Author: Sydney Miller


About Sydney Miller

PMBA 44, former journalist & editor, and perpetual student. I also work in Olin's Marketing & Communications Department, behind the scenes of Olin's social media accounts and the Olin Blog. You can always submit questions, post ideas, posts, or digital signs for promoting events. Just shoot me an email:

Jared Jennings, Assistant Professor of Accounting, is one of six WashU faculty members honored with Emerson Teaching Awards. Prof. Jennings, along with WashU professors Julie M. Bugg (Arts & Sciences), J. Mark Meacham (Engineering & Applied Science), Steven D. Taff (Medicine), William E. Wallace (Arts & Sciences), and Cheryl Wassenaar (Design & Visual Arts), were recognized at the Emerson Excellence in Teaching reception on Nov. 12.

The Emerson Excellence in Teaching Program recognizes St. Louis-area educators for their leadership, creativity, knowledge, and contributions to student learning. Honorees are nominated by the deans of their respective schools and by The Teaching Center at WashU.

Prof. Jennings joined Olin in 2012 after graduating from the University of Washington. Before earning his PhD, he was an auditor at Deloitte. His research primarily focuses on information intermediaries, textual analysis, and financial reporting.

Previous Olin honorees include Staci Thomas, Durai Sundaramoorthi, Glenn MacDonald, and Marcia Armstrong.

#OlinKudos, Prof. Jennings!

Starting in the Spring, WashU undergraduate students will be able to take an exciting course combining entrepreneurship, cybersecurity, and national defense.

“Laboratory for Defense and Corporate Cybersecurity Innovation” is a joint entrepreneurial lab between WashU, Saint Louis University, CORTEX, and the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency, where students will solve real-world problems facing the Department of Defense and corporate America in the realm of cybersecurity.

The course is coordinated by Olin’s Academic Director for Entrepreneurship, Cliff Holekamp, and will be co-taught by Adam Timm, the Digital Transformation Chief at the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency.

“We are leveraging the world-class resources that we have right here in St. Louis with the NGA, CORTEX, and our strong corporate cybersecurity community,” says Cliff Holekamp, Senior Lecturer and Academic Director for Entrepreneurship. Classes will be held at CORTEX, and student-developed solutions could evolve into startups or be adopted by industry leaders. The course is open to all undergraduates at WashU.

Students will not only develop prototypes to address some of the most pressing cybersecurity challenges facing clients, but will also hone strategies for selling the concept to the Department of Defense and Fortune 500 companies.

“This course is the embodiment of the collaborative spirit that we have been developing in the St. Louis entrepreneurial community,” says Holekamp. “I have also been delighted by the continued spirit of collaboration between Olin and the School of Engineering, with whom we developed this course.”

Enrollment for MGT 460N – Laboratory for Defense and Corporate Cybersecurity Innovation is happening NOW! Sign up via WebSTAC to be part of the lab’s inaugural class in Spring 2018.

This Veteran’s Day, Olin reflects with gratitude on the service and leadership offered by its vibrant military veteran community. One needs to look no further than alumna and former U.S. Army Blackhawk pilot Katie Buehner as an example of the impact our student veterans have on the world.

Previously named one of Poets & Quants’ “Best and Brightest” and profiled by both The Denver Business Journal and The National Business Journal for her entrepreneurial pursuits, Katie is once again making headlines and continuing to make her alma mater proud.

Business Because recently profiled Katie for her work helping veterans launch new careers in business by offering training for careers in high-tech sales. Katie’s employer, Tech Qualled, aims to “change the way high-tech executives perceive the skill sets of military service members.” Katie says high-tech sales companies are particularly reluctant to hire employees without experience handling accounts.

“Even though veterans might not have the direct experience, they are driven, results-oriented and resilient—they have the potential to outlearn and outpace everyone else on their staff,” Katie told Business Because.

Tech Qualled has so far placed over 100 candidates, and now has 75 partners. Learn more about the Launchpad Academy for Veterans here.

Olin Kudos, Katie, and all of our Olin Veterans–you inspire and lead our community to achieve more.

Check out Katie’s full profile on Business Because.

One of the Skandlaris Center’s 2017 Global Impact Award winners is the brainchild of two Olin alumni. Data analytics platform Strayos was founded by CEO Ravi Sahu, EMBA ‘14, and CFO Greg Shapiro, EMBA ‘14, in 2016.

Strayos‘ proprietary 3D photogrammetry software eliminates the need for expensive laser scanners by automating mining and quarry site data collection. They use drone data to provide real-time 3D analytics, predicting efficient and accurate blast patterns while significantly decreasing delivery time and improving safety measures.

The second 2017 GIA winner, Genescopy, developed an RNA extraction method that enables a new wave of noninvasive diagnostic tests to prevent, detect, and treat gastrointestinal disease.

The Skandalaris Center’s GIA competition awards WashU, postdoctoral researchers, and recent alumni whose ventures are scalable, sustainable, and quick-to-market with proof of concept and a broad impact. Each of the winning teams receive $25,000 in equity-free funding.

Ravi told the Skandalaris Center that their award will support hiring plans, their global launch in Australia and Asia, and a collaboration with WashU’s Computer Science department “to build novel algorithms for big data image processing.”

Ravi Sahu, EMBA 2014, makes his elevator pitch during the event. Strayos was one of two companies to receive an award. Photo by Sid Hastings / WUSTL Photos

Head over to the Skandalaris website for a Q&A with Ravi and Greg about growing a startup, building strong teams, and more.

Poets & Quants Editor John Byrne recently visited Washington University to learn more about Olin’s program offerings, meet with students, and talk one-on-one with Dean Mark Taylor about the school’s upcoming “strategic refresh.”

According to Byrne’s just-published interview with Dean Taylor, the pair’s discussion covered a lot of ground: the potential for a one-year MBA, the future of online learning at Olin, taking leadership inspiration from Shakespeare’s Henry V, and Dean Taylor’s love of all things St. Louis (he tells Byrne that St. Louis “feels to me like one of the world’s great cities”).

Check out some of the highlights from the interview below, and stay up-to-date on Olin’s latest happenings by following Olin and Dean Taylor on Twitter.

Considering a one-year, accelerated full-time MBA program

“I think there is an opportunity for thinking about flexibility in the MBA program. The MBA has to shift in terms of what it offers. If you look at the trend of returns to MBAs, they have been declining while the costs have been increasing. People are thinking hard about the value proposition of a traditional MBA.

“One way of thinking about MBA candidates and students is as career accelerators and career changers. Some students know exactly what career they want to be in, and they are already in it. They really want to accelerate their career, get the human capital that an MBA imparts, perhaps increase their network of contacts, and do the MBA as fast as possible. Career changers would rather take a couple of years to perhaps do one or more internships and really ponder which way they want to take their career. We have to cater to both of those audiences here.”

Olin’s close-knit community 

“Olin Business School offers world-class instruction, faculty that is second to none in the world and who are very approachable. There is an intimacy in the classroom between faculty and students that would be hard to find elsewhere in top schools. Everyone who comes to Olin has a name and a story. You are well known by the faculty and supported by an excellent staff. That is one aspect of Olin that marks us out from our competitor schools.”

Olin’s first century in business

“We were one of the first business schools to be launched in the U.S. 100 years ago. We have grown from a small class of 20 or so to one of the great business schools in the world, with extensions in Mumbai and Shanghai as well as in Washington, D.C., through the Brookings Institution. We are a full-service school with a top-ranked undergraduate program, a leading MBA program, and a range of master’s programs, executive education, and a thriving doctoral program as well.”

Interdisciplinary influences on business education

“Literature really tells us a lot about human nature and the human condition. Thinking about those issues is a very important part of humanity and being an effective business leader. The performing arts are very important, particularly in a business school education. Being able to project, persuade, and get one’s views across is in one sense a part of drama.”

What Olin looks for in students 

“We are looking for individuals who are excellent and who want to pursue excellence. We are looking for people who have a strong values system and want to have a global outlook. Our vision is global and our thinking is entrepreneurial. The environment here is a very supportive one. I wouldn’t want to be up against any of our graduates in the marketplace, but I certainly would want to be one of their colleagues.”

Read the full interview on Poets & Quants.

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