Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Dr. Gary Insch named new dean of the College of Business and Innovation

Dr. Gary Insch became the new dean of The University of Toledo College of Business and Innovation in July.

Insch joins UT from West Virginia University, where he served as associate dean for graduate programs and associate professor of management.

“Dr. Insch brings a wealth of experience and will continue to accelerate the College of Business and Innovation’s upward trajectory,” said John Barrett, interim provost and executive vice president for academic affairs. “A dedicated teacher, he is committed to strong academics combined with experiential learning to provide the best opportunities for students. He will be an asset to this institution as well as the business community in the region.”

Insch has spent the past dozen years with West Virginia University, having joined the college as an assistant professor in 2002. He served as director of MBA programs and director of graduate programs before his promotion to associate dean in 2011. He also has served on the faculty of Boston University and Indiana University.

“I am thrilled to join The University of Toledo,” Insch said. “The College of Business and Innovation has a strong academic foundation and commitment to experiential learning opportunities and job placements. I am excited to be at a college that has such a strong connection to the community through relationships with alumni and area business leaders.”

Insch’s academic focus is on international entrepreneurship, small business planning, foreign direct investment and industrial purchasing. His industry experience includes eight years as assistant vice president and commercial loan officer for First Security Bank of Utah in Salt Lake City. He also served as general manager/business manager of Actors’ Repertory Theater Ensemble in Provo, Utah, and a financial consultant with the Small Business Development Center in Salt Lake City.

He is a member of the Academy of International Business, Academy of Management and Strategic Management Society.

Insch has a bachelor’s degree in finance from Brigham Young University, an MBA in international business and marketing from the University of Utah, a master’s degree in business administration from Indiana University, and a PhD in international business and strategy from Indiana University.

Still time to apply for the next Executive MBA cohort beginning October 10

There is still time to apply for the UT Toledo College of Business and Innovation next cohort for the Executive Masters of Business Administration (EMBA) program, which begins October 10.

COBI offers one of the most accelerated EMBA programs in America, enabling working professionals from across the region to complete their Executive MBA in just 12 months, with on-campus sessions just one weekend per month. During these 12 months, students have unprecedented opportunities including:
• Interaction with dedicated, recognized and highly qualified faculty teaching in the EMBA program
• Individualized executive coaching to enable student success
• Networking that will provide students with professional connections that will last a lifetime
• Online and on-site classes which offer a great deal of flexibility
• International study trip (7-10 days) that combines company meetings, cultural immersion and first-hand observation of how business works in the international setting

The Princeton Review has recognized the graduate programs, including the EMBA, in the UT College of Business as among the best since 2008. COBI also offers one of the most effective and efficient blended models of on-site and online courses, with classes meeting on campus just one weekend per month.

For more information, contact Darlene Howard at 419.530.7982, or email

You can learn more about the UT COBI Executive MBA program and check out the new video at

Deirdre Jones named director of Schmidt School of Professional Sales

Deirdre Jones, M.B.A., who served as associate director of the Edward H Schmidt School of Professional Sales in The University of Toledo College of Business and Innovation, was named director of the School in July.

"I look forward to all the opportunities and challenges that will demonstrate our commitment to developing the world’s future sales professionals…one student at a time," Jones said. "I am confident that we will continue to set the bar high in terms of learning, discovery, and outreach."

The Schmidt School's previous director Ellen Pullins, Ph.D., who was awarded a Fulbright Scholar grant to lecture and research at Hagaa Helia University in Finland during the 2014-2015 academic year, stepped down from the director position to pursue a sabbatical and the Fulbright opportunity. Pullins remains the Schmidt Research Professor of Sales and Sales Management, where she will continue with oversight for the curriculum and School’s academic research efforts. She also continues as a professor in UT COBI's department of marketing and international business.

"I am confident that the Schmidt School will continue to excel and enhance its national reputation for excellence under Deirdre's leadership," Pullins said.

"Everyone plays a critical role to ensure the sustainability and success of our top ranked program," Jones observed. "We have accomplished a great deal by launching and propelling our professional sales program. As such, we owe a considerable amount of gratitude to the vision, dedication and leadership displayed by the program's previous directors, Dave Reid, Richard Buehrer and Ellen."

Jones added that there are a number of exciting projects on the horizon for the Sales School, including growing the School's annual local sales competition into a national competition beginning February, 2016; expanding the ESSPS dedicated scholarship program, which just awarded its first scholarships this year; launching a student ambassador program; and establishing additional endowments.

Founded in 2000, the Edward H. Schmidt School of Professional Sales (ESSPS) is committed to providing high-quality educational programs to enhance the world of business practices related to professional sales and to continue to be a recognized leader in sales learning, discovery, and engagement. UT COBI is one of just two business colleges in the country to have three undergraduate designations and a MBA concentration devoted to professional sales.

COBI professor writes new book to help HR professionals solve business problems

There are more than 100,000 human resources managers in the United States, and they deal with issues emerging from America's 154.4 million workers.  But they are less likely to be a part of solving problems that occur at the top of the organization—problems like strategic focus, market competitiveness, and regulatory compliance.

Now available to help these professionals is a new book, Got A Solution? HR Approaches to 5 Common and Persistent Business Problems, by Dale J. Dwyer, Ph.D., professor of management at The University of Toledo College of Business and Innovation, and Sheri A. Caldwell, Ph.D., SPHR, HR director in the Grain Group at The Andersons.

"We determined what the common problems were by surveying CEOs, other senior managers, and HR practitioners from not-for-profit, for-profit, and government organizations. Each was asked, 'What are the top three (3) general business/organizational problems, issues, or concerns that keep you or your executives up at night?'  We also accessed social media posts on professional sites (e.g., LinkedIn).  The answers they gave were very similar.  From there, we got our five 'universal' problems," Dr. Dwyer said. 

Among the specific issues addressed in various chapters are: 
- Playing to Win or Playing Not to Lose: How Do We Become More Competitive in Our Marketplace?
- How Do We Deal with All the Changing Laws and Regulations?
- How Do We Attract and Retain the Most Competent Talent?

"Our premise in the book is that people want to do a good job and help their organizations," Dr. Dwyer continued, “but they are rarely asked for their help.  In fact, it is often the case that managers themselves, the systems they put in place, and the rewards/punishments meted out by the managers discourage employees’ creativity and helpfulness.“

"After reading Got A Solution?, business leaders, managers, and HR professionals will be better equipped to come up with workable and innovative solutions to the very problems that plague most organizations," he said.  "The benefit for HR folks in particular is that they will be in a strengthened position to help the organization reach its goals; in other words, they will be seen as a revenue-generator, rather than as a cost center, as they have often been perceived."

"This book was a joy to write," Dr. Dwyer said, "primarily because it addresses what HR gurus have been calling upon HR professionals to do for the last ten years:  get a seat at the table where decisions are being made.  However, nobody has ever described to them how to do that.  In convincing senior managers that they deserve that seat, HR has to demonstrate actual results that move the organization forward.  The sooner managers realize that their employees can help them if they'd only let them, the sooner organizations can begin to solve some of their most pressing and recurring problems."

Dr. Dwyer's recent book Got a Minute? The 9 Lessons Every HR Professional Must Learn to Be Successful, also co-authored by Dr. Caldwell, was recently the best-selling book sold by the Society for Human Resource Management, the world’s largest organization for human resource management professionals.

"We hope Got A Solution?  helps HR folks learn how to move an organization forward by using the people there to help them," Dr. Dwyer said.

Got A Solution? can be ordered at

COBI hosts fourth Technology Camp for high school students

Forty high school students from 25 Toledo, Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan high schools participated in the fourth annual Technology Camp, presented by the UT College of Business and Innovation in July.

Students had the chance to create their own apps, learn about modern business applications of technology, and actually build a computer.

“Our Technology Camp invites curious students into the world of technology where they will explore business technology and how it applies to their daily lives," said COBI Senior Associate Dean Terribeth Gordon-Moore. "They had the opportunity to explore both the power and the fun of information technology (IT), and we know that some of the students have been so enthralled by this experience that they will decide to study IT.”

"Computer technology is becoming an essential life skill for young people," she added, "and this Camp was an outstanding opportunity for them to immerse themselves in a technology learning experience at literally no cost to them."

Corporate sponsors for the 2014 Camp were ASUS and Eaton Corporation.

COBI alum named dean at University of Evansville

Greg Rawski, who earned his Ph.D. in manufacturing management from The University of Toledo College of Business and Innovation, has been named dean of the Schroeder Family School of Business Administration at the University of Evansville. Rawski had been associate dean at the University of Evansville, where he has been since 2005.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

$70,000 Grant funds unique research project involving business and radiology

A unique research project involving both the Accounting Department within The University of Toledo College of Business and Innovation and the Radiology Department at the UT Medical Center recently received a $70,000 grant from the United Arab of Emirates University.

“The Impact of Managers’ Supervisory Style on the Relation between Debt Covenants and Earnings Management: A Neuroscience Imaging Approach" will utilize neuroscientific research in an attempt to capture and understand the behavior of managers in different debt covenant violation situations, and its relation on supervisory styles.

Debt covenants are agreements between banks and borrowers that dictate the way a company manages its finances while indebted to the bank. These covenants are tested on a regular basis during the term of the debt. Violations happen when the company is not meeting any of these covenants.

Dr. Hassan HassabElnaby, Chair of the Accounting Department in the UT College of Business and Innovation, said, "We are using a very novel approach to investigate an accounting/business issue. To my knowledge, no study in the area of agency theory and debt contract is utilizing this approach."

He explained that neuroscientific evidence shows that activities in the ventral striatum of the brain would increase with bad information and decrease with good information.

"We argue that human brains have the ability to implement ‘automatic’ processes of bad and good information to make rational managerial accounting decisions," he said.  "Therefore, we will rely on the functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) to capture and encode the neural activity in the ventral striatum. The results of this interdisciplinary study will contribute to the understanding of manager’s behavior and provide crucial implications for the practice and research in management accounting."

Dr. HassabElnaby added, "This type of research is very costly and business research grants are almost non-existent at the required level. While attending an international conference, I was talking with Dr. Ahmed Abdel-Maksoud, a researcher from the United Arab of Emirates University, about a dream research project that I want to do and the difficulty of funding this research. I wrote the basic proposal and sent it to him and other researchers to form a research team. I was lucky enough to have all the researchers I approached interested in the idea, and they made significant contributions to develop the grant proposal. We applied for the grant and last December we were granted about $70,000 over two years for our research project. Almost $55,000 is budgeted for the MRI experiment that will be done at the University of Toledo’s Medical Center under the supervision of both Dr. Haitham Elsamaloty and Dr. Xin Wang."

Dr. Amal Said, Associate Professor of Accounting at UT COBI, said, "We are planning on conducting the experiment on 100 subjects. Each subject will have to complete a survey first to capture their managerial style, then their responses to the same nine different debt covenant scenarios will be examined under the MRI."

Dr. Said added, "Earnings management behavior is an ethical question and has been the topic of interest for researchers, practitioners and regulators. We expect that understanding the thinking and decision making processes of managers can assist in mitigating unethical behavior in the future. The findings of this research project can be incorporated into training material, models and/or packages that are delivered to accountants and business leaders on the role of managers’ personal characteristics (neural activity), the leadership style they follow, and the design and use of management control systems in controlling the suboptimal behavior/practices of managers in relation to firm resources."

Dr. Elsamaloty, UTMC Radiology Department, said. "I was consulted by Dr. Hassabelnaby on the possibility of implementing the study using the imaging tool. I was interested and we decided to collaborate in this interesting research project."

He explained that this is a unique study, because "We’ll use the high sensitivity and resolution of our 3T functional MRI in evaluating managers under different conditions using different scenarios.  We have performed functional MRI research in post-traumatic patients, but to the best of my knowledge this will be the first study at UT, and possibly in the nation, to evaluate decision making for managers."

Dr. Wang, Assistant Professor, Psychiatry, UT Health Science campus, said, "We completed a study with a kinesiology group from the main campus in 2011-2013. The research scans increase the use of MRI scanner in addition to clinical use and other studies. It will compete for the limited scanning time, but we will try our best to arrange the scans."

Dr. HassabElnaby said, "We expect the study to take about 18 months and to yield multiple papers. My co-authors and I hope that this study will be a breakthrough and will open new lines of research in accounting, business, and other disciplines."