by Corrine Casanova
Dean Greg Mosier of the University of Nevada, Reno’s College of Business is proud of his part in building a legacy of globally competitive leaders. A year after becoming dean in 2007, he created the Nevada Global Business Program. This unique study abroad program has students traveling to London, Toronto, New York, Singapore and Sydney where they visit corporations that have an international presence. Often these companies have offices in Nevada and Reno/Sparks too. These include Microsoft (Singapore), Haws Corporation (Singapore), Barrick Gold Corporation (Toronto), Server Technology (London) and IGT (London).
“Ultimately, traveling to these places shows the students the connectivity of international business. If you work with one of these companies locally, you are talking to people all over the world. Seeing is worth a thousand words,” said Mosier. The programs include a month-long online classroom commitment followed by a one-week stay abroad with the exception of the London program which is a four-week intensive experience. There are typically about 20 students in each class.
Being both global and local is something for which The College of Business is known. “For a long time we were regarded as a local college choice. That has changed. Today we have faculty and students from all over the world. My philosophy is: Think globally, act locally. We have exchange partners in China, Germany, Poland and Mexico bringing international awareness to our institution. We also have local engagement through the Nevada Small Business Development Center (SBDC), the internship programs we offer, our corporate partners and the Ozmen Center for Entrepreneurship,” said Mosier.
Early on in Mosier’s term as dean, the recession hit and packed a punch. Mosier recalls making a lot of tough decisions at that time which involved cutting programs and personnel. But in the end, the school came out stronger and leaner. Despite the plummeting economy at the time, an online Executive MBA program was born in partnership with Extended Studies. Mosier recognized that students need flexibility as many have full-time jobs and families. Today, 100 percent of the students are already employed when they first enroll. The online Executive MBA is getting recognition nationally as well being ranked No. 33 of 199 schools in the “2018 Best Online MBA Programs” category by U.S. News & World Report. It is ranked above Boise State University (#51), George Washington University (#54), Villanova University (#61) and Portland State University (#76). The online MBA programs rankings are based on different factors such as admissions selectivity, reputation among peer institutions and academic and career support services for students.
Currently, enrollment in The School of Business is approximately 3,400 students. Mosier would like to see that number climb to 4,000. To accomplish this vision, he shared an exercise he did with his staff. He took out a map of the United States and placed a bow compass drafting tool with the precision point on Reno. He drew a circle around Reno where recruitment efforts will be strong. The area includes the southern portion of Oregon, northern California and all of Nevada. “As the workforce needs are changing, we are adapting. We provide quality graduates that can fill those workforce needs. In other words, we want enough highly skilled graduates so that employers have a large pool to choose from. We are the first and only Ph.D. program in Economics in Nevada. One of our newest offerings is a Ph.D. program in Business Administration. In Fall 2019, this Ph.D. program will offer a management concentration focused on organizational behavior, strategy, entrepreneurship and behavioral decision making,” said Mosier.
The College was founded in 1956 and received accreditation five years later. As gaming plays a big role in Nevada’s history and future, the College incorporated course offerings that focused on the gaming industry. Less than a decade after its inception, the College conducted the first Intercollegiate Simulated Business Games. In 1974, they sponsored the first International Conference on Gambling and Risk Taking. They have close relationships with Reno and Las Vegas gaming companies. In fact, IGT is a corporate partner of the College and utilizes space from the College to facilitate work experience for students who have internships or work there.
What can we expect within the next two years from the College of Business? For starters, specifics about a new building. The College’s current home, the Nazir Ansari Business Building was built in 1980. While student engagement is an important initiative in the College, the layout of the building isn’t conducive to that and they have run out of office, appropriate teaching, student and outreach space.
The faculty are busily preparing for the College’s next 2019 accreditation by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business—the gold standard of business school accreditation. They are in the process of expanding their Nevada Global Business Program and adding three more countries to the offering. They are also working on faculty endowments from interested supporters and donors which allows the College to make commitments into the future knowing they have the financial resources available to do so.
“We have very generous people here and we have big dreams and want to do more. What is often not understood is the complexity and sophistication of our programs. For example, this fall we will host a Fulbright Scholar from Lanzhou, China, Professor He Xin, his research program is in operations management. One of our new faculty hires in economics helped advance our stature in research about entrepreneurship policy. Our faculty come from diverse disciplines and the quality of our academic programs and students is high. Our students not only understand the practice of business as an academic pursuit, they have an opportunity to live it by studying abroad and working on internships in local companies,” concluded Mosier.