Sunday, May 14, 2017

A Leader for the 21st Century from the Isenberg School of Management

Yesterday was a truly marvelous day with the Isenberg School of Management (ISOM) commencement at the Mullins Center. This is  a special ceremony in which each of the ISOM graduating senior undergraduates receiving their degree, gets their name called, receives a medal, and gets recognized by our fabulous Dean, Dr. Mark A. Fuller, and our exceptional Undergraduate Associate Dean Dr. Linda Shea. Faculty from the graduate's department (and we have 7)  then shake hands and often also share hugs. It is a day to remember.
Wonderful speeches by our Deans as well as an uplifting video on our school's namesake, Mr. Gene Isenberg, added to the special ceremony.

I very much enjoyed being a faculty marshal with my Sports Management colleague, and our Director of Diversity, Dr. Nefertiti Walker. We were all led by Mr. Lou Wigdor, who carried the Isenberg School banner.

I could not resist taking the photo of my Operations and Information Management (OIM) colleagues below after we had shaken our OIM graduates' hands.
Also recognized at the ceremony were our student leaders and award recipients, including the Jack Welch Scholar from the Marketing Department, Elizabeth Miranda Imbrogna, and Karen Li, an OIM major and premed, whom I had nominated for the 21st Century Leaders Award. Karen was one of ten recipients of the 21st Century Leaders Award from the entire UMass Amherst undergrad graduating class of over 5,000!

The day before Karen was recognized at the UMass Amherst graduation and sat on the podium with our Chancellor and other dignitaries, including Senator Elizabeth Warren, who gave a tremendous speech.

And, on Friday evening, my husband and I took part in a very special commencement celebration at the UMass Amherst Campus Center honoring the 21st Century Leader Award recipients and the Jack Welch Scholars as well as the jazz legend, Sheila Jordan, the honorary degree recipient.
Above is Karen Li receiving her award from the UMass Amherst Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy and Provost Katherine E. Newman as well as the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs and Campus Life, Dr. Enku Gelaye. Michaella Morzuch, President of the UMass Amherst Alumni Association, was the excellent moderator and emcee who announced the award recipients.

Congratulations to all!
I have written about Karen Li and her accomplishments before, including her 100 page honors thesis, which she defended at the Undergraduate Research Conference on April 28.

It was so special to celebrate this occasion even with the Amherst Fire Chief Mr. Tim Nelson, who Karen had interviewed for her thesis. He also graciously hosted a tour of the North Amherst Fire Station last year for the students in my Humanitarian Logistics and Healthcare class that Karen was in. Joining us in the photo below are Dean Mark A. Fuller and Associate Dean of the College of Engineering, my marvelous collaborator on two National Science Foundation grants, Dr. Tilman Wolf.
Three generations of Karen's family celebrated with us.
The food and lovely evening all those in attendance will never forget.

I also had a chance to meet the commencement student speaker, Conor Janes O'Kelly from Ipswich, whose moving tribute to his father, who would always leave him a note in his lunchbox on the first day of school, was heartfelt. Below is a photo of Conor and his Dad at the commencement celebration dinner.

We wish all of the class of 2017 much happiness and professional success! With 21st Century Leaders such as these, lucky are those who are faculty at the Isenberg School of Management and UMass Amherst!