Tag: Consortium

Dorothy Kittner, left, who also serves as interim director of the Olin career center, with Anna Gonzalez, WashU

Dorothy D. Kittner, WashU Olin’s senior associate dean of the Center for Experiential Learning, began a two-year term as the board chair for the Consortium for Graduate Study in Management on July 1.

The nonprofit organization, based in Chesterfield, Missouri, was founded in 1966 at WashU Olin and is dedicated to increasing business school enrollment by women and underrepresented minorities. Kittner’s appointment came about after she was nominated and elected by the Consortium board of trustees following a change in its governance design.

“I am so proud that WashU Olin Business School is one of the founding members of The Consortium. To be representing Olin in this regard is both humbling and exciting, as Olin has helped me get where I am today,” said Kittner, herself an Olin MBA alum from 1994. “This is another opportunity for me to further develop my leadership competencies.”

During a sabbatical in the early 1960s, Washington University business school Professor Sterling Schoen realized that no Black men served in leadership in any of the Fortune 500 companies at the time. The realization inspired him to assemble an academic conference that resulted in the idea for The Consortium, which launched with three schools—WashU, Indiana University and the University of Wisconsin.

Today, The Consortium’s membership includes 22 top-tier business schools across the country. It recruits students who have shown a “demonstrated commitment to diversity” into its program and collaborates with member schools to admit students to full-time MBA programs.

“As both an Olin MBA alumnae and member of the staff, being asked to be at the helm of The Consortium board of trustees allows me the opportunity to continue to shine a light on the excellent students, faculty and staff at Olin,” Kittner said.

Pictured above: Dorothy Kittner, left, who also serves as interim director of the Olin career center, with Anna Gonzalez, WashU’s vice chancellor for student affairs.

Dolapu Ojutiku, MBA ’21, writes today about his summer consulting experience at Liberty Mutual. He was invited to return to Liberty Mutual full-time after graduation. His contribution is part of a series by students sharing their summer internship experiences with the Olin blog.

My internship has been one of the highlights of my MBA experience so far. I spent my summer working at Liberty Mutual as a consultant in the corporate development program. I worked on a project that had real impact on the company. I did an assessment of one of our largest vendors to streamline processes and evaluate opportunities for improvements. One of my contributions that is being implemented is a scorecard that provides better insights into the performance of our vendors. It was an eventful summer and I’m pleased to be joining the company full time after graduation. 

My internship was originally intended to be in person but ended up being virtual due to work-from-home policies as a result of the coronavirus. I initially wasn’t sure what to expect, but the company did a great job of creating ways to engage with us and build community virtually. Some examples of this include a virtual town hall with the CEO to address racial injustice in the US, an executive speaker lunch series for the interns, and a virtual baking event with Joanne Chang (Boston’s Flour Bakery), a former management consultant turned chef.

Olin did a great job preparing me. I started working with my career coach at the time, Jeff Stockton, before I had even arrived on campus to start my program. I was able to participate in the Consortium Orientation Program in Houston last summer and had to get ready for recruiting much earlier than usual. The WCC team—as well as my academic advisor, Ashley Macrander—were also a good support system throughout my first year.

I found that a lot of the frameworks we learned during Seth Carnahan’s strategy class turned out to be valuable for my internship. Two other classes that really helped me succeed were “Negotiation,” by Hillary Anger Elfenbein, and “Power & Politics” by Peter Boumgarden. Lessons from those classes came in handy when negotiating with cross-functional teams and influencing people to buy-in to my project.

My advice for students about the interview process is to try to network as much as possible, since you never know who might end up being your advocate in discussions that you’re not part of. I also found value in starting case prep very early on; I attended the Management Consulted workshop as well as some of the OSCA case sessions and found them to be very helpful in supplementing my case prep. In my personal experience, preparing well for the consulting case interview made other interviews easier.

In hindsight, I realize that a lot of the pillars we value at Olin helped prepare me for my internship. I had to be entrepreneurial and take ownership for the direction and outcome of my project. I also needed to make sure that decisions I made were supported by data, but not without considering the effect it had on our customers and the values they’ve come to expect from the company.

Photo, above. From left to right: Ony Mgbeahurike, Janell Cleare, Jose Reynoso, Jennifer Franklin, Ricardo Marrujo Mexia, Ashia Powers, Oscar Vasco, Gbenoba Idah, Gheremey Edwards and Bryant Powell.

The violent clashes between white supremacist groups and counter-protesters last weekend on the University of Virginia campus prompted members of Olin’s incoming MBA Class of 2019 to create a video of solidarity and support for their fellow students at U.VA’s Darden School of Business in Charlottesville.

The students who appear in the video are members of Olin’s Consortium cohort and scholarship recipients through the Consortium for Graduate Studies in Management (CGSM). CGSM was founded in 1966 by Olin Business School’s Prof. Sterling Schoen. Today, the CGSM is the premier national organization involved in promoting and helping gain access to graduate business education for historically underrepresented minorities. Through business school and corporate partnerships, the Consortium provides scholarships, mentoring, networking, internships, and career placement advice to each class of MBA fellows. 18 world class universities admit 400 CGSM students annually to MBA programs. Since its founding, CGSM schools have graduated more than 8,000 leaders to the benefit of businesses and communities around the world.

Patricia Schoen passed away on Sunday, Feb. 26. She earned her MBA in 1951 from Washington University and was for many years a marketing instructor in the business school. She married a colleague at the business school, Sterling Schoen, a professor of organizational behavior, who founded the Consortium for Graduate Study in Management in 1966. Mrs. Schoen “was a stalwart supporter of The Consortium since its inception and served as something of our matriarch through the years,” according to an announcement from the Consortium.

Olin Dean Emeritus Bob Virgil and former Dean Mahendra Gupta will deliver eulogies at funeral services for Mrs. Schoen on Friday, March 10. See details below.

Pat Schoen

Pat Schoen

“Mrs. Schoen would typically understate her contribution to The Consortium, but we felt her influence and her support every day,” said Peter J. Aranda III, (Olin MBA’87), CEO and executive director of The Consortium.

For many years, Mrs. Schoen attended the Consortium’s annual Orientation Program & Career Forum  (OP), where she would greet incoming students. In June 2016, she took part in the Consortium’s 50th Orientation Program held in St. Louis.

“She was usually the most popular person at OP,” Aranda said, noting that students at last year’s OP lined up for the chance to greet and thank her during the founders’ reception and 50th anniversary gala.

Mrs. Schoen was a committed financial supporter of The Consortium and was the first individual donor to provide support to the undergraduate program that is in the planning stages.

Mrs. Schoen died peacefully surrounded by her family in St. Louis. Daughter Jennifer Jeffrey, and her family, and son Chris Schoen were able to say their goodbyes. Sterling Schoen died in 1999. Mrs. Schoen would have been 90 in October.

Arrangements are as follows:

Thursday, March 9
3-5  p.m.: Visitation opens again from 6-8 p.m.
Bopp Chapel
10610 Manchester Road
Kirkwood, MO 63122-1308

Funeral Services
Friday, March 10
11 a.m.
Ladue Chapel
9450 Clayton Rd
St. Louis, Missouri 63124

Burial and Memorial Service
Saturday, March 11
Family Burial Plot in Lufkin, Texas

Pictured above: Pat Schoen with Peter Aranda and her daughter Jennie Jeffrey at the 2016 Orientation Program in St. Louis. Photo by Brian Treffeisen.

Alejandro Bolívar-Cervoni has dreamed of going to business school since he was a young boy growing up in Puerto Rico. His family settled there after fleeing Cuba in 1960. His uncle Roberto had gone to business school in the U.S. and told his nephew about the transformational MBA experience that introduced him to business theory, best practices, and most of all, a diverse group of peers, professors, and corporate leaders. Alejandro’s uncle also told him about the Consortium for Graduate Studies in Management, which provided the scholarship that allowed him to go to business school. Today, Alejandro is a first-year MBA student at Olin and a second generation Consortium Fellow and scholarship recipient.

The Consortium organization was founded at Olin in 1966 and dedicated to increasing the ranks of underrepresented minorities in business education and corporate leadership.  Alejandro is one of five students that the Consortium is following and featuring on its blog this year as they begin their MBA journey.

Olin Consortium Fellows, MBA Class of 2018

Olin Consortium Fellows, MBA Class of 2018

Alejandro tells why he was motivated to pursue an MBA degree:

“I sought out deeper understanding of other cultures by working with international classmates. Taking advantage of travel opportunities—including spending a semester abroad—will also introduce me to best practices when working with diverse, multicultural teams.”  

Hear Alejandro talk about his first few months at Olin in our video. The Consortium has also featured him in another story on their site that shares his many ties to the Consortium through relatives who have been past fellows in the program.

Related: 1966: The Consortium takes first steps to diversify MBA ranks