together, we look for synergies in our research so it’s a growth opportunity for me, as well.”
By way of example, she pointed to one of her past doctoral students, Isabel Villamor, PhD ’22, whose research led to a joint paper with Hill in the Academy Management Annals.
Hill has also coauthored articles on virtual workers’ wellbeing in the Journal of Management, virtual leadership in the Annual Review of Organizational Psychology and Organizational Behavior, the culture of hybrid teams in Group Processes & Intergroup Relations, research on virtual work in the Academy of Management Annals, the mitigation of negative effects on team cohesion in Group and Organization Management, and how to empower leadership and virtual team collaboration in Personnel Psychology.
Before joining GW in 2008, Hill worked in the private sector managing multinational work teams for Dupont, GE, and other large companies.
In and Out of the Classroom, Students Focus on Innovation and Success
Students sit at the heart of the School of Business and their student experience was deepened and enriched in the 2022-2023 academic year through curriculum changes, the build-out of student organizations, and continuing opportunities to sharpen in-demand market skills.
Degree programs responded to shifting employer needs. A new career-ready Master of Accountancy program added specialization expertise, while the Master of Marketing incorporated deeper Big Data skills to give students a competitive advantage in the workplace.
Student organizations, back in force with both on-campus and virtual activities, expanded their reach — in membership numbers and in scope. Mentorship, interview preparation, peer-to-peer evaluations, webinars, workshops, and annual conferences became more commonplace. Student leaders said the goal was to provide added value to the student experience.
“Student organizations bring a benefit to GWSB. They create a culture that adds value to the school. Through networking opportunities, they provide and the community they create, they also elevate the value of the university,” said Marketing Club President Aishwarya Radhakrishnan (Global MBA ’24).
Students also took advantage of a spectrum of offerings through the Office of Undergraduate Programs. Alumni support provided critical underpinning for those industry roundtables, business case competitions, career treks, and networking opportunities. The F. David Fowler Career Center, meanwhile, unveiled its third Community of Practice (CoP). The no-credit, career-enhancing CoP interlocks with the MBA in Security Technology Transition (MBA-STT) and joins the ongoing CoPs in consulting and finance.
Alumni also provided other skill-building support. For example, separate gifts from GW Investment Institute Advisory Board member Steve Ross, BBA ’81, and Oscar Pulido, BBA ’01, provided students with access to top analytics tools used by finance and investment firms. Faculty built the tools into class assignments.
“Being involved in student leadership has had a tremendous impact on both my personal and professional development. I’ve been exposed to new ideas. I’ve gained confidence. And it has grounded me in my vision for my career and what I look for in the workplace.”
President of Business Pride Network (BPN)
A gift from GW Investment Institute Advisory Board member Steve Ross (BBA ’81) is enabling students to tap data and analysis that deepen their research as they invest endowment capital at the university. Ross’s gift of a subscription to FactSet also enables students to become adept on a top tool used by finance and investment firms.
Ross donated $30,000 to the GW Investment Institute for use on a year’s subscription to FactSet, giving students — and other members of the GWSB community — access to the database from their personal computers.
“Access to FactSet services through GW has been highly useful for me,” said Victoria Akinwande, BS in Finance ’24. “As a student with a strong interest in investment banking, using the FactSet platform at an academic level has prepared me for my upcoming internship since the program is widely used by most major investment banks. “This expansion of available resources for students further exemplifies GW’s commitment to providing concrete skills and resources to serve students in the real world,” she added.
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GW Investment Institute Director Rodney Lake said FactSet analysis — predominantly for equity-linked research — is built into students’ weekly class assignments in the institute. The assignments qualify students for certification showing they are trained on the FactSet system.
“FactSet is an industry standard for people working in the money-management business,” said Lake, who is also vice dean for Undergraduate Programs. “Access to FactSet allows our students to do their research wherever they are — in the library, in their dorm, anywhere.”
The subscription is also available to others on the GW campus, including students, faculty, and staff outside the School of Business. Lake said Ross, senior vice president at RBC Wealth Management, hoped his gift will encourage other alumni to fund future years of the subscription.
In late 2022, GWSB alumni Oscar Pulido, BBA ’01, and Dan Someck, BBA ’06, facilitated student access to BlackRock’s Aladdin portfolio management technology, making GW one of just 11 schools in the world with this type of collaboration with BlackRock. Meanwhile, students are connected to Bloomberg analysis through 12 Bloomberg terminals within the GW Investment Institute Lab.
Through various courses in the GW Investment Institute, students manage $6.5 million of the university’s endowment, giving them an extraordinary hands-on experience. Over the years, their portfolio has done well relative to the S&P 500 Index, their primary benchmark.
“This experiential learning has been a great success for us,” Lake said. “We’re a leader in giving students this kind of experience and, when it comes to business schools with similar opportunities, we’re one of the better organized — in the top 25 across the country — because we build the experience into our graduate and undergraduate curriculum. We’re not a club, we’re an actual class.”
Lake said access to the new portfolio management tools comes at a time when students are addressing unusual developments in the investment arena.
“We’ve been through big macro events, most recently the impact of COVID and the financial stimulus that is coming in,” Lake said. “Now we have inflation, so this is a tremendous time for students to be learning about companies. It’s been four decades since we had to navigate this type of inflation.”
In other developments the GW Investment Institute:
- Plans to issue $50,000 in awards to its top 10 students in 2023, bringing to $250,000 the total given to 50 students through the Ramsey Scholars program since its inception.
- Launched an annual scholarship for female undergraduates involved in the institute’s activities. The scholarship was established by Barbara Gural, MBA ’82.
- Recruited and coached a student team — in partnership with the Office of Undergraduate Programs — to compete in the McGill International Portfolio Challenge. The team placed among the top 25 globally.
- Raised funds for a student to participate in the Cornell Women in Investing Conference in New York.
The school has earned praise from numerous outlets for its inclusion efforts.
GW students in the master's of sports management program gain invaluable opportunities in the sports industry.
Professor Scheherazade Rehman’s Age of Globalization classes visited the international financial institution in October.
The George Washington University School of Business’ 4+1 combined degree program is expanding to include Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science students from Columbian College of Arts and Sciences, Elliott School of International Affairs, School of Engineering and Applied Science and the Milken Institute School of Public Health.
This means that students across these schools can join GW Business students in earning a bachelor's degree and a master’s degree in five years.
"The GW Business 4+1 Program responds to employers' call for multidisciplinary education," said GW Business Dean Anuj Mehrotra. "It provides students with the opportunity to graduate with complementary degrees that position graduates with competitive qualifications as they enter the job market."
Even before the regular fall term officially starts, MBA students report to GWSB for the Runway program. The required three-week mini-orientation, which includes coursework, is set up to give incoming MBAs a quick dive into the skills and knowledge they will need for internships.
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“They are going to be in the job market looking for internships in the early fall, so this gives them a kick-start,” said Susan Kulp, director of MBA Programs.
The for-credit Runway initiative was launched in 2020 after the GWSB curriculum was revised, but the COVID-19 pandemic forced it onto an online format. The 2022-2023 academic year marked the first time Runway unfolded in person.
“We worked with all our stakeholders — from students all the way to the Dean’s Board of Advisors and Dean’s Corporate Council — to understand what our students needed to be successful in the current business environment,” said Kulp, a professor of accountancy. “We also talked with the career center to determine when they needed particular skills.”
She said mini immersion classes in accounting, finance, communications, business strategy, and interview preparation are among the Runway offerings. Students also work with career services to map out their long-term career plans.
“It’s part traditional orientation with social events — and an academic component to build quantitative skills,” Kulp said of the program, which runs Monday to Friday for three weeks leading into the fall semester.
One of the most popular Runway courses gives students a jump on strategic management through a web-based game developed by Teaching Associate Professor of Strategic Management & Public Policy David Halliday.
“I picked flying cars — electrical vertical takeoff and landing vehicles — for the game,” Halliday said, “because it’s an emerging area right now in the auto industry and we can have some fun with it. MBAs love the interactive gaming.”
The idea behind the game is that auto manufacturers compete on product price and quality. Students are assigned to flying car brands. They then stake out investment and production strategies they hope will bring them a competitive advantage and domination of the market.
Other GWSB professors have spoken with Halliday about creating games for their courses. Halliday has also been in discussions about developing the flying car game for use at other universities.
Associate Professor of Strategic Management and Public Policy Jennifer Merluzzi teaches the Runway strategic management course that uses Halliday’s game.
“The simulation is a really cool thing to fit into the Runway program. It’s super engaging,” Merluzzi said. “It can also be the first time students are assigned to work in groups, so they get to know one another right away, but in a fun way.”
Merluzzi said strategic management can be a challenging course, which is why it is often scheduled at the end of an MBA program.
“MBA students come from different work experiences and industries. If they don’t come from a business background, this helps level the playing field early on,” she said. “Strategy is usually case-based and going over and thinking through business cases can be exhausting, so you want to think of clever ways of getting the information across.“
Kulp described Runway as an intense start to an MBA program but added that it also helps students meet and bond before they begin their regular program of classes.
GWSB has reenvisioned its Master of Accountancy (MAccy) program to require that students pursue one of two majors toward their degree, enabling them to show employers a greater level of specialized expertise within the accountancy field.
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“This gives more depth to their MAccy,” said Vice Dean for Graduate Programs Shivraj Kanungo, who noted that the change came in response to the preferences of both students and employers.
Students in the MAccy program now designate either an accountancy major or a STEM-designated accounting analytics major. Kanungo said the latter prepares students for careers that require both accounting and data analytics skills.
The rising demand for executives with tech knowledge sparked GWSB to unveil a Global STEM MBA and Accelerated STEM MBA designed with international students in mind. Now that the first cohort has finished the program and post-pandemic fine-tuning is in place, the degree is revealing the full extent of its appeal.
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“I wanted the degree because I wanted to get that fear out of my head that I don’t come from a STEM background and I don’t know anything about it. But a lot of good schools still don’t offer a STEM MBA,” said Raagini Bhalla, a student from India who will complete the GWSB degree in May. “That’s what brought me to GW.”As the business environment evolves, both students and employers are interested in education opportunities that hug the intersection of technical and quantitative fields. Shivraj Kanungo, vice dean for graduate programs, said the STEM MBA provides international students with two years of practical training in the United States. He said the degree develops “executives who understand technology’s value in business management.”
“I’ve been at the school since 1988, and we’ve always had an innovative streak. When we got the signal from both students and employers that a STEM-designated MBA is the MBA of the future, we worked to make our students industry ready,” said Kanungo, who also is an associate professor of decision sciences and director of the MS in Interdisciplinary Business Studies Program.Bhalla said the STEM MBA at the GW School of Business stood out when she was seeking a degree to complement her bachelor’s in psychology from the University of Delhi and master’s in human resources and organization from the London School of Economics. She hoped to interweave STEM and marketing courses.
“At GW, there is an extensive list of courses you can take, certificates you can add on, and the location is great — a top city like Washington, D.C. It is a very well ranked business program in a global city where you meet people from all walks of life,” she said.The consulting abroad project — or CAP — required of MBA students was another plus.“ The CAP was an opportunity to move to an international country for two weeks, experience that culture working with an international client, and learn even more,” Bhalla explained. Her CAP unfolded in Dubai, where she and two other MBA STEM students worked with jewelry company DAMAS on the feasibility of an environmental, social, and governance (ESG) project in the United Arab Emirates.
One of the most striking MBA STEM benefits for international students involves an exception to F1 Visa rules. Traditionally, a F1 Visa allows international students to stay for one year in the United States after graduation. International students in STEM-designated programs can stay for up to three years without a sponsor.Bhalla described the STEM MBA program as “extremely intense.”
“The first year was required courses, and they equipped me and everyone else with the foundations of business. There were also a lot of courses in STEM — data analytics, finance, accounting, even marketing operations. All these courses had a lot of math and used software programs,” she said.The second year, she said, is proving “challenging and interesting” with leeway to take electives.
GW’s STEM MBA and Accelerated STEM MBA can be paired with certificates in other STEM-linked specialized areas to deepen management knowledge and make graduates more competitive in the job market. STEM MBA students can also take advantage of the school’s dual degrees. GWSB offers a dual MBA/MS degree in business analytics and information systems technology, as well as a joint MBA/MS degree in finance and applied finance.
Bhalla, who is looking for career opportunities in marketing and product management, called the STEM MBA program “a rewarding experience.”“It’s extremely challenging and, for people like me who come from non-STEM backgrounds, it’s an opportunity to venture into STEM,” she said. “There are people who want to do an MBA to change their career paths. This is the perfect opportunity for students like that.”
We live in a data-driven world, and top corporations are investing heavily in marketing driven by both qualitative and quantitative research. GWSB has responded by building more advanced analytical skills into its Master of Marketing program, giving graduates a competitive advantage as they enter a hyper-competitive workforce.
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“The goal is to equip students with everything they need to work in marketing,” said Teaching Assistant Professor of Marketing Johan Ferreira.
There was a time when it was nice to have digital knowledge and expertise if you were in marketing. Now the digital component is essential.” Faculty in the School of Business are ahead of the curve on technology and that is keeping students’ learning at the forefront in a fast-evolving arena. Where others might see a threat from artificial intelligence (AI), for example, GWSB students are embracing it as a valuable marketing tool.
ChatGPT and other technologies of today mirror the emergence of the search engines of the 1990s in which the answers were only as good as the questions. GWSB students are gaining experience in wielding new tech tools responsibly.
Ferreira said the master’s program stands out for its connectivity with the rest of the School of Business. “Our professors will advise students in whatever marketing context they need. We leverage our school’s strong decision sciences program. And we provide experiential learning,” he explained.
In addition to the essential brand management courses in marketing, GWSB students study marketing analytics, marketing strategies in digital environments, artificial intelligence and machine learning, and other Big Data areas. The program is drawing students from around the world.
“China is one market around the world where you need a graduate degree [in marketing] so we do not have a problem attracting its students,” Ferreira said. “I have students from Europe, from the Middle East, from the Far East, from Africa, and from Latin America.
GW and GWSB students in other degree programs are also enrolling in graduate marketing courses they see as workforce-relevant.
Ferreira said deep faculty expertise underpins the program. “We have faculty who love this stuff. They live it and breathe it,” he said. “For some time, we have been building a competence focused on consumers in digital environments.”
Faculty members in the Department of Marketing have strong anchors in digital marketing and analytics. Donna Hoffman and Thomas Novak, for example, direct the Center for the Connected Consumer while Gil Appel’s research focuses on applied digital marketing analytics. Adjunct Professor Hal Anderson, meanwhile, brings his industry experience to courses in database management, automated marketing, and marketing intelligence.
A women-founded thrift shop started by four GW students incorporates socially conscious values into its business model.
Anas Mheir Alsaadi, founder of the GW Entrepreneurship Club, aims to make a difference in the world through entrepreneurship.
Military students, veterans, and their family members continue choosing GWSB for their degree programs, accounting for about 10 percent of all military students at the George Washington University. Faculty said business degree programs leverage service members’ existing skill sets — including leadership and teamwork experience — while the presence of military students deepens in-class discussions.
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Andrew Sonn, director of Military and Veteran Student Services at the George Washington University, said service members are part of a diverse group with varying academic needs and aspirations. However, he noted that MBA degrees have proven particularly attractive to them.
“The MBA program allows people in military culture to understand methodologies and business. They already have an understanding of leadership and operations,” Sonn explained. He said military-linked students seek business degrees to help advance their military careers, to move to private sector careers as they transition out of military service, or to launch entrepreneurial operations.
In addition, the school’s superlative reputation in international business and the ability to take courses at both GWSB and the Elliott School of International Affairs are magnets for military members whose deployments have taken them to other countries.
In fall 2022, of the 1,087 military-linked students at the university, about 100 were enrolled at GWSB. Although faculty are not told which students come from military backgrounds, in-class discussions can make that clear.
“All our students bring their experience to the classroom, but the students with military backgrounds do bring a different perspective, a different type of leadership, a different type of diligence,” said Professor of Accountancy Susan Kulp, who directs the MBA Programs. “That adds to the learning in the classroom.”
She said military students also add diversity to the classroom, geographically, and through their experiences. She said she has had MBA students with combat-related disabilities and single mothers who are in the military. “We offer an inclusive, supportive community. Those students jump in and they are integrated within minutes,” Kulp said.
Faculty talk about two types of military students pursuing MBAs: career military, often active duty, and students who are preparing for civilian careers once they transition out of the service.
“We’ve had career military who combine business education with their experience to help them move up in the military,” Kulp said. “We’ve also had students who are exiting the military. They come with core skills and are looking for a complete change.”
Sonn said GW’s broad support of veterans and other military students makes the School of Business attractive. Unlike some other universities, GW puts no cap on the number of Yellow Ribbon students it enrolls each year, it has a Military Community Center, and it is one of only 100 schools with U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs staff assigned to help students navigate their educational benefits and provide career guidance.
Sonn said GW stands out as one of the largest private research universities in terms of military enrollment. The university’s location is also a plus.
“There are so many military installations near our campus, including Quantico and the Pentagon, and the Beltway Bandits — the military contractors — are nearby,” Sonn explained. “At the same time, we afford a lot of good networking opportunities. And, naturally, we see a lot of military-connected individuals who continue their security clearances through work with consulting groups.”
Kulp said the flexibility of a general degree like an MBA opens doors to nonprofit work, corporate careers, government positions, or consulting — and GWSB provides a bridge to those careers.
“We are in the nation’s capital. I don’t think it’s an accident that military students are attracted to that. One of the parts of our strategies is mixing government business and nonprofit work, and I think military students gravitate to that,” Kulp said. “That mix and our location make us attractive.”
GWSB has a long history of providing degrees to military students. Among its notable graduates are two generals who each served as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff: Gen. Colin Powell and Gen. John Vessey Jr. Powell earned an MBA in 1971. Vessey received a Master of Science in Business Administration in 1965.
Pitch George, an elevator pitch competition, hands out thousands of dollars in startup capital to winning teams. This single-round competition, open to students across the university, was a smaller, more casual and less intense version of Pitch George, which serves as a springboard to GW’s signature New Venture Competition. The New Venture Competition enables students, faculty, staff, and alumni to compete for nearly half a million dollars in prizes as they develop, test, and launch startup businesses and social ventures.
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A computer-controlled robot to handle fragile biological samples in a laboratory. A restaurant group focused on Basque cheesecake. An app that offers diners the full wine list at a restaurant and provides wait staff with details on vintages and pairings.
These student-created business plans emerged as winners at the Mini Pitch George competition organized by the Center for Entrepreneurial Excellence (CFEE). The March competition provided spring semester students from entrepreneurship-related courses with expert feedback on their business ideas. Some GWSB professors also integrated Mini Pitch George into their course curriculum as an educational experience.
Mini Pitch George’s first-place award went to Liquid-Handling Robot, a computer controlled robot developed by a group of biomedical engineers to handle small live biological samples in a lab. Runners up were Kenny’s Cheesecakes, which envisioned a chain of U.S. retail shops selling fresh Basque cheesecake, and the WineNot! app providing comprehensive wine lists to match restaurant offerings.
Other business ideas included:
- Drop-Guard, a hand-made insert designed to prevent items from falling between the middle console and front seats of a car;
- Travel-Assist, an app integrating all forms of transit, as well as hotels and other reservations, onto one internet application;
- Bash Dash party-planning platform;
- Yournament, which provides templates for customized 3D-printed Christmas decorations;
- Dateship dating app that connects students with similar interests within a close geographic proximity;
- Circinius, a software company that uses artificial intelligence and machine learning to streamline and personalize travel experiences;
- The sustainable fashion app Eye, which works with existing clothes in a closet to create stylish outfits.
GWSB-Affiliated Student Organizations
In addition to the student organizations linked to the School of Business, the university overall has more than 400 student organizations.
- School of Business Undergraduate Student Organizations
- 180 Degrees Consulting
- Alpha Kappa Psi
- American Marketing Association (AMA)
- Ascend GWU
- Beta Alpha Psi
- Business Pride Network
- Capitol Advertising
- Commercial Real Estate Network (CREN)
- Corean Undergraduate Business Organization (CUBO)
- Delta Sigma Pi
- Finance and Investments Club (FIC)
- GW DATA
- GW Fashion & Business Association
- GW Socially Responsible Investment Fund
- GW Women In Business (GWWIB)
- Undergraduate International Business Association
- Multicultural Business Student Association (MBSA)
- MZZ Ventures
- Sports Business Association (SBA)
- Undergraduate Consulting Group (UCG)
- Women in Finance Alliance (WIFA)
- School of Business Graduate Student Organizations
Black MBA Association
Graduate Finance Society
GW Forté Fellows
GW MBA Marketing Club
GW Project Management Association
GW Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) Student Chapter
MBA Association (MBAA)
MBA Business Analytics Club
National Association of Asian MBAs (NAAMBA)
Real Estate Investment and Development Organization (REIDO)
Sports Business Association
Tourism for Tomorrow
National Association of Women MBAs
GW SHRM Student Chapter
Around the World, the GWSB Community Showed Its Support
Alumni elevated their engagement with the School of Business and its students by taking part in the high-profile GW Business and Policy Forum, participating in gatherings in the United States and abroad, mentoring students, and continuing their generous financial support, including during a record-breaking GW Giving Day.
“Since the pandemic, alumni events have been held in Washington, D.C., New York, and London bringing together graduates from different corners of the globe to deepen the connection to their alma mater,” said Associate Director of Alumni Relations Benjamin Donnelly. “Through shared experiences, insightful discussions, and meaningful networking opportunities, alumni and the school have reinforced this bond to kindle a collective spirit of collaboration, inspiration, and support for the students, one another, and the institution.”
Alumni appeared as panelists, presenters, and participants at the GW Business & Policy Forum, a leadership discussion focused on the resilience of the digital ecosystem and the mitigation and prevention of cybersecurity attacks. The forum examined the role academia, industry, and government can play in addressing one of the greatest risks to national and economic security.
Distinguished alumni were also in the spotlight at the unveiling of the GW Business Entrepreneurial Hall of Fame, which inducted 12 inaugural members — 10 alumni and two faculty members — during an awards ceremony in March. Dean Anuj Mehrotra said the Hall of Fame celebrates alumni whose careers exemplify the mindset of entrepreneurship and innovation taught at GWSB.
Alumni were instrumental in student career treks and professional development, inviting students to their businesses, speaking with them about their industries, and serving as mentors. They also were generous with their philanthropy, helping to push GWSB over its goal during a record-breaking GW Giving Day.
At the same time, alumni and faculty generosity boosted the Rafael Lucea Global Experiential Fund, positioning it to become an endowed fund that provides stipends to help talented MBA students work on professional consultancy projects abroad.
“Alumni have different ways they give back. A lot come to events. They may occasionally get requests for surveys related to school rankings. Some volunteer their time, and some volunteer their wealth,” said Donnelly. “Those who may not have time to volunteer or mentor make donations or support a scholarship.”
The school is working to provide alumni with even greater engagement opportunities, including through off-campus presentations by faculty members. For example, Professor of International Business Robert Weiner, a frequently sought media source for petroleum industry developments, met with alumni and select students to discuss oil market turmoil brought on by the invasion of Ukraine.
Donnelly said work is underway to step up the number of faculty presentations to alumni in the coming academic year.
“One of the strengths of the School of Business is how well connected the alums are and how very willing they are to show the way for students — to show, for example, how students can get from being in a classroom in Duquès Hall to working in a high-rise in Manhattan.”
Associate Director of Alumni Relationss
The inaugural GW Business & Policy Forum brought hundreds of policy and industry leaders in the cybersecurity sphere together at a university positioning itself to be the epicenter of cybersecurity education and research for panels and keynote discussions on how the private and public sectors can come together to address the ever-evolving landscape and implications cybersecurity has for global business, markets and regulations.
The annual Industry Roundtables at GWSB kicked off again in the fall 2022 semester with a gathering that enabled undergraduate students to hear from recruiters and business leaders, among them several alumni, about career pathways and opportunities. That Sept. 23 event was followed two months later with an industry roundtable for graduate students.
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Industry Roundtables were created to enable students to take part in in-depth discussions about industries, business trends, and workforce needs.“It was incredibly helpful to speak with different industry leaders and gain insights into their perspectives in their fields and career paths,” said Lily Jane Galbraith, a junior majoring in business with a minor in political science. “I really enjoyed the conversations I had... and I learned so much about networking opportunities.”
Roundtables in past years were limited to graduate students and led to internship and job opportunities. Their successful outcomes led to the introduction of roundtables for undergraduate students in the 2021-2022 academic year.
School of Business alumni, faculty, administrators, parents, and students responded in force during GW Giving Day to push the school above its goal for the fundraising rush that ran for 24 hours beginning at noon on April 4.GWSB raised $174,389 from 265 donors and helped break the university’s record for the highest number of donations in a 24-hour period. Overall, 3,200 donors contributed $1.28 million during GW’s third annual Giving Day.
The trustee emeritus and Leadership Advisory Council member is known as a trailblazer in loan and high-yield bond markets.
Oscar Pulido and Dan Someck of global investment manager BlackRock facilitated asset management technology access for GW finance students.
Women’s basketball player and accountancy major Faith Blethen used her skillsets to land a summer internship at Deloitte.
The quantitative investment portfolio manager is also an adviser with GWSB’s Investment Institute.
The School of Business honored 12 distinguished alumni and faculty members during an awards event to inaugurate the GW Business Entrepreneurial Hall of Fame.
“This Entrepreneurial Hall of Fame provides us with an opportunity to reflect on the many ways that entrepreneurship benefits our society at-large,” GW President Mark Wrighton said at the induction ceremony in late March. “Throughout our nation’s history, entrepreneurship has been synonymous with economic growth and social mobility.”
The first inductees included 10 alumni, one of whom was honored posthumously: Charles R. Bendit (BBA ’75); Mitchell E. Blaser (BBA ’73); Kenneth Chaletzky (BBA ’71); Antwanye E. Ford (MS ’93); the late George Moore (DBA ’78); Angela Moore (MBA ’83); W. Russell Ramsey (BBA ’81, HON ’14); LaJuanna Russell (MBA ’98); Susie Selby (MBA ’85); and Daniel B. Simons (BBA ’92).
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Also inducted into the Hall of Fame were Professor Emeritus of Management George Solomon and, posthumously, former chair of the Department of Management Erik Winslow. The two faculty members co-founded GWSB’s Center for Entrepreneurial Excellence (CFEE); Solomon served as its director for many years. Solomon was also one of the first people to earn a doctorate in entrepreneurship and small business management from a major accredited school of business when he graduated from GW in 1982. The Erik K. Winslow and Deana and Gerald Stempler Research Fund, established by Winslow, provides financial support to graduate students seeking careers as entrepreneurs.
“At the School of Business, we are committed to ensuring that our students develop an entrepreneurial mindset complemented by core business skills and the capacities for innovation that are necessary to solve key global and local business and societal problems,” said Dean Anuj Mehrotra, adding that the school was excited to celebrate “a group of individuals who have exemplified these attributes and the spirit of entrepreneurship and innovation throughout their lives.”
Bendit serves on the GW Board of Trustees and is co-CEO of Taconic Partners, a real estate development firm he co-founded in 1997. He is also a former member of the advisory board for GWSB’s Center for Real Estate and Urban Analysis (CREUA).
Blaser, chair of the GWSB Board of Advisors, is co-founder and co-CEO of Bermuda-based Mosaic Insurance. He was also a founding executive of Ironshore, a commercial insurer that became a global brand under his leadership and was acquired by Liberty Mutual Group. He has been a generous supporter of the school for several decades and played a leadership role in the launch of GW’s Business & Policy Forum, which brought together experts from government, industry, and academia to discuss cybersecurity risks and solutions.
Chaletzsky co-founded Copy General printing company in 1979, not long after graduating from GW. In the decades that followed, the company expanded to Europe and reshaped to meet the demands of the digital age. Chaletzsky sits on the GWSB Board of Advisors and led a committee on infrastructure improvements at the school.
Ford is president and CEO of information technology and management consulting firm Enlightened, which he launched in 1999. He is also managing partner of the commercial real estate firm, Prolightened. He has served in leadership roles at the U.S. Black Chambers, the District of Columbia Chamber of Commerce, the District of Columbia Workforce Investment Council, and other organizations.
Angela Moore is managing partner of Ravensdale Capital, which supports early stage businesses and startups in the tech industry. Her husband, the late George Moore, was a pioneer in anchoring data and data analytics as an industry through the two successful companies he founded: National Decision Systems and Targus Information. Both the Moores were named Honorary Commanders of the Order of the British Empire for services to economic development and philanthropy in Northern Ireland.
Ramsey is co-founder of the Friedman, Billings, Ramsey Group investment firm and founder, chair, and CEO of the Ramsey Asset Management hedge fund. He was awarded an honorary degree from GW in 2014 and served two terms as chair of the GW Board of Trustees. Ramsey played a pivotal role in the launch of the GW Investment Institute at the School of Business and remains chair of its governing board.
Russell is founder, president, and CEO of Business Management Associates. She also sits on the Women Impacting Public Policy’s Leadership Advisory Council, the Intuit Small Business QuickBooks Council, and the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors. She is a member of the GW School of Business Board of Advisors and served as GWSB’s Undergraduate Commencement Celebration keynote speaker in May 2023.
Selby is founder and sole proprietor of Selby Winery in Sonoma County, California. Nearly three decades after she founded the business with her father, she remains one of the few women winemakers in the industry. Selby is a member of the GWSB Board of Advisors.
Simons co-founded the Founding Farmers Restaurant Group, which supports farmers through joint ownership and by advancing sustainability practices. Since its launch, the brand has expanded to seven restaurants and one distillery in D.C., Maryland, Virginia, and Pennsylvania. It also launched an e-commerce site featuring independent and locally sourced products.
Notable guests at the Hall of Fame induction included Bermuda Premier David Burt, BBA ’01, MS ’03, and Bermuda’s former Premier John Swan.
2023 GW School of Business Commencement Speakers
Hans Vestberg leads Verizon, the world’s largest wireless, fiber-optic and global information networks and services company.
A visionary who started her now award-winning, multi-million-dollar business with a personal investment of $500, Ms. LaJuanna Russell has more than 20 years of experience in all aspects of business operations and government contracting.
Islindy Merius is a Global MBA graduate and Forté Fellow at the George Washington University School of Business (GWSB).
Aditi Rao graduated Summa Cum Laude from the George Washington University School of Business with a Bachelor of Science in Marketing with a concentration in Information Systems & Technology Management, and she is a member of the university honors program.
2022-2023 George Talks Business Guests
Founder and Managing Director, Freshriver.ai
Co-founder and Co-chief Executive Officer, Taconic Partners
Founder, The Female Capitalist
Senior Advisor and Partner, Long Harbour LTD London
CEO, Sovereign Fund of Djibouti
Director, The Center For Entrepreneurial Excellence
NLP Research Developer, Croesus
Corporate Vice President of U.S. Government Affairs, Microsoft Corporation
President and CEO, Siemens Corporation
CEO, Sage Realty Corporation
Founder and CEO, Digital Leader Academy
Executive Vice Chairman, Cushman & Wakefield
Director of Business Hacking and U.S. Co-lead, Globant
Senior Managing Director of Capital Markets, Jones Lang LaSalle
Vice President of Development Credit, U.S. International Development Finance Corporation
Principal & Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer, KPMG
Founder and CEO, Impact Investment Exchange (IIX) and IIX Foundation
Scott Smith, Partner and Principal, Ernst & Young
Senior Vice President of Operations, The International Finance Corporation
Executive Director, Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA)
Career Center Builds Out Services Amid Fast-changing Job Market
Layoffs across the tech and consulting sectors rocked the workforce and challenged the F. David Fowler Career Center, but new experiential opportunities continued to keep GWSB students competitive in the job market. “It was a difficult year to predict. It had some choppiness, some unpredictable moments,” said Mark Strassman, Endowed Blaser Family Executive Director of the F. David Fowler Career Center. “Although unemployment is very low, it’s become more of an employer’s market and that made it more difficult to navigate than last year.”
Against that backdrop, the career center added its third Community of Practice (CoP), sponsored a strong Career Week with a continued focus on diversity, and deepened its alumni engagement.“We built on the successes we had last year, with additional tentacles,” Strassman explained.
The new CoP kicked off to align with the MBA in Security Technology Transition (MBA-STT) that the School of Business launched in partnership with the Department of Homeland Security. Like the popular CoPs in financial and consulting, the rigorous Security Technology Transition CoP incorporates one-on-one coaching, mentorship with industry specialists, career strategy guidance, case studies, and mock interviews. It also includes work on a student-led team assigned to a project for a real client. “At the outside, if things go well, they get an internship. Occasionally, it turns into full-time job offer,” Strassman said.
Career Week brought representatives from more than a hundred companies to the school for face-to-face and online meetings and presentations. The weeklong program of activities spotlighted careers with impact and workplaces with diversity. It also featured a panel discussion on social responsibility and sustainability. The Center for Real Estate and Urban Analysis (CREUA), meanwhile, held its own career and networking events, including a career trek to meet with commercial real estate executives in New York and site visits to large development projects in D.C.
Strassman said the career center’s activities were anchored by strong alumni engagement. “Alumni engagement was a focus of ours. I think we’ve done even better than we did last year, which was a really good year,” Strassman said.
“We educate students on the tools necessary to figure out what they want to do, to envision how to build their brand, to know how to tell their story in an interview, to network and build connections. We’re not a placement firm. We’re giving them tools that help them over a lifetime.”
Endowed Blaser Family Executive Director of the F. David Fowler Career Center
The F. David Fowler Career Center has unveiled its third Community of Practice, this one designed to dovetail with the MBA in Security Technology Transition (MBA-STT) that GW School of Business launched in partnership with the Department of Homeland Security.
Most of the students in the specialized MBA are mid-career professionals handpicked by DHS to join the two-and-a-half-year program. The degree is also open to government employees at other agencies, and to private sector security specialists. Students come from a range of government offices and agencies, including the Secret Service, TSA Innovation Task Force, U.S. Coast Guard, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and they take classes while continuing to work full time. DHS employees pursuing an MBA-STT also agree to continue their employment at the agency for at least two years after completing the degree.
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The Security Technology Transition Community of Practice (CoP) is the school’s third no-credit career-enhancing program, joining the existing CoPs in consulting and finance. While students are not required to join a CoP, the programs — which incorporate one-on-one coaching, mentorship, resume review, guidance, and networking opportunities — are popular.
Scott Pickett, senior career consultant at the F. David Fowler Career Center, said the CoP in Security Technology Transition is no exception.
“It’s a rigorous program designed to help them think more strategically, think more innovatively,” said Pickett. “I am super impressed with the talent of the students who have selected to take part. I’m positive within the next few years that many of them are going to be in the senior executive level of the government.”
The new Security Technology Transition CoP emphasizes networking opportunities. “We look to help them establish the network that will help them professionally, whether they are employees of DHS or other government agencies or work elsewhere in the industry,” Pickett said.
The new CoP kicked off in January 2023 with an event that brought together the first three cohorts in the MBA-STT and senior-level professionals from their respective agencies. The goal was to connect the students with one another and give their supervisors an overview of the CoP.
Representatives from the DHS Science and Technology Directorate spoke at the gathering, as did Dean Anuj Mehrotra. Throughout the rest of the semester, the CoP offered half-hour virtual “tech talks” every other Wednesday. The inaugural speaker for the talk series was Lamar Gonzalez Medlock, an international relations specialist from FEMA, who detailed how his agency uses technology in its disaster-response acquisitions process.
Subsequent talks spotlighted GW resources available to students in the MBA-STT program, such as the career center’s coaching services, and discussed issues ranging from a strong networking strategy to an understanding of how top talent is recruited in the field.
DHS announced in late 2020 that it had selected GW to pilot a Center of Excellence in Security Technology Transition through which the MBA-STT degree program would be offered. The first cohort of MBA-STT students completed the degree in May 2023.
GWSB’s 2022 Career Week was structured to help students identify employment areas where they can make an impact.
The September week of activities included both online and in-person offerings, making it the first Career Week since the COVID-19 pandemic that included face-to-face meetings. It featured representatives from 106 companies and a job fair.
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“It was phenomenal. It exceeded our expectations,” said Brian Citizen, associate director of the Employer Relations Office at the F. David Fowler Career Center. The Career Week theme was “Your Path to Impact.”
For the first time, Career Week incorporated the Executives in Residence program, a speed-mentoring project, providing a platform that enabled alumni to offer 100 one-on-one advice sessions for students. Career Week also sponsored a George Talks Business in which Dean Anuj Mehrotra interviewed Frederick Humphries Jr., corporate vice president of U.S. government affairs at Microsoft Corporation.
Career Week also featured a panel discussion on social responsibility and sustainability, a strength for the school and a growing area of interest for students.
Office building vacancies, rising interest rates, and regional bank turmoil have converged to tighten the real estate landscape. Against this backdrop, GWSB students continued to be sought after thanks to rigorous coursework and high-profile networking provided through the Center for Real Estate and Urban Analysis (CREUA).
“One thing about real estate is that it is never static. There are always challenges and opportunities,” said CREUA Executive Director Robert Valero. “We’re seeing strong headwinds right now, but most of our students have landed jobs. They have done pretty well in a tough market.”
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GWSB’s Bachelor of Business with a real estate concentration — the only undergraduate real estate degree program in the nation’s capital — has seen its annual enrollment grow to more than 110 students since its launch in 2018. The program requires that students take some master’s level courses, giving them a competitive edge in the tough job market.
Students in the program also have opportunities to network with industry leaders. In the 2022-2023 academic year, that networking included an intensive two-day real estate career trek to New York City. Thirteen sophomores, juniors, and seniors took part.
“After two years of COVID, we finally got back into the real world,” said Valero. “The trek was super successful. We were all over Manhattan and on Long Island City for site visits hosted by CREUA Advisory Board members or other real estate leaders.
The students were part of the school’s more than decade-old Real Estate and Finance Alliance (REFA) mentorship program, a competitive yearlong initiative that connects students to mentors. Valero said REFA students have “nearly 100 percent placement” when seeking jobs.
CREUA also provided opportunities during the 2022-2023 academic year for students to visit City Ridge and other D.C. real estate projects. City Ridge is redeveloping the former Fannie Mae building.
“The single best event I’ve done in 12 years at GW was a visit to City Ridge,” said Valero. “The students were able to learn everything associated with the development process, from zoning to construction to engineering to finishing. It was a really great outside-the-classroom experience.”
Roadside Development’s Robert Wolcheski (BS ’03) gave 15 students a two-and-a-half-hour tour of the project in October, explaining his firm’s vision. Boston Properties, meanwhile, hosted 20 students for a visit to the 2100 Penn office and retail project site in D.C.
“D.C. is a great real estate market. Some of the big real estate firms are literally just four blocks from campus. Many of our students do internships during the school year and during the summer because we have so many firms at our doorstep,” Valero said. “Our students have easy access for site visits and myriad opportunities to meet senior level industry professionals.”
A $1 million CREUA fundraising challenge spearheaded by GW Trustee Charles Bendit (BBA ’75) who sits on the center’s advisory board, is positioning the center for growth in the next academic year, when Stephen O’Connor joins CREUA as its new chair. O’Connor is a prominent scholar focused on affordable housing research and policy.
GWSB Students Embrace Learning Without Borders
Global travel and learning are part of the DNA at GWSB, and students were on the move during the 2022-2023 academic year, taking advantage of study abroad, global consulting projects, and on-campus events focused on international business.
GWSB’s International Business Program, ranked as the 6th best in the world by U.S. News & World Report, long has been a signature strength of the school. Its reputation and influence draws students interested in global business, development issues, and multinational careers. Even GWSB students who are not majoring in international business take advantage of global learning initiatives. “Students still want a global experience to be part of a GW education,” said Bryan Andriano, assistant dean of operations and global and experiential education.
As COVID-19 restrictions lifted, student interest in study and work abroad bounced back. From undergraduate students in the Global Bachelor’s Program to the Global MBA Consulting Abroad Program (CAP), entering its 15th year, students had a broad range of opportunities to gain an understanding of business and culture around the globe, including through consultancies involving overseas companies and markets.
Not all the international learning took place overseas. The GW Center for International Business Education and Research (GW-CIBER) deepened exposure to international business through the launched of a new Export Strategy Consulting Program. The program brought together students from GW and West Virginia University to help develop a Canadian market-entry strategy for a food product. GW-CIBER also continued its annual International Business Bootcamp and its Global Careers Podcast, and hosted an international trade trek to Norfolk, Virginia — the third largest port on the Eastern seaboard.
Additionally, students were involved in an Institute for Corporate Responsibility (ICR) project focused on reviving the cocoa industry in Trinidad and Tobago. The initiative is funded by the Inter-American Development Bank’s first impact-investment grant.
“In any given semester, we have students in every time zone.”
Assistant Dean of Operations and Global & Experiential Education
Since 2009, more than 1,200 GW Business Global M.B.A. students have worked with over 160 partners in 19 countries. Consulting Abroad Program (CAP) participants have worked on a diversity of projects for multinational companies, national, regional, and municipal governments, nonprofit organizations, SMEs and family companies, including agribusiness in Serbia, securities markets in Turkey, supply chain management in India, SME finance in Rwanda, clean-tech energy solutions in Sweden, and non-market strategy in Peru.
“CAP is a really clear example of how we are at the cutting edge of global education,” said Bryan Andriano, program founder and assistant dean of operations and global and experiential education at GW Business. “There’s such a tremendous capacity to provide the global learning environments that our students seek and that the world really needs.”
Alumni and faculty stepped forward to boost the Rafael Lucea Global Experiential Fund, increasing opportunities for Global MBA students to work on professional consultancy projects abroad. The fund provides travel and lodging stipends to MBA students who display exceptional leadership qualities and a commitment to community.
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Lucea energetically supported global experiential learning programs until his death in 2015. Currently, the need-based stipends average about $1,500.
“Rafael was one of the first faculty members to lead a Consulting Abroad Project, first to Spain in 2009 and later to Peru in 2012,” said Bryan Andriano, assistant dean of operations and global and experiential education. “He poured himself into each session that he led and was known for pushing students beyond their comfort zones to help them develop personally and professionally.”
Andriano said the CAP program helps distinguish GWSB students in the job market.
Plans are in the works to mark the fund’s upcoming 10th anniversary with a $100,000 endowment campaign that will expand the size of the stipends and the number of students who can benefit. Alumni, friends of Lucea, former CAP students, and student organizations have already stepped forward to seed the effort and raise the fund’s visibility.
In its first impact-investment grant, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) is funding an Institute for Corporate Responsibility (ICR) project focused on reviving the cocoa industry in Trinidad and Tobago, which once produced a fifth of the world’s cocoa.
“If you’re looking at cocoa farming, there are a lot of opportunities, but there is a lot of risk,” said ICR Director John Forrer. “Equity investors may look at options in other places with less risk than Trinidad and Tobago. We’re looking to bring in impact investors who want a reasonable return on their investment but are also interested in environmental and social impacts.”
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The $450,000 grant will help fund Cocoa, Carbon and Community, a project overseen by Forrer with student participation. The initiative looks at ways to attract impact investment to sustainable cocoa farming while setting up supply chains with a net zero carbon goal. The creation of jobs, including for women, and social benefits for farming communities are other aims.
ICR is working on the project in conjunction with the Cocoa Research Centre at the University of the West Indies. Forrer, an associate professor of strategic management and public policy, said GWSB students on the project will likely travel to Trinidad and Tobago.
Preliminary work on Cocoa, Carbon and Community was underway before the IDB finalized its grant in February. Members of Compass — a GW student group that does consulting work for nonprofits, start-ups, and social enterprises to develop impacting investment proposals — developed a survey for West Indies’ farmers to help identify the first group of farms to bring into the project.
“Students in Compass are building experience and networking through ICR,” said Forrer, who serves as faculty adviser for the student group. “They have already been working on cocoa projects, exploring what the opportunities are and options for impact investing, but this is the first time they have a hands-on project for analysis.”
GWSB undergraduates flexed their interest in international development and global challenges through the Global Bachelor's Program, which carves study abroad into the core of the academic experience. Interest in the select program, which requires three semesters of international experiences, has risen post-COVID.
“Students come to GW with deep and sincere interest in global issues. Since the pandemic, we’ve seen a rebound of student interest in study abroad,” said Bryan Adriano, assistant dean of operations and global and experiential education.
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The program is designed to expose students to the interconnected nature of global challenges. It also builds students’ abilities to adapt to new cultural and social experiences, and enables opportunities for them to expand their professional networks.
GWSB is one of three schools at George Washington University, along with the Elliott School of International Affairs and the Columbian College of Arts and Sciences, to offer the program. Ten students from each school are allowed to enroll in the select program each year.
Students can combine the degree with a number of majors, including international business or international affairs. A specific international challenge runs through each student’s program, offering them a chance to explore the issue through various geopolitical and cultural lenses.
Students in the program spend a semester in their sophomore year on one of two pathways: Asia-Pacific or Peace and Conflict Studies. In the 2022-2023 academic year, students who selected the Asia-Pacific pathway started their overseas experience at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, and for students in Peace and Conflict Studies, the Queen’s University in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
After the first semester abroad, Global Bachelor's students spend a second full semester studying abroad. To meet the requirements for a third international experience, they can take another semester of study abroad or they can take on a full-time international internship. All three experiences must unfold in different countries. Some classes are in person, some are virtual.
“We’re teaching students who are in remote stations in Africa. You can hear animals in the background,” Andriano said. “Meanwhile, in Hong Kong, they’re studying economics and international trade.” In Belfast, Associate Research Professor of Strategic Management & Public Policy and Director of the Institute for Corporate Responsibility at the School of Business, John Forrer, teaches a course on peace through commerce.
“They do research as part of the experience, and we’re seeing amazing outcomes from some of their research,” he continued. “Some students have been selected for remarkable fellowships as a result of their experience.”
Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, most students began the overseas experience at Fudan University in Shanghai, China. Andriano said he expected that to be the case again next year.
A new triple-degree program will allow aspiring global business leaders to study at prestigious institutions in a trio of capital cities around the world during their undergraduate years. George Washington University is partnering with Rome’s Luiss University and Beijing’s Renmin University on a program that will equip students with the critical and analytical skills needed in an increasingly connected world and marketplace.
The latest series of faculty and professional development programs led by the GW Center for International Business and Research (GW-CIBER) spotlighted international business in the Scandinavian region, Germany, and Sub-Saharan Africa.
GW-CIBER’s Faculty Development in International Business (FDIB) programs are designed for faculty who offer courses or conduct research linked to the business, economic, or innovation environment in specific areas of the globe. Program participants take part in workshops, study tours, academic and culture site visits, and professional seminars while traveling.
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GW- CIBER Faculty Director Anna Helm, a teaching associate professor of international business, led the Scandinavian program, which showcased Nordic innovation and technology entrepreneurship, with an emphasis on sustainable business solutions. The Scandinavian region is the birthplace of prominent innovative companies such as Ericsson, Skype, Spotify, Maersk, and Novo Nordisk. The Nordic region is proactively addressing global challenges, including clean energy, sustainable urban development, and access to finance and health care.
Clean energy was also a component of the FDIB program to Germany, which faces energy challenges. Germany has fostered a dynamic business climate for innovation in the clean technology sector, which capitalizes on advantageous regulations and incentives and strong public support.
The group traveled to Frankfurt, Stuttgart, and Heidelberg to visit business sites, take part in professional seminars, and meet leaders of both large and small companies. The companies visited included NKBAK Frankfurt, which specializes in the design of public buildings and urban spaces, with a focus on sustainable and environmentally friendly architecture; Lufthansa Group CleanTech Hub, dedicated to reducing the air carrier’s carbon footprint; and start-up Knärzje GmbH, which brews beer using organic bread just past its sell-by date in order to reduce food waste.
The group also met with University of Southern Denmark Professor Maria Elo to learn about her research on migrant and diaspora entrepreneurship in Germany.
In addition to business faculty, the FDIB program also offered a limited number of spots for German language and culture faculty who teach or are developing a business German course or materials. GW Professor of German Margaret Gonglewski was a co-leader of the program with Helm.
The program that took participants to Rwanda and South Africa aimed to deepen understanding of the business challenges in Sub-Saharan Africa. Participants visited a distribution center for Zipline, a U.S.-based company that designs and operates drones to deliver medical and agricultural supplies to rural areas in Rwanda. Other visits included the Rwanda Stock Exchange; the Rwanda Development Board, the government agency overseeing private sector activity; and The Women's Bakery, a leading social enterprise that provides training for women who lack access to the education system while simultaneously providing free bread to children across Rwanda.
The Africa program was sponsored and managed by the University of South Carolina CIBER team, with support from GW-CIBER. GWSB Associate Professor of International Business and International Affairs Reid Click, chair of the Department of International Business, accompanied the participants.
The GW-Center for International Business Education and Research (GW-CIBER) launched an Export Strategy Consulting Program during a year packed with exciting student programming, including multiple business case competitions, career roundtables and discussions, and another round of the center’s popular International Business Bootcamp.
“In GW-CIBER’s role as a national resource center for international business, we have significantly expanded the exposure to international business for our GW community, as well as our external constituents,” said GW-CIBER Faculty Director Anna Helms, a teaching associate professor of international business.
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“A key area for GW-CIBER is to enhance our students’ global career opportunities. To that effect, we have hosted a number of successful executives on campus to allow a direct, in-person dialog between these impressive professionals and our students,” she added. “We have also produced three new seasons in our Global Careers Podcast hosted by Stacie Nevadomski Berdan.”
The new Export Strategy Consulting Program brought together students from GW and West Virginia University to help Kenyan Café develop a Canadian market-entry strategy for its product, Wild Kenyan Hot Sauce. As part of the program, students spent a day in Morgantown, West Virginia, meeting their client, taking part in team-building activities, and listening to experts detail the West Virginia economy and business environment.
In the fall of 2022, meanwhile, GW-CIBER faculty, staff, and students took a Trade Trek to Norfolk, Virginia, with faculty and students from Southwest Virginia Community College to learn about the mechanics of international trade, using the third-largest port on the Eastern seaboard as an example.
“These types of programs allow GW-CIBER to help internationalize institutions, such as community colleges, minority-serving institutions, and other strategic partners in underserved geographic areas,” Helms said.
With GW-CIBER’s support, GW students participated in several case competitions. One graduate team and one undergraduate team took part in the NASBITE International Student Case Competition, which tested business students’ ability to solve a real-world challenge posed by a U.S.-based exporter. GW was also represented by two teams — one of undergraduates and the other of graduate students — at the International Business Ethics and Sustainability Case Competition hosted by Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. Students developed recommendations on ways selected textile and apparel companies could improve sustainability and transparency in their supply chains. In Boston, a GW student team competed in the CUIBE Co-sponsored Case Competition, in which students were presented with an actual issue confronting a company in its global business interactions.
A Women in Global Careers Roundtable enabled GWSB students to engage in discussions and networking with executives who have worked around the world. The roundtable was co-organized with the GW Women's MBA Association, Forte Fellows at GW, and the GW Women in Business (GWWIB) organization. A Careers in Global Marketing panel discussion, meanwhile, featured international marketing experts from some of industry’s biggest brands, among them Dove, Nestle, Unilever, Shiseido, Intel, Avon, and Kraft.
GW-CIBER also held its nearly month-long International Business Bootcamp to deepen students’ practical understanding of global business and trade.
The George Washington University School of Business (GWSB) was recently awarded a four-year grant renewal totaling roughly $1.3 million from the U.S. Department of Education to continue programming with the Center for International Business Education and Research (GW-CIBER).
The center’s mission is to build the United States’ capacity for international understanding and competitiveness abroad by pursuing a comprehensive set of interdisciplinary research, education and outreach initiatives. GW-CIBER serves as a national resource center for international business (IB) and is part of a network of 16 such centers around the country.
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