Business leaders donated time, ideas

Published 12:03 am Friday, December 18, 2009

It’s final exam week at Alcorn School of Business. Both undergraduates and graduate students are taking the final steps toward the end of the fall term. All have been grounded in the latest principles and theories of business management transmitted by seasoned faculty.

The students have also been supported by a caring, professional staff. This is expected and normal in an academic setting.

What is out of the norm are the contributions (to their education) of civic and business leaders in their roles as “guest lecturers.”

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The purpose of this letter is to publicly thank several Natchez business leaders for agreeing to share their “keys to success” with those enrolled in “The Essentials of Modern Management” class.

The students benefited greatly from hearing “real world” examples of what it takes to be a successful manager in today’s complex and ever-changing economic environment.

The students learned, via stories of actual workplace situations, what it means to build a team of co-workers to achieve organizational goals, what is necessary to hire employees that will meld into the organization’s corporate culture, how hard it is either to lay employees off or fire them, among other real world examples.

Special thanks are in order to the following Natchez community/business leaders for enriching the education of several Alcorn business students this fall term: Bill Furlow (on crisis management), Diana Glaze (on human resources management from Callon Petroleum), Kathleen Jenkins Bond (superintendent of Natchez National Historical Park), Margaret Perkins (First Natchez Radio Group) and Kevin Cooper (publisher of The Natchez Democrat).

They are examples of what it means to give back to one’s community and become contributing corporate citizens to making Natchez a great place to live and work.

The students  gave them A pluses for their presentations and I give them my gratitude and best wishes for a Merry Christmas!

Mike Gemmell

Instructor at Alcorn State University, Natchez campus