Home
MyU
OneStop
Home
Spring 2011

By :
BY SARA GILBERT FREDERICK

Corporate partners and alumni working at major corporations locally and around the country connect to the Carlson School by mentoring students, recruiting interns and employees, teaching classes, and sponsoring scholarships and programs. They bring their expertise and experience to the boards on which they serve within the school, and they enhance the school’s programs by acting as consultants. Many also have deepened bonds between their corporations and the Carlson School by designing customized continuing education opportunities for their own employees.


Mentoring Header
Kai Worrell

Kai Worrell, ’00 BSB
President, Worrell Design Inc.

Relationship to the Carlson School:

Besides mentoring students and hiring interns from the Carlson School, I have forged great relationships with the professors who set me up to apply management principles directly to my business.

How has the Carlson School affected your life and career?

I have been fortunate to continue to host Carlson School classes at Worrell on a regular basis, both in our Minneapolis office and in Shanghai. We also routinely guest-lecture on the power of ethnographic research, design, innovation, and changes in emerging markets.

Why is the Carlson School important to the Twin Cities business community?

The Carlson School has an incredible record of attracting and graduating students who add tremendous value to the competitiveness and sophistication of companies and organizations in the Twin Cities. We have hired three students in the last 12 months from the Carlson School, and they have already made a great impact.


Any Vander Woude

Andy Vander Woude, ’04 MS Management of Technology (joint Carlson School/IT)
CEO, VAST Enterprises LLC

Relationship to the Carlson School:

We mentor business students at the Carlson School and hire interns from there as well. It’s been a very successful relationship for us.

How has the Carlson School affected your life and career?

I would not be doing what I’m doing without it. That’s where I made connections to my business partners. Without that environment of like-minded people to build relationships with, this business wouldn’t have happened. Being able to hone your business skills in an academic environment and arm yourself to face business challenges when you are in a start up, that’s obviously important.

Why is the Carlson School important to the Twin Cities business community?

It’s the most respected, trusted business school in the area, and it’s absolutely critical for businesses that draw their talent pool from this area.


Craig Crossley

Craig Crossley
Senior Manager of Research, In-Store Demand,
The Schwan Food Company

Relationship to the Carlson School:

I’m connected to the Carlson School on several levels, including research partnerships, involvement in institutes, mentoring student interns, and supporting doctoral student research and dissertations. My current relationship with the Carlson School is, at its heart, based on friendships and a shared passion for research and student development.

How has the Carlson School affected your life and career?

The insights of faculty and friends have provided me direction and challenged me to think differently about business challenges. In my current role overseeing marketing and sales research and execution, it is more than useful to have ties to the Institute for Research in Marketing, which has provided insights and resources necessary to provide the kind of deep knowledge that can help us gain competitive advantage and growth. That is especially important in the current economic market.

Why is the Carlson School important to the Twin Cities business community?

The Carlson School provides a community for professionals and enables connections across like-minded people working at a variety of organizations in the area. The school also continues to offer top-notch education to students and executives. While it’s difficult to put a price tag on the tangible and intangible value that the Carlson School provides to the business community, it is clear that the value is there to be had by organizations and companies that are proactive and interested in forging relations with the school and its faculty, staff, and students.


Teaching HeaderDale Busacker

Dale Busacker
Director, Grant Thornton LLP

Relationship to the Carlson School:

I’ve been an adjunct instructor teaching state and local taxation in the MBT program since January 1991.

How has the Carlson School affected your life and career?

Teaching in the MBT program has allowed me to connect with many more professionals in the tax area—most in the early stage of their careers. Most classes include about 30 students, and most of them are employed with other accounting firms or with companies—many of which are clients.

Why is the Carlson School important to the Twin Cities business community?

It’s important that tax professionals in the Twin Cities area have an opportunity to earn a master’s in tax degree. This is evidenced by the large number of tax professionals who are working for accounting firms in this area and by the large number of tax professionals who are employed by corporations headquartered here.


Sponsors Heading
Shelly Espinosa

Shelly Espinosa
Director of Community Affairs, United Health Foundation

Relationship to the Carlson School:

I help distribute 15 annual scholarships from UnitedHealth Group for students of the Carlson School and other undergraduates from the Twin Cities campus to encourage and support the next generation of health care actuaries.

How has the Carlson School affected your life and career?

While I did not attend the Carlson School, I have enjoyed meeting the scholarship recipients and seeing what a positive impact the program has on their lives.

Why is the Carlson School important to the Twin Cities business community?

The Carlson School plays an important role in helping shape the next generation of business professionals in our community, as well as providing programs for mid-career professionals. It’s wonderful that we have such a world-class institution right in our own back yard.


Kasey Comnick

Kasey Comnick, ’04 BSB
Senior Talent Acquisition Specialist, Ecolab

Relationship to the Carlson School:

I manage campus relations for Ecolab, which has a strong partnership with the Carlson School. I am also pursuing my part-time MBA through the Carlson School.

How has the Carlson School affected your life and career?

Ecolab’s strong partnership with the school has allowed us to not only recruit top talent but also to gain thought leadership through various development and networking opportunities. Personally, I have found challenging career opportunities with growth potential, advancement, and best-in-class experiences, in part because the Carlson School provided access to world-class opportunities.

Why is the Carlson School important to the Twin Cities business community?

The connections and partnerships with the many Fortune 500 companies in the area have created a win-win for the school, students, and companies. The school maintains its prestige, the companies gain access to world-class talent, and students like myself are able to achieve their career ambitions.


Board Members Heading
Bruce Beckman

Bruce Beckman, ’90 BSB, ’99 MBA
Director of Corporate Planning and Analysis, General Mills

Relationship to the Carlson School:

My first involvement was through the Undergraduate Mentorship Program, which led to an invitation to join the Alumni Board, which I was on for almost seven years, including three as Board president. Now I have joined the Undergraduate Advisory Board.

How has the Carlson School affected your life and career?

My experience there opened doors that likely would not have been opened any other way. It enabled me to secure a great career opportunity with a great company. The Board service has been another avenue to grow and develop as a professional. I also have made many life-long friendships; my wife and I met at the Carlson School.

Why is the Carlson School important to the Twin Cities business community?

The Carlson School has done nothing but improve over the time that I’ve been associated with it. The students are better than ever, and the curriculum and the facilities are better than they’ve ever been, too. The world is a more competitive place, but the Carlson School has kept up. It is still able to provide top talent to businesses in this tough environment.


Jeffrey Noddle

Jeffrey Noddle
Retired Executive Chairman and CEO, SUPERVALU

Relationship to the Carlson School:

I’m the chair of the Board of Overseers for the Carlson School.

How has the Carlson School affected your life and career?

Since I’ve been involved on the Board, I’ve gone out and gotten other executives involved at the Carlson School as well. We can all benefit from the University’s involvement in the business community.

Why is the Carlson School important to the Twin Cities business community?

We really ought to think of it as a resource for ideas and opportunities; why would you hire consultants when you’ve got the Carlson School? They’ve got great minds there. And it’s a great source of future employees.


Recruitment Heading
Joanna Gaines

Joanna Gaines, ’05 MBA
Director of Continuous Improvement and Quality Assurance, Thrivent Financial for Lutherans

Relationship to the Carlson School:

I now interface with the Carlson School through recruiting employees. I’m involved with the whole recruiting cycle for the Thrivent headquarters in Appleton, Wis.

How has the Carlson School affected your life and career?

The quality of education is one thing; it’s not just any MBA program. I think the Carlson School perspective that I can bring to an organization such as Thrivent is critical.

Why is the Carlson School important to the Twin Cities business community?

Our Minneapolis office has recruited solely Carlson School candidates; for us in Appleton, it’s more of a regional place, but it’s still about access to high-quality candidates.


Chuck Edward

Chuck Edward, ’93 MA-IR
General Manager of Human Resources,
Microsoft Customer Service and Support Division

Relationship to the Carlson School:

I have been Microsoft’s executive sponsor for our Carlson School relationship since 2004. I come to campus to recruit, and also have had the chance to do guest lectures in classes.

How has the Carlson School affected your life and career?

Going there accelerated my development and my marketability—it flat-out accelerated my career. It also helps me be successful in my current job; in this executive sponsorship, I’m accountable to bring in top talent for Microsoft, and I know I can do that at the Carlson School.

Why is the Carlson School important to the Twin Cities business community?

It’s important to the whole country. We’re a very global company and we have many international assignments, so the Carlson School experience has to help you compete globally. And it does.


Consulting Header
Angela Mathew

Angela Mathew, ’10 MBA
Outreach and Education Operations Manager,
Division of Cardiovascular Diseases, Mayo Clinic

Relationship to the Carlson School:

As a Carlson School part-time MBA student, I took an independent study with Professor Steve Parente and the MILI Valuation Lab. I also facilitated two projects from Mayo Clinic in the MILI Valuation Lab. I had been working collaboratively with our Division of Cardiovascular Diseases and Business Development Department at Mayo Clinic on a Remote Patient Monitoring project, and we chose to submit that project as one of the two submitted by Mayo Clinic for valuation.

How has the Carlson School affected your life and career?

The Carlson School not only gave me an exceptional education, but also built my competence and confidence to obtain that next career opportunity.

Why is the Carlson School important to the Twin Cities business community?

The Carlson School integrates into the diverse business community to create a real-world learning environment. As a student you have exposure to top business executives and real-world business challenges. The collaborative relationship between the Carlson School and the business community is mutually beneficial.


Jamie Plesser

Jamie Plesser, ’05 MBA
Senior Marketing Manager, Best Buy

Relationship to the Carlson School:

I have stayed connected with the school on the MBA recruiting front, as a sponsor of Brand Enterprise projects, and as a participant in the Undergraduate Mentor program.

How has the Carlson School affected your life and career?

My experiences there set me up to succeed. The balance of academics and real-world training helped me hit the ground running. I still find myself reflecting back on some of the marketing frameworks and case studies we used and I think about how I can integrate those into my current job.

Why is the Carlson School important to the Twin Cities business community?

When I first moved here, I was amazed to learn about all of the companies that call the Twin Cities home. I see the Carlson School as a pipeline of talent for many of these firms.


Continuing Education Header
Mary Carter

Mary Carter
Senior Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer, Andersen Corporation

Relationship to the Carlson School:

Several years ago I was asked to join the Executive Education Advisory Board for the Carlson School. Currently, we rely on the Carlson School as a source of talent for our university intern and recruitment programs, as well as a partner in leadership development forums such as Leadership by Andersen.

How has the Carlson School affected your life and career?

We have access to talented students and can customize development forums for the needs of our business with the Carlson School.

Why is the Carlson School important to the Twin Cities business community?

The Twin Cities is a vibrant business community that has a mutually beneficial relationship with the Carlson School. Businesses need talent, and the Carlson School needs opportunities for the talent it develops. It’s a formula that has served all of us well for many, many years.


Brenda Devlin

Brenda Devlin
Vice President, Human Resources, MMIC Group

Relationship to the Carlson School:

In a senior leadership team meeting last summer we were discussing the need to learn more about strategic thinking and decision making. I offered to look into it, and one of the senior team members suggested I contact the Carlson School’s Executive Education unit as a first step.

How has the Carlson School affected your life and career?

The Carlson School has helped my senior leadership team enhance its strategic thinking skills and develop decision-making tools, enabling us to make better and faster decisions as an organization.

Why is the Carlson School important to the Twin Cities business community?

The Carlson School has helped the MMIC senior leadership team move our organization forward and in the right direction. If an educational institution helps companies like MMIC in this way, then the Carlson School is helping improve our overall economy. That’s how important it is to our community.


Board of Overseers banner
The Carlson School Board of Overseers works closely with the school’s leadership to ensure a highly engaged relationship from local businesses to international corporations. View the Board of Overseers at http://www.carlsonschool.umn.edu/about/leadership/board-of-overseers.html.


Comments are closed.

TOC Home From the Dean Carlson in the Community Corporate Connections Carlson Reaching Out International Network Impact of Carlson Carlson Leadership Transitions Form and Function 5 Things 3 Questions Planting a SEED On the Rise Global Awareness 15 Years of Progress Opportunity of a Lifetime A Fresh Look at the Teenage Material World Investor Sentiment vs. Conventional Market Wisdom Full-Time MBA Students Embark on Global Discovery Class Notes Full Disclosure Doran Challenge Update What is GOLD Home

Carlton Connect

Facebook LinkedIn FlickrTwitter

What Carlson School connection does your company have?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...