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Price E-News April 2020

Price College of Business E-News April 2020


Dr. Wayne Thomas


Price College has always been a special place because of its people. Perhaps never has this been demonstrated more profoundly than the past month. On March 12, the university asked all faculty to move their classes online in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. Our faculty and staff responded. The IT staff moved quickly to get everyone the equipment and training they needed. Faculty formed groups to share strategies and teaching techniques. Several training sessions were held. The advising staff prepared new procedures to help students remotely. Faculty advisors of student groups prepared new ways to keep these groups functioning. Within a few days, ALL operations of Price College were moving forward. I wish each of you could have a glimpse of what I was able to see: a community of faculty and staff pulling together to help one another for the benefit of our students.

We will continue to face operational and financial challenges. The disruptions have been profound. Overcoming these challenges will require creativity, flexibility, and intellect. At the same time, I know these challenges represent opportunities for those who have the confidence and determination to overcome them. This will be Price College. Our goals remain high.

If you have any questions about how the University of Oklahoma is addressing the COVID-19 crisis, please check the University’s coronavirus website, a resource that is updated regularly with the latest information available for the OU community.

In the meantime, I’d like to share with you our latest news and developments.

In March, Corey Phelps, Ph.D., was named the new dean of the Michael F. Price College of Business, pending OU Regents’ approval. Phelps will join OU from McGill University, where he has served as Marcel Desautels Faculty Fellow and associate dean of executive programs and education at the Desautels Faculty of Management. A national search was conducted for the position, which attracted more than 45 qualified applicants. The search committee – made up of 11 members representing Price College faculty, staff, students, and Board of Advisors, and representatives from the College of Law and the Honors College – interviewed seven semifinalists and invited two finalists to campus. Phelps was the search committee’s unanimous choice and the preferred candidate of the different College of Business constituencies. Please join me, along with all the faculty and staff, in welcoming Dr. Phelps as he joins the Price College family this summer.

Jet in flight

Earlier this month, we announced two exciting new graduate programs to confront a much needed area in Oklahoma’s aerospace and defense industry: (1) a one-year, 32-credit-hour Executive MBA in Aerospace and Defense and (2) a six-month, 12-credit-hour Graduate Certificate in Aerospace and Defense. Both programs are designed specifically to develop the managerial and leadership skills of the A&D workforce. The curriculum provides participants the opportunity to synthesize concepts related to A&D functions, employ critical-thinking skills, develop business strategies, and collaborate with others in a dynamic industry environment. We have an amazing group of faculty and staff at the Gene Rainbolt Graduate School of Business, who have been working tirelessly to bring these important programs online in time for fall 2020

AACSB team members visit Price

Over the past year, our faculty have worked ceaselessly on the plans and preparations necessary for the College’s accreditation, a thorough evaluation and auditing process which occurs every five years in order to maintain our Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International) accredited status. I am pleased to announce that both the Price College of Business and the John T. Steed School of Accounting have maintained our business and accounting accreditation for another five years. This important achievement is the culmination of the hard work of many faculty and staff, as well as an on-site visit in March (shown above). I would like to thank everyone who added their areas’ expertise, especially Dr. Fran Ayres, Associate Dean for Faculty and Research Innovation and Dale Looper Chair in Accounting, who has chaired the accreditation process. In addition to her teaching load and preparations to retire, she has graciously steered the accreditation process, and we are most grateful for her hard work on this important endeavor that continues to propel our College.

Lastly, Poets & Quants recently ranked the Price College of Business among the Top Value Business Schools in the nation, based on the undergraduate business degree’s 10-year ROI (#48 overall and #33 among public universities). That makes us a Top 50 in quality and Top 50 in value!

Every day I’m reminded of how innovative the Price College of Business family is by their willingness to both adapt to today’s greatest challenges and to continue to offer the best education and information available to our future leaders. This April e-Newsletter serves to highlight just a few of the ways we’re living out the Purpose of Price® each day. I send you and your family my greatest hopes and wishes that you remain safe and healthy during this challenging time.

Wayne Thomas signature

Wayne Thomas
Interim Dean
W.K. Newton Chair of Accounting
George Lynn Cross Research Professor


May 8
Virtual Commencement & Convocation Ceremonies

Sooner Launch Pad
Canceled due to COVID-19

Sooners Helping Sooners
Sppners Helping Sooners

Now is the time for Sooners to help Sooners. The Sooners Helping Sooners fund supports students across all disciplines and from all three OU campuses during crises. We are asking for your support of our students who are facing current challenges.

Give Here

Retirement: Al Schwarzkopf
Al Schwarzkopf

Al Schwarzkopf, Associate Professor and Regents’ Professor of Management Information Systems, is retiring at the end of the spring 2020 semester. Originally trained as a mathematician, he spent 15 years in OU’s mathematics department. In 1984, he transferred to the College of Business Administration and helped to establish the MIS program. Price faculty gave him an official sendoff via video party on April 10. Please consider emailing him your best wishes.

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Tackle Big Issues | Energy
EMBA cohort 10 group photo

February was full of highs for the Energy Institute, which saw three major rankings for its Executive MBA in Energy program. The institute received significant write-ups in the February 2020 issue of Hart Energy’s industry magazine, Oil and Gas Investor, including the No. 1 ranking in its premiere Top 15 Energy Graduate Programs listing. Additionally, the program recently was ranked No. 10 in Ivy Exec’s Top EMBA Programs in the U.S. Southwest.

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Tackle Big Issues | Economic Development
Online managment class meets virtually

In spite of new social distancing challenges, Breea Clark’s management class continues to meet with numerous special guest presenters (online, since March 16), including former OU football head coach Barry Switzer, Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt (shown here in yellow box), and Erika Lucas with StitchCrew. Each week, guest speakers share stories and inspiration about their own entrepreneurial journeys.

various representatives of Price College, Love’s, Oklahoma Lt. Gov. Matt Pinnell, and Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education Chancellor Glen Johnson

Love’s Travel Stops and Country Stores was honored for their support of Price College at a luncheon in March. The Regents Business Partnership Excellence Award, sponsored by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education, is designed to highlight successful partnerships and to further cultivate the higher learning environment through State Regents’ Economic Development Grants. Shown here are various representatives of Price College, Love’s, Oklahoma Lt. Gov. Matt Pinnell, and Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education Chancellor Glen Johnson.

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Tackle Big Issues | Healthcare
John Gray

John Gray, Professor of Operations and Associate Director for the Center for Operational Excellence at Ohio State University served as a guest lecturer Feb. 28 on behalf of the Center for the Business of Healthcare and the Division of Marketing and Supply Chain Management. Gray presented a working paper entitled, “Are Generics Safe? A Drug-Level Analysis.”

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Business newspaper and stethoscope

Price College’s healthcare minor is now a major! Subject to State Regents’ final approval, business students can now major in healthcare starting this fall. Classes include Healthcare Marketing and Administration, Competitive and Economic Environment of Healthcare, Ethical and Regulatory Issues in Healthcare, Business Infrastructure and Cyber Security, and Healthcare Supply Chain Management.

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Generate Business Insights
Entrepreneurship students sit at table with laptop

Numerous student entrepreneurship teams are competing in this year’s annual Love’s Entrepreneur’s Cup, a statewide collegiate business plan competition that simulates the real-world process of researching a market, writing a business plan, and making a presentation to potential investors. Two student teams have won High Growth Division Interview awards, and several more are finalists in another category. An awards ceremony will be live streamed at 7 p.m. April 23.

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Mark Bolino

In March, Psychology Today published an article by Mark Bolino, “Managing Employee Stress and Anxiety During the Coronavirus.” The article provides practical, evidence-based advice for managers seeking help during unprecedented stress and uncertainty amidst a global pandemic.

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Prepare Leaders
Group photo of students from PC North campus tour

This spring, the Office of Diversity and Inclusion participated in numerous outreach activities, including speaking engagements about mentorship at the Innovative Youth Male Summit at Crutcho Elementary, the Black Men Read afterschool program hosted by the Urban League of Oklahoma City Young Professionals and the Oklahoma Educational Television Authority, and hosting high school students from Putnam City North for a campus tour (shown above).

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Trevor Davis and friends

Trevor “Skeeter” Davis (shown here, on right), an International Business and Healthcare Business student with Spanish and non-profit management minors, is co-director of the OU chapter of Camp Kesem. The nationwide summer camp is led by college student leaders and serves children whose parents are affected by cancer. 




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Jocelyn Pedersen

In addition to her teaching duties at Price College, Business Communication Instructor Jocelyn Pedersen is a freelance writer and gold multi-medal weightlifting champion. This spring, the Norman Transcript wrote a feature article about Pedersen’s accomplishments outside of the classroom.




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OSPCA Alumni Phil Brockhaus, Trep Petty, Tim Roberts, and Jim Small

In March, the Oklahoma Society of CPAs released the names of its 2020 Trailblazers and Path Finders in conjunction with the March/April special issue of the society’s magazine, CPAFOCUS. Congrats to Price alums Phil Brockhaus (1969/70), Trey Petty (2016), Tim Roberts (2005), and Jim Small (1972), who were recognized for their mentoring contributions to the field.


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Anita Holloway

In February, Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt appointed Anita Holloway to the OU Board of Regents. A strong supporter of the University of Oklahoma, Holloway has served as a member of both the Price College Board of Advisors and the OU Energy Institute Board of Advisors. She is a 2015 inductee into the Arthur B. Adams Society and frequently serves as a guest lecturer for the College.


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Crowd celebrates as Soonerthon raises $1,033,102.20

This year’s OU Campus Activities Council Soonerthon event broke records and raised $1,033,102.20 for Oklahoma children. To date, Soonerthon has raised over $5.57 million since its inception in 1996 by former Price College of Business Dean Daniel Pullin. Soonerthon is OU’s largest student-led philanthropy, which benefits the Children’s Hospital Foundation in Oklahoma City through the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.

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Faculty Research
Tom Lumpkin

Tom Lumpkin co-authored a new article, “Age and entrepreneurial career success: A review and a meta-analysis,” published in the Journal of Business Venturing, which was cited by the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and Insurance Journal.

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Mark Bolino

Mark Bolino’s new paper (co-authored with 2013 Price College Ph.D. alum Anthony Klotz), “Bringing the Great Outdoors Inside Workplaces,” has been referenced in a new article by Academy of Management Insights.

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Bill Megginson

Bill Megginson’s co-authored article, “Vertical integration as an input price hedge: The case of Delta Air Lines and trainer refinery,” has been published in the Spring 2020 issue of Financial Management.

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Alumni Achievement
Elenor Smit Fox and friends hold up OU flag

Eleanor Smith Fox (BBA, Business, 1960) has officially been to every country in the world. As a senior in Heidelberg American High School, she made it a lifetime goal to see the whole planet. As of January 2020, she has visited every country on the globe – a feat that has required nine passports so far. She is shown here with friends on a 2018 OU Sightseeing Sooners alumni trip, during the Mighty Mississippi river cruise.


In Memoriam
Charles Wilbanks

Charles “Chuck” M. Wilbanks (BBA, Management, 1955), owner and president of Wilbanks Energy Corporation, passed away in February. He was affiliated with Phillips Petroleum for 13 years in Louisiana before moving to Houston through a series of various promotions. In 1969, he formed Mason-Wilbanks Oil Operations and, in 1981, Wilbanks Energy Corporation. He was an avid supporter of his alma mater.

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Photo of flowers

Oleta Walker (BBA, Accounting, 1982) passed away in February. She became a Certified Public Accountant in Denton, Texas, where she worked for accounting firm Ernest Nikkel and Hankins & Powers. She taught at Moorehead State University in Moorehead, Minnesota, before she retired in 1997 and moved to Chickasha, Oklahoma.


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John Dierker

John Dierker (BS, Business, 1950; Bachelor of Laws/LLB Upgrade to JD, 1953) passed away in December, 2019. He served in the Korean War in the 45th Division, then joined the Air Force Reserve and retired as a Lt. Colonel. He practiced law in Dallas until 1984 and moved to San Angelo, Texas, in 2007.


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Rick Moore

Rick Moore (BBA, Accounting, 1982; JD, 1985), who passed away in October, 2019, has left behind the second-largest donation to the OU College of Law in the college’s history – a nearly $5 million gift. As an eternal expression of his appreciation to both degree programs he experienced, the Rick Moore Endowed Scholarship will provide a three-year OU Law education tuition-free for an eligible student who earned an undergraduate degree in accounting from OU.

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