Friday, July 29, 2011

Duke Professor to Apply Hayek to Current Economy

Bruce Caldwell, the director of the Center for the History of Political Economy and a research professor of economics at Duke University, will visit the Winston-Salem campus on Thursday, Sept. 13, from 5-6:15 pm. He will discuss the topic: Insights from Friedrich Hayek for These Trying Times.

Hayek, a Nobel Prize winner, was best known for his defense of classical liberalism and free market capitalism against collectivist and socialist thought.

Caldwell will appear at Greene Hall, Room 145.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Accounting 3-2-1

Diverse high school students from across North Carolina spent three days and two nights on the Wake Forest University campus to learn about accounting.

Deloitte, Dixon Hughes PLLC, Ernst & Young, KPMG LLP, PricewaterhouseCoopers and Resnick Group joined Wake Forest University Schools of Business accountancy faculty and staff to create the Accounting 3-2-1 program in 2010. On July 15-17, 40 students attended the second annual weekend at Wake Forest.

“We are really trying to increase awareness of accounting as a profession and a career in general with diverse students before they get into college,” said Yvonne Hinson, associate professor of accounting and Dean of Wake Forest Charlotte Programs.

“Many think of law and medicine as professions and do not realize that the accounting profession has its own certification exam and own set of ethical and professional standards – just like medicine and law," she added. "We are trying to give the students an awareness of exactly what accounting is and what accountants do. “

Mikayla Kinlock, a rising senior from Hickory Ridge High School came to the Accounting 3-2-1 program to see how she can connect her personal passions with a career. “I want to go into a form of business. I have done well in math and am good with people, so I would like to tie that into a career like accounting,” she said.

General career topics like Top 10 Tips for College Success, Building Your Personal Brand and Resume Preparation were also addressed during the weekend. The scholars participated in a business etiquette dinner and watched a “dress for business” fashion show.

“I came to the program because I think it is a good basis no matter what you decide to do,” said Brooke Wilner, a rising senior from the Epiphany School in New Bern. “I am leaning towards studying business, law or engineering. Regardless, you need to be accountable with your personal finances.”

Throughout the weekend, students stayed on campus and got a feel for college life while working on team projects. Each of the sponsoring firms gave a group of six to seven students a challenge to work on and present during the farewell luncheon.

Wilner, who comes from a very small school, appreciated the opportunity to learn alongside talented students from around the state. “Everyone has been so open and friendly and you can have intelligent conversations with them,” she said.

Event organizers expect some of the relationships built with the young scholars during the Weekend at Wake Forest will continue.

“We hope that some of the students will consider Wake Forest, but we are also happy if we can get them to consider accounting no matter what university they choose,” Hinson said.

Marcus Johnson, a rising senior from Lexington High School is already considering Wake Forest. “I like numbers, currency and math. At college night at my high school, I met a Wake Forest admissions counselor who told me how in five years you can get your bachelor’s and master’s degree and take the CPA exam.”

Applications for the Weekend at Wake Forest Accounting 3-2-1 program become available in March. Interested students should contact their high school guidance counselor for details. The program is offered free of charge, thanks to the generous support of the sponsoring firms.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Meet the Man Behind the Gift

By Nathan Hatch, President of Wake Forest University (published in the Charlotte Observer on July 21)

Porter Byrum’s recent gift of Park Road Shopping Center to Wake Forest University, Queens University and Wingate University is more than just the latest example of generosity from a local philanthropist.

It is indicative of Mr. Byrum’s adherence to the principles instilled in him by his grandfather and his parents. It demonstrates his belief that perseverance can overcome seemingly insurmountable obstacles, that education equals opportunity, and that helping others is the key to a meaningful and well-lived life.

Porter Byrum’s grandfather, Isaac, grew up in Chowan County near the coast and fought in the Battle of Gettysburg, where he was seriously injured and lost a leg. After spending time in a prison hospital in Maryland, Isaac Byrum walked back to North Carolina using a wooden leg, a device now on display in the Museum of the Albemarle.

Against great odds, he carved a small farm out of the forest to provide for his family of nine.

Porter Byrum’s father, John Thomas Byrum, felt called to the Baptist ministry as a teenager and graduated from Wake Forest in 1908. His senior thesis, written in his own hand, still exists in the University archives and tells the story of their home church, Ballard’s Bridge Baptist Church, which dates from 1781. Ministering to churches in Winston-Salem, Wilmington and Chowan County, John Thomas raised a family of deep conviction. Their resources, however, were not as abundant as their faith. Mr. Byrum recalls hunting and fishing with his brothers – not as sport but to enhance the family table. Mr. Byrum, 91, continues to be an avid sportsman and lover of nature to this day.

Mr. Byrum’s parents were passionate about their faith and about educating their five sons, despite financial challenges. Scholarships allowed four of them, including Porter, to attend Wake Forest University.

“Daddy had one ambition in life: to college educate his five boys,” Byrum said. “He lived to see all five of us attain college degrees.” Porter and his brother, David, became lawyers, his brother, Conwell, a physician, and his brother, Paul, a teacher. A fifth brother, John, chose to study engineering at North Carolina State University.

Porter Byrum was a stalwart of “the Greatest Generation.” After college, he enlisted in the army but was not allowed to become an officer, as he was color-blind. He was involved in extensive combat, including the Battle of the Bulge. A crack marksman since the days of his youth, Porter received a battlefield promotion to lieutenant for his skill in directing artillery fire to enemy positions.

He also served in Korea, where he was part of the U.S. military government immediately after the Japanese were expelled.

Mr. Byrum remembers those years with a novelist’s eye for detail. He can recall what it was like being shot at in a foxhole, to endure winter without proper clothing, and, as a young officer, to be responsible for compelling citizens from a small German town to visit the ravages of a concentration camp only days after its liberation.

Porter Byrum moved to Charlotte in the early 1950s and set up his legal practice. He applied his talent shrewdly and creatively, with a rare ability to solve problems for clients and assist with their business deals.

For nearly 60 years, he practiced law in the way he thought best and allocated time to projects of his own choosing. He never charged clients an hourly fee, nor for the time he spent exploring whether he would accept a case; billing was premised on the actual help he delivered. To him, the work was more about a much broader purpose – making a difference and helping others, living the spirit of Pro Humanitate (for humanity) that he learned as a youth and as a student at Wake Forest.

From its earliest days in the 1950s, Mr. Byrum was involved with the Park Road Shopping Center. In 1967, Mr. Byrum bought the center and has been involved in actively managing it ever since. Scores of businesses located within the center attest to Mr. Byrum’s distinct style – firm and fair, supportive, committed to long-term relationships. Mr. Byrum has always taken a rare personal interest in the well-being and success of Park Road’s merchants.

The most remarkable thing about Mr. Byrum is his steady purpose. Never distracted by success, he continues to demonstrate an unwavering commitment to his principles, as well as his friends and colleagues. He, in fact, lives in the same home he built more than 50 years ago, and his life remains remarkably straightforward and uncomplicated.

Mr. Byrum speaks often of the influence of his parents, John and Ida Ward Byrum, and their strong moral compass. Their abiding principles of doing right and doing good are wonderfully reflected in the life of their son.

We are grateful indeed that this special man chose to extend that same opportunity and challenge to future generations of worthy students.

Kids, Family Business ... and Consequences

The Wake Forest University Business Center invites you to join us for a special forum customized for family business owners and their families. Wake Forest committed to preparing students for a successful college-to-career transition, and financial literacy is an important piece in that preparation.

Rich Morris, the co-author of Kids, Wealth and Consequences, will provide parents with the motivation to start communicating their financial values, and the tools to do so with confidence.

Topics will include:

1. Talking to Kids about Money: Who, when, what, how and why?

2. Defining the Family's Financial Values: How can parents instill financial values? To what extent do parents model them?

3. Successful Choices: How can one harmoniously integrate a family and business, and provide children successful and happy career choices?

Rich Morris is a principal of ROI Consulting. Previously, he worked at his family's 80-year-old, privately held company, Fel-Pro, until its sale in 1998. Rich has spoken at family business centers across the country, and has been quoted in the Wall Street Journal, Crain's Chicago Business, and Family Business magazine.

This Family Business Center forum is open to WFU Parents, FBC members, sponsors and their guests. Contact Kathy Baker, FBC Director, for information on FBC membership and guest policies. The event is scheduled for Friday, Sept. 16, from 9:30 am- 1 pm at the Graylyn Conference Center.

Wake Students to Attend KPMG's Fast Forward

A pair of Wake Forest University Schools of Business students have been selected to attend Fast Forward, a three-day leadership development program sponsored by KPMG LLP.

Natalie Friedman, a senior accountancy major from Southport, Conn., and Melanie Green, a senior accountancy major from Chester, Va., will join more than 100 top students from the United States and Canada to attend this elite program in Hollywood, Calif., from July 27-29.

Students taking part in Fast Forward were selected they exhibit KPMG’s core values and are leaders on campus and in their communities.

“The Fast Forward program is a great opportunity for the top students at KPMG’s most heavily recruited business programs to get a head start on understanding the public accounting profession and how important their leadership skills will be as they pursue careers in audit, tax or advisory services,” said Stacy Sturgeon, KPMG National Managing Partner for University Relations and Recruiting.

The program was created to provide participants with an inside look at a career in public accounting while building key skills that will help in all aspects of life. The curriculum, specifically designed for Fast Forward, is designed to teach students about the public accounting profession, KPMG and situational leadership.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Can China Save the World?

Chinese and international political and business leaders now look to Chinese consumers to replace their American and European counterparts and rescue the global economy.
Pressure for the Chinese to consume more is certain to continue in coming years. But what are the implications for China and the world of Chinese consumers adopting the lifestyles of the middle classes in developed economies?
Dr. Karl Gerth, a university lecturer in modern Chinese history from Oxford University, will explain how - from the brands we buy to the biosphere we inhabit - we are all being affected by the everyday choices made by ordinary Chinese, whether we do business there or not.
The lecture is scheduled for Thursday, Sept. 8, from 6-7:30 pm at 145 Greene Hall.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Changes Planned for the Evening Program

As we begin our 2011–2012 academic year, I wanted to make you aware of several structural and leadership changes in our Winston-Salem Evening MBA program.

Beginning July 1, program management responsibilities will be split between a dedicated program manager and an academic director. This change brings a consistent management structure to all of our graduate programs, and reflects our continuing effort to provide a high quality graduate educational experience. In addition to this structural change, we are pleased to announce the following personnel changes.

Pat Peacock has been named program manager for the Winston-Salem Evening MBA program. Pat will have responsibility for managing the entire student experience including developing and maintaining the program culture. Pat will be your primary point of contact for all questions and issues, whether they are academic or otherwise.

The program director role will be retitled to academic director to better reflect a refined focus on the curricular dimensions of the Evening program.

Bill Davis will continue in the role of academic director. His focus will be on executing and integrating the delivery of our curriculum and continuously improving our offering.

Dr. Marlane Mowitz will be transitioning into the career coaching position for the incoming students in the Winston-Salem Evening program. Marlane brings 20 years of career counseling and career services director experience to her position. In addition, she has 15 years of business experience in retail store management and energy utility public relations. She has earned a Doctorate of Philosophy in Higher Education Administration, Master of Arts in Organizational Communications and Business Administration and Bachelor of Science in Vocational Education. She has consulting and training experience with corporations including Hewlett-Packard, AT&T, IBM and United Way. Her areas of training expertise include Myers-Briggs Type Indicator and Strong Interest Inventory assessments, career planning, job searching, team development and customer service skills.

Mercy Eyadiel will be joining the Schools of Business as executive director of employer relations in mid-July. She joins us from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business, where she served as director of alumni and Sloan Career Services. She will be leading the Employer Relations efforts across all of Wake Forest, not just the Schools of Business. She will be focused on growing relationships in the employer community with the ultimate goal of developing job opportunities for graduates across the entire University.

I hope that you are excited about the enhancements that these changes will bring to our program, and will join me in thanking those who have served in these roles over the past several years.

Dean Reinemund

Monday, July 11, 2011

Leveraging Your MBA

The Wake Forest Evening MBA program is hosting a evening of advice from previous graduates on how to best use the degree. Come hear from alumni on how they utilized their graduate business education and experiences to leverage themselves professionally within their current workplace, or within their respective industries.

The event will be held Tuesday, July 12, from 6-7 pm at Worrell 1106.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

WFU Planning Study of Family Owned Businesses

The Wake Forest University Family Business Center has partnered with SBR Consulting LLC to launch a study on family owned businesses. As family-owned businesses navigate through our “new economic normal” they are recognizing the value of staying competitive, engaging and leveraging talent and working within the constraints of the economic environment. To assist in these areas, the research study will provide proprietary data to family owned businesses and be accomplished through three objectives.

The study has three objectives:
• Measure the levels and levers of employee engagement at each participating company specific to their ability to attract and retain talent.
• Provide a benchmark of the participating companies (in the aggregate) against other participating companies to see how they measure in regard to engagement.
• Produce proprietary family owned business data to assist the Family Business Center in their outreach and support of family owned businesses.

“We are really excited to partner with SBR Consulting to produce our own research on such an important aspect of family business,” said Kathy Baker, the director of the Family Business Center. She continued, “I encourage all family businesses in the area to participate as the information we collect will be invaluable.”

SBR Consulting, an independent human resource consulting firm, will conduct a confidential survey of each company’s employees to gauge their opinions and perceptions of their company, identify what is important to them in a workplace and assess their engagement levels. SBR Consulting will include specific questions to provide data on the benefits and challenges of being family owned and gain greater understanding of the family-owned business community in North Carolina.

If a company is interested in participating please contact Kathy Baker at (336) 758-3568 or The deadline to submit the registration form is Aug. 31. More information can be found at

The Family Business Center was established in 1999 to address the issues faced by closely held and family firms. It was the first program initiated under the Angell Center for Entrepreneurship at Wake Forest Schools of Business. Utilizing the capabilities and educational resources available at Wake Forest, in our community and nationally, the Family Business Center provides closely held and family firms the assistance they need to grow and succeed from generation to generation.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Is the American Dream Dying?

Stars and stripes. Fireworks. Red, white and blue. For many Americans, summertime is a colorful celebration of freedom, independence and patriotism – particularly around the 4th of July.
This summer, however, David Coates, professor of political science and Worrell Chair of Anglo-American Studies, suggests the ongoing financial crisis has put the American dream of independence beyond the reach of many of our nation’s citizens. He says it’s a frightening reality explored in his new book, Making the Progressive Case: Toward a Stronger U.S. Economy.
Just as the nation was changed forever by the terrorist attacks in 2001, the U.S. economy was irrevocably altered by the financial meltdown of 2008, says Coates, who is also a regular Huffington Post political columnist.
“America needs a wake-up call. It’s time for all of us to realize we’re not on the same playing field anymore,” Coates says. “Politicians in both parties should take off their blinders and look at the challenges that lie before us.”
Offering facts on each side of the debate, Making the Progressive Case examines the myriad economic problems facing the Obama administration and the nation as well as possible remedies.
Given the rapidly changing political landscape and the spotlight on the 2012 presidential race, his viewpoints offer new insights on key issues. Topics include Obama’s response to the financial meltdown, the green economy, regulated markets and managed trade. The book also includes in-depth information on the roots of the crisis and an economics primer for the average American.
Coates hopes students reading the book will realize that historical solutions don’t necessarily work in new circumstances, which is why he advocates combining knowledge and efforts to put America on a stronger economic path. He says reckless budget cutting and brief stimulus packages are not enough because fundamental problems require fundamental reforms.
“My hope is that this book will help us move beyond the partisan quagmire and bring forth new ideas and new ways of solving our main economic problems,” Coates says. “By presenting both sides of the arguments, the goal is to counter the rhetoric and generate real ideas.”
More information about his latest book is available at

~ Katie Neal ('03), Office of Communications and External Relations