Monday, May 5, 2014

End of Year News

We are quickly approaching graduation in the BCU Business Department, and with that, a flurry of end of year activity.  We have some exciting successes this year. 

Our Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program has been reVITAlized (pardon the pun) thanks to our new Economics/Accounting Professor, Tommy Raulson.  He led our Accounting students through over 300 tax returns this year. 

The Enactus team brought home National success this year for the 11th straight year, including being named one of 8 national finalists in the Johnson and Johnson Cares competition for their work in Tanzania Africa.   

We have exciting plans for youth entrepreneurship in the works and have formed partnerships with Beyond the Bell and the Sioux City and Heelan school systems.  More on that in the fall.   

We are sad to announce that one of our most popular professors, Dr. Anne Power, will be leaving us at the end of this semester.  We wish her well.  Thank you for your support of the Briar Cliff University business department.  Have a great summer, and we’ll talk with you next fall!


Marilyn Eastman

Thursday, March 6, 2014

March Madness

Greetings from the Cliff!

It has been a busy few months for the business department.  We have collaborated on a new Social Media minor and added a 3+1 BA/MBA program The MBA is also available to graduate students by itself.  We are excited to get these programs up and running. In fact, we have signed up our first Social Media minor just last week.

Last week, the Eldon and Regina Roth Center for Entrepreneurship and Enactus team coordinated Entrepalooza – a celebration of entrepreneurship in Siouxland.  While this is a regional event, we hosted three events – Jumpstart Market, Entrepreneurship kickoff speech, and Swimming with the Sharks.

The Enactus team partnered with Beyond the Bell to provide entrepreneurship training to elementary school children at Leeds school.  It was very successful and will be expanded next year to more schools.  Below is a picture of some of the participants selling their products to city manager Bob Padmore.  Dom Wetzbarger (in the suit) is the co-president of Enactus.

This year the Entrepalooza kickoff speaker was Tal Dehtiar.  Prior to his presentation, he had dinner with some BCU business students.  Tal is a social entrepreneur who started a shoe company in Ethiopia to provide jobs in Africa.  He believes that it is better to give a person a job so they can buy shoes for their family than it is to give them a pair of shoes.  The shoes are handmade and beautiful.  Check out his web site  

In its fifth year, Swimming with the Sharks has provided Siouxland entrepreneurs with a little help for their young businesses.  Based on ABC’s Shark Tank, finalists pitch their ideas to a panel business experts and usually receive a grant.  Past winners have included Beth Trejo of Chatterkick and Nathan and Chelsea Schulz of   Shown below are two of the winners who are also BCU students.  Mark Samuelson won a grant for his Perry Hills Aronia berry farm (think the next pomegranate superfood) and Anthony Rossi won for his designated driving service Double D’s.  Anthony is set to launch his business next week just in time for St. Patty’s Day.  He is shown below with his moped. Mark is pitching his idea for an irrigation system. 

Hope things are well with you all.
Judy Thompson

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Happy November!

Things have been eventful in the Business Department this month! The accounting department began November with a trip to Ankeny, Iowa for the Iowa Society of Certified Public Accountants 2013 CPA Career Awareness Conference at Des Moines Area Community College.  Three faculty members and thirteen accounting and business students travelled to the conference which proved to be an informative event. Students were able to choose from three different breakout sessions covering topics ranging from “Forensic Accounting” to “Preparing for the CPA Exam”.  The conference concluded with a Q & A session where students were given the opportunity to ask any question about careers in accounting and earning a CPA certification. 

 The Principal's Patti Bell leads a panel session on opportunities in the insurance industry for CPAs.
"If I only Knew Then What I Know Now" panel; student Q&A session.

After the conference concluded, we headed over to Zombie Burger. Aside from the disturbing name and wall art, the food was excellent! 

Mark Nielsen, assistant professor of accounting, and Kevin Hubert, Briar Cliff University accounting student at Zombie Burger.
Sydney Hoffman, Briar Cliff University accounting student at Zombie Burger.

This month, the Accounting Department has been working to promote the CPA Review Course that is beginning on December 2nd.  We have opened the program up to the general public and anyone in the area that is interested in sitting for their CPA exam.  We will offer two formats: an online option and a face-to-face option. We hope to see a large group of interested individuals come this December! If anyone would like any additional information regarding the review course, please contact me (Shari Fowler) at 712-279-5562 or visit the following website.

We only have a few more weeks in the fall semester, and the faculty are starting to prepare for a number of student and faculty Christmas gatherings here at Briar Cliff.  We are so proud of the changes that are happening in our Business Department this year, and we hope to continue to grow and evolve so that we can continue to serve the Siouxland area. We all wish you a Happy Thanksgiving!
Shari Fowler

Friday, October 4, 2013

Fall at BCU

I am writing this as Sioux City is getting the first nice rain in a long time.  The trees on campus are beginning to show a change in season and students are settled into the fall semester.

On Monday, September 30, several Briar Cliff students attended Sioux City Growth Organization’s (SCGO) Young Professional Day.  They heard from SCGO members on the importance of networking and getting involved in communities.  Iowa governor Terry Branstad and economic development director Debbie Durham urged young adults to take risks and start their own businesses.

SCGO panel - Debi Durhan, Beth Trejo, and Dustin Pratt (L to R)

SCGO panel - Dustin Pratt, Jeana Goosman, Rick Bertrand, and Kyle Kelly (L to R)
Iowa Governor Terry Branstad
BCU students

BCU student asking Gov. Branstad a question.
The next day four business department faculty members (Mark Rossi, Shari Fowler, Tommy Raulston, and I) went to Great West Casualty in South Sioux to hear about career opportunities in insurance in general and Great West in particular.  We got to chat with the numerous Briar Cliff alums that now work at Great West.  It was great meeting up with them.

 October Enactus meeting in new Heelan Atrium

Judy Thompson

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Welcome from the Briar Cliff Business Department!
Bringing in the New - September 2013
It is that time of year again. We are four weeks into a new semester and rolling right along. With the new year comes new places and new faces. The renovation of Heelan Hall is complete. If you are on campus make sure to stop by and see the Atrium and enjoy a refreshment from the new Java City. Explore the new classrooms and the renovation of the old from blackboards on the wall to state of the art classrooms. Stop by on the ground level to see the new location of the bookstore just off the atrium.
The business department has undergone some changes and additions as well. Three new professors have joined the ranks of the business department in the last year; Shari Fowler, Mark Nielsen and Tommy Raulston.  

  Shari Fowler
Shari and her family come to us by way of the University of Alabama at Huntsville. While there Shari taught a number of accounting courses both in the face-to-face and online mode. She was also involved in private accounting. Shari received her undergraduate degree as well as her master’s degree in accounting from the University of Alabama. She will shortly have her CPA licensure and is teaching Principles of Accounting, Intermediate Accounting I and II in addition to governmental accounting. She has also been the driving force in the revitalization of the CPA review course which will start up this month.

Mark Nielsen

Mark Nielsen is originally from Cedar Falls, Iowa. He received his undergraduate degree from Augustana University in Sioux Falls, South Dakota and his MBA with a finance emphasis from the University of Iowa. Mark, who is also a CPA, was engaged in private accounting before joining the business department. Mark will be providing instruction in accounting as well as teaching Corporate Finance, Money and Banking, and Production and Operations. Mark will also be assisting with CPA review course. 

Tommy Raulston

Tommy Raulston comes to Briar Cliff from Midwestern University at Wichita Falls, Texas where he served as an associate professor of accounting.   Tommy received his undergraduate degree in accounting and a master’s degree in Economics from Oklahoma State University.  He is also a certified public accountant and was engaged in private accounting in addition to his work at Midwestern.  Tommy will be providing instruction in areas of accounting and economics.  
As you can see there is a great deal of positive change going on at the Cliff!  We in the department invite all alums and old friends to grab a cup of coffee or drink from Java City and stop by to rekindle old friendships and to make new ones. 
Mark Rossi