WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – To be successful one must continue learning and adapting to a changing world. That's the advice Richard A. Noll, chief executive officer of Hanesbrands Inc., gave to the graduating classes of Wake Forest University's Babcock Graduate School of Management at the Sunday, May 18, hooding ceremony. One of those changes is globalization, Noll explained. "Globalization is here and it's here to stay," he said. "It has even come to a lowly underwear company in Winston-Salem."
Of the 263 graduates, 138 attended the 36th graduation ceremonies for the business school. Graduating classes included the full-time, the evening and fast-track executive MBA programs in Winston-Salem, and the evening and Saturday MBA programs in Charlotte as well as the first two MA in Management program classes. "Be proud of your accomplishment today, but continue to invest in yourselves," Noll added.
Dean Ajay Patel, who is also a Babcock research professor of finance, said that over the past two years, many of the students had the opportunity to become more culturally sensitive through the school's international trips and the student-driven Project Nicaragua. Since December 2006, Babcock students and faculty have been working to help small business owners in and around Managua, Nicaragua, to improve the impoverished area's stagnant economy through business seminars. "The first trip when 18 students went to lead a business seminar in March 2007 was life-changing for not only the students and the faculty but also the participants," Patel said. "What began as a way to help students at a vocational school in Managua has turned into a sustainable business model that is now going to be used in Africa and hopefully one day Asia," he added.
Megan Glaser and Christopher Burch, two of the founders of Project Nicaragua, received the Distinguished Community Service Award given as the result of extraordinary service to the Babcock community and society as a whole. Burch also received the Stephen B. Tips Award for Outstanding Character. Samuel Miller and Christopher Rees received the Robert N. White Award for the most outstanding Management Consulting Practicum. Zachary Denton, Emily Blake Hinman, Christopher Rees, Richard Rutledge Jr. and Michael Scott were recognized for academic distinction, while Karl Burns, Zachary Denton, Christopher Smith and Daniel Wright were recognized for their managerial potential by receiving the Babcock Award, which focused on scholastic performance, leadership and integrity. Anagha Jagtap received the Luther Award, which is given to recognize the international student who best shares his or her insight and expertise with others, fostering a spirit of cooperation and better international understanding. Rachel Kingery received the Andrea Mitchell Metzler Award and Marketing Award, which is given to the student who has shown the most potential in marketing. Michael Scott also received the Finance Award and the Operations Management Award and Wiley Becker received the Entrepreneurship Award.
The full-time MBA graduating class gave the educator of the year award to Frederick H. Harris, while the 2008 graduating class of the MA in Management Program chose Jonathan P. Pinder as its educator of the year. As he congratulated his colleagues, Patel added that the faculty at Babcock is the heart, soul and true strength of the school.
Wake Forest's Babcock School offers five MBA programs: full-time, evening and fast-track executive MBA programs in Winston-Salem, and evening and Saturday MBA programs in Charlotte. The school also offers a 10-month MA in Management program designed specifically for recent college graduates who have majored in liberal arts and sciences and want to learn fundamentals of business and management.