Message From The Dean – Spring 2023

Dear members of the Engler College of Business community,

Warm greetings to all of you! I’m thrilled to share the latest Engler College of Business newsletter, filled with stories that embody our community’s resilience and convey a spirit of optimism. We continue to make remarkable progress in delivering exceptional education and fostering business excellence.

First and foremost, I am delighted to announce that Amarillo National Bank has generously contributed $3 million to support the growth and development of our accounting, economics, and finance programs. This significant contribution has resulted in the naming of the Amarillo National Bank School of Accounting, Economics, and Finance within the Paul and Virginia Engler College of Business. We are incredibly grateful for Amarillo National Bank’s investment in the future of our college, as this support will go a long way to ensure that our students receive a world-class education.

Furthermore, I am pleased to share that our college has successfully completed a rigorous evaluation process for the reaffirmation of our AACSB accreditation. AACSB reaffirmation signifies and reflects our continued commitment to upholding the highest standards of excellence in business education. This achievement is a testament to the hard work and dedication of our faculty, staff, and students, who consistently demonstrate their commitment to academic excellence.

I extend my heartfelt appreciation to the Engler College of Business community for your collective efforts to achieve these critically important milestones. We continue to thrive and positively impact our students and the business community through our collaborative spirit, dedication to excellence, and unwavering support.

The Stan Sigman Leadership and Innovation Series was developed in 2021 to serve as a platform to bring influential leaders and visionaries to campus to share their insights and expertise with our students and community. The Fall 2022 feature speaker in this series was Jeff McElfresh, who is the Chief Operating Officer at AT&T.  Mr. McElfresh plays a pivotal role in driving innovation, managing operations, and leading strategic initiatives within the telecommunications industry. During the event, Jeff shared his experience with our students and shared his unique perspective on the industry’s dynamic landscape; these are valuable lessons for aspiring professionals.

Our academic programs continue receiving high peer evaluations from reputable outlets such as US News & World Report and the Princeton Review. These rankings underscore the quality of our programs and reflect the dedication, hard work, and commitment of our faculty, staff, and students. Moreover, they reinforce our reputation as a leading institution in business education.

In collaboration with SBDC and the WT Enterprise Center, our recent Engler Women in Business Conference, held in the heart of the Panhandle of Texas, was a resounding success. This empowering event fostered the growth and development of women in business, bringing together a diverse group of businesswomen eager to share their experiences, insights, and inspiration with our students. This empowering event exceeded all expectations. The participants addressed relevant topics such as leadership, career advancement, work-life balance, and overcoming challenges, responding to thought-provoking questions from our students.

During the summer, we embark on an exciting journey as we begin our 2023-2028 strategic planning process and curriculum update. This endeavor presents us with an incredible opportunity to shape the future of business education and create a transformative learning experience for our students.

Strategic planning is essential to our continuous improvement and growth as a leading institution in business education. It enables us to set a clear direction, establish ambitious goals, and allocate resources effectively to drive meaningful change. We aim to stay ahead of emerging trends, embrace innovation, and provide our students with the skills and knowledge necessary to thrive in an ever-evolving business landscape.

As we embark on this transformative journey, I invite each and every one of you to actively participate, share your ideas, and contribute to shaping the future of business education in our college. Your input, experiences, and vision are invaluable as we work together to redefine what it means to be a business professional in the 21st century.

I am delighted to present the final list of stories featured in this newsletter. These stories shine a light on the achievements, initiatives, and remarkable progress that has taken place within our college.

One of the remarkable stories is about Corey, whose achievements are truly inspiring. Corey diligently pursued his BBA and MPA programs without taking a break, and he even embarked on studying for the CPA shortly after starting his first job. We are thrilled to share that Corey passed the exam late last fall and is preparing for his CFP exam this June.

The story of Michael showcases the incredible synergy between his life as a triathlete and his dedication to his studies. Michael’s training and discipline have profoundly impacted his study habits, leading to success in both domains.

Another inspiring journey is that of Leslie, as summarized in Episode 2 of our BuffSpeak podcast. Leslie defied the odds as an unlikely graduate student, completing both a master’s and a Ph.D. As a Hispanic educator, she has been a powerful influence on our Hispanic students’ lives and serves as the head of the local chapter of ALPFA.

We also delve into Karen’s story, which revolves around her exceptional teaching abilities and the numerous awards she has received. Karen’s effectiveness in the classroom is unrivaled, and her students love her. Additionally, we explore her passion as a lifelong runner, drawing from our numerous conversations about our respective athletic endeavors.

Regarding the Engler College of Business symposium, we provide an overview of the rankings, highlighting the award winners and our high standing in the latest event.

Our focus on the new school within the College of Business centers around Amarillo National Bank’s generous donation and the appointment of Dr. Macy as its Director. We emphasize the immense value of both contributions and discuss how they will greatly enhance our programs.

Lastly, we take a moment to acknowledge the Bain Family’s pivotal role in the College of Business and WT as a whole, along with their philanthropic donations. It is worth noting that our podcast is produced in a studio bearing their name, signifying their enduring support. As we say goodbye to spring and embrace the adventures of the upcoming seasons, let us carry the spirit of optimism and positivity that defines our community. We have shown our resilience, adaptability, and ability to thrive in the face of challenges.

If you have a story that you would like to be considered for future newsletters, contact Dr. Nick Gerlich.