Young Executives of Color Ethics & Business 101 Session

Wednesday, January 5th, 2011

YEOC Blog #2

Cheers to another amazing YEOC session!

Thank you to our Young Executives for giving up a sleep filled Saturday and joining us yet again for our November 20th  session. Our guests from E&Y and BEDC Fellow/YEOC mentor, Sabrina, offered engaging insights into the world of ethics. We hope that next time you are caught in an ethical dilemma, you will think back to Sabrina’s valuable photocopy video and do the right thing :)

The breakout team activity (Drawbridge Activity) taught us that ethics are situational and differ from person to person. This is an important fact to remember in all facets of life. Ethical behavior in the workplace can be defined by a different set of rules than in other areas of your life, so constantly be aware of your environment and the behavioral standards you are being held accountable for.

Our November session also provided Young Executives with a wealth of knowledge concerning their education. We hope students gained valuable insight to reference as they plan for their futures. (YEOC Seniors, please utilize the information and guidance provided during your workshop as you work through your college applications. Remember that the UW application deadline is Wednesday, December 15, 2010. Reach out to your mentors with any questions or need for clarification. We are here to serve you! Another important thing to note as you are completing your college applications (specifically for UW) is that you should select Business Administration as your major of choice.)

Our next session focused on Marketing  is just around the corner and we are very excited to see our Young Executives bright and early on December 11th.

Alexandria Hunter, Senior
International Business & Finance
BEDC Fellow

2010-2011 Young Executives of Color

Wednesday, January 5th, 2011




October Teambuilding Session

October Teambuilding Session

 Let’s Get it Started!!!

Congratulations 2010-2011 Young Executives of Color students!  Session one got us all off to an amazing start on October 16th  that was coupled greatly with the double overtime Husky Football Homecoming victory. 

Major kudos  to all of the Young Executives for showing such fantastic enthusiasm throughout the entire session, despite our insanely early start on a Saturday morning.  All of the mentors were extremely excited to get settled into our individual groups and spend time getting to know their mentees.  The creative spirit was clearly alive and well throughout the entire day. The freshness these high school students showed during our first team competition, the photo scavenger hunt, proved to be immensely entertaining.  It was exciting to see the originality each team displayed in capturing each photo’s theme assignment. 

Our next session is not until November 20th but the BEDC fellows will be keeping in regular contact with Young Executives - this is what makes the YEOC program such a unique program.  Good luck to our YEOC Seniors on your upcoming exams, SAT/PSAT, big games, etc.  Work hard, believe in yourself, and have fun!  See you next month!

‘One can never consent to creep when one feels the compulsion to soar’. Helen Keller

Alexandria Hunter, Senior
International Business & Finance
BEDC Fellow


BOLD Talent Networking Forum @ Museum of Flight

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010
Museum of Flight
UW undergraduates representing the Foster School
UW undergraduates representing the Foster School
Foster students engage with Gwen Houston, GM Global Diversity & Inclusion, US HR Diversity
Foster students engage with Gwen Houston, Microsoft GM Global Diversity & Inclusion, US HR Diversity

I was fortunate enough to attend the BOLD Talent Networking Forum along with over 50 undegraduates representing the UW Foster School of Business on Monday, March 1 at the Museum of Flight.  This experience was educational, enriching, and a rare opportunity to network with high level executives.  The panel that was featured for dialogue and questions included CEO’s from Seattle’s top companies such as Puget Sound Energy, JP Morgan Chase, Alaska Airlines, Retail Lockbox Inc., and of course, Microsoft.  I was amazed and surprised at the CEO’s willingness to speak candidly with us on what they are looking for in an employee.  Words that were thrown out there include initiative-oriented, persistent, driven, strong work-ethic, and a willingness to learn and grow every day.  Along with these attributes, they each expressed how their companies are continually seeking diverse backgrounds of diverse cultures to come and work for them.  This was a true testament to me on how much companies nowadays are fervently seeking minorities with diverse upbringings to come in and offer new and fresh perspectives.  It was a great thing to see and hear for my own eyes and ears and it came directly from the leaders of these fortune 500 companies. 

The next portion of the night was dedicated to Small Group Networking where we were able to sit in a more intimate group with top level HR managers, recruiters, and other executives and have a discussion about the best ways we can advance ourselves along with the next steps we might be able to take in regards to an internship or job opportunity.  These managers were so helpful in identifying the keys to success in the application, interview, and follow-up process.   A story from one of the HR managers from Alaska resonated with me.  She explained how she started at Alaska in the call center and everyday she would ask to learn something new.  Finally, she had learned everything possible within that department and upper management took notice and sent her to corporate where she assumed a supervisor role in the company.  Ever since, she’s been moving her way up and now is a senior director.  Stories like this are inspiring and give me a great perspective on what makes a successful employee. 

Overall, this event was a huge success for me and I was able to put my face and name in the front of very important decision makers in their respective companies.  I would definitely encourage students next year to keep an eye out and to take advantage of this wonderful opportunity. 

Special Thanks to:

BOLD Member Companies
Alaska Airlines & Horizon Air, Boeing, Costco, Eddie Bauer, Group Health Cooperative, JP Morgan
Chase, Liberty Mutual/Safeco, Microsoft, Puget Sound Energy, REI, Retail Lockbox, Russell
Investment Group, Starbucks, The Seattle Foundation, U.S. Bank, Wells Fargo, Weyerhaeuser

BOLD Talent Partners
Act Six / Northwest Leadership Foundation, College Success Foundation, Rainier Scholars, University
of Puget Sound, UW Foster School of Business Business Economic Development Center (BEDC), UW Foster School of Business Undergraduate Diversity Services

-Vance Roush
Junior, Marketing & Information Systems

Out in the Workplace!

Monday, February 1st, 2010

Out in the workplace Panel @ ECC Do Seattle companies measure up to the city’s liberal reputation? Last Tuesday night, the Ethnic Cultural Center hosted a panel on the queer (or not) friendly environments of several Puget Sound workplaces, not excluding the University of Washington. Other organizations included Amazon, Adobe, Tacoma School District, and Pacific Medical Centers. Panelists D.A. Clements, Nan Leiter, Jill Seidenstein, David Sumerlin, and Thomas Yetman contributed their perspectives. 

What was the verdict? Turns out our corporations, for the most part, do live up to the cities gay-friendly image with domestic partner benefits, non-discrimination policies, and open-minded employees. Highlights: 

1. Before seeking employment, did you research the company culture to specifically understand their stand on sexual orientation? If so, what resources did you use to research?

 a. Numerous panelists utilized hrc.org, the website for the Human Rights Campaign, a gay and transgender civil rights organization that promotes equal rights in the workplace and community.

2. How do you navigate cultural differences when they arise in the workplace? And by cultural differences I mean the different life experiences held as queer versus straight?

Jill: Not an issue at Amazon. The real problem arises within the queer community itself. There is a lot of misguided animosity and impatience within our environment towards the straight community.

Nan: I’ve had to suppress aspects of myself to conform to the “norm” image. However, people will listen to you more if you’re professional rather than radical.

3. Have you experienced harassment at the workplace?

Nan: Not outright harassment. Rather, I find I don’t have that automatic trust from those other teachers who come from the “straight with kids” lifestyle.

David: I have in past positions, yes. But I find that it also helps to diffuse harassment if you’re out and proud.

A common theme permeated the night: respect. My favorite quote from the evening was “Being out is a manifestation of respect for yourself and your interactions with others.” The panelists made the point that “living out is a political statement.” What statement will we make at Foster? In our futures? Our generation, generation y, is pegged as one that embraces diversity—we were a driving force behind the election of America’s first African American president. Let’s continue to live up to that image, both at Foster and in our future careers, in promoting the rights of all our diverse peers.

-Elizabeth Comley (Senior, Marketing & International Business)

Marketing makes the world go round – YEOC Marketing Session

Tuesday, January 26th, 2010

Marketing makes the world go round—well, at least the business world. And marketing just so happened to be the focus for December’s Young Executives of Color program. As one of my focuses at the Foster School, I was especially excited to lead this month’s session. Marketing is an incredibly dynamic subject, encompassing nearly all of a company’s strategic decisions making it incredibly difficult to decide what to include in an hour long introduction to the topic. The final product touched upon the basics—4P’s, target markets, mission statements—then moved on to the more specific areas of brand management and advertising. Students were also able to take a peek into the research of Brian Wansink and Robert Cialdini, prominent academics in the marketing world.

Peter Doubleday, a partner at Ernst & Young, as well as his colleague Bob Hilton, graciously made a visit to the YEOC group again leading an analysis on the visual identity of their company. With them were fellow Ernst & Young’ers Debbie Shih, Valerie Burris, and Kiyosha Baird who spoke about the importance of personal branding and networking. Although students should always be true to their personalities, they learned that certain elements could be emphasized depending on the situation—professional, social, academic. You wouldn’t joke around the same way with your boss as you do with your friends, would you?

Building on the earlier marketing lecture, students were able to employ what they learned about advertising in order to construct a commercial for future YEOC recruiting efforts. In true competitive spirit, teams had only 20 minutes to design a one minute video that would be used to attract new YEOC applicants. Musical numbers, classroom reproductions, and program value-adds all made appearances.

The college admission process again took the lead as our college prep topic. Seniors completed a workshop on writing personal statements with Jennifer Shoen. While Pamela Lacson and Jessica Rush led sophomores and juniors on the elements of analyzing and admitting college applicants – the roles were reversed and students decided who got admitted or denied into a mock university through an admissions case study.

Until January, wishing everyone a wonderful and restful holiday from the YEOC group!
-Elizabeth Comley, YEOC December Session Leader (Senior, Marketing & International Business)

YEOC – Ethics

Monday, November 30th, 2009
Femme Fatale Plus Deux on the steps of the Quad.

Femme Fatale Plus Deux on the steps of the Quad.

On November 7th, the Young Executives of Color Program (YEOC) held its second session of the 2009-2010 school year. November’s theme was Ethics and with the support  of Ernst & Young, Jilberto Soto—a YEOC mentor—led an amazing day. After introducing students to the six pillars of ethics and sample frameworks, Jilberto started off the morning by asking students to create their own ethical mission statements. Creating statements allowed students to process the information as well as evaluate their own moral priorities. They then broke out into college prep groups for focus topics on UW admissions, planning for college, and academic success strategies.

Ernst & Young took center stage in the afternoon with presentations on resume building, negotiations, and ethics in the workplace. Students paired up and put their negotiation skills to the test – assuming the roles of a buyer and car salesperson. Teams were required to compromise on key issues with the ultimate goal of enlarging the pie for everyone involved. Some sellers drove a hard bargain though and buyers are still bitter today……. Ultimately the negotiation was a fun learning experience for students, showing them the importance of fair dealing and lifetime customers—if a seller wanted repeat sales—versus short term profits. How amazing is it that high school students can gain first hand experience with key business terms such as “distributive barganing” and “logrolling”?

The session concluded with announcement of team Femme Fatale Plus Deux as winners of October’s photographic scavenger hunt competition. Cleary the group to beat!

 A big thanks to Jilberto our project lead for the session!!

 Thanks also to EY contributors: Yhoni Keleta, Annie Graebner, and Robiel Isaac! 

And our college prep presenters: Jennifer Rance, Toka Valu, and Pam Lacson :D

Cowardice asks the question, ‘Is it safe?’ Expediency asks the question, ‘Is is politic?’ Vanity asks the question, ‘Is it popular?’ But, conscience asks the question, ‘Is it right?’ And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular but one must take it because one’s conscience tells one that it is right.

–Martin Luther King Jr.

Annual Undergraduate Diversity Services Autumn Quarter Kick-Off Karoake & Games Night 10/22

Friday, November 13th, 2009

Hey: what can i say? I’m a sucker for karaoke.

I can’t sing to save my life, but the Annual Undergraduate Diversity Services Autumn Quarter Kick-Off Karoake & Games Night was all fun.
-oh and more than that:
…there was free food!

Prospective and Current Foster students belt out R & B Hits

Prospective and Current Foster students belt out R & B Hits

-but more than that too:
…there were internship opportunities and academic advancement all over the place!

From PWC Pricewaterhousecoopers [we had a celebrity in the house; current Foster Student, Matt Herring who was on the back of the PWC magazine talked to us! lol] and other organizations were on-hand to meet with students  personally like INROADS, and then Foster student organizations on campus, like the Association of Black Business Students, Hispanic Business Student Assocation and other organizations as well as specific academic programs interested in working directly with students of color. My favorite was learning about getting a Certificate of International Studies in Business (CISB) to attach to my Business Administration Degree and incorporating study abroad. I also learned about Case Competitions for Foster school locally and nationally – we got the FRESH-men-FOUR going into our first one next weekend, so that will be something to look forward to in future posts!

-Jordan Dacres (Pre-Business, Freshman)

CISB Program Hosts International Business Career Panel

Wednesday, October 28th, 2009

Last Thursday the CISB program (Certificate of International Studies in Business) hosted an international business career panel featuring four exciting individuals from across the global career spectrum. Panelists discussed their professional backgrounds and international experience as well as provided valuable advice to participants.

Susana Murillo, VP and Country Manager for Latin America, Canada, Spain and Portugal, US Bank
Susana provided a wealth of advice for students. First and foremost–follow your passion! Even if you can’t achieve your dream job right away, invest the time to learn as much as you can. Susana suggests conducting informational interviews to discover how people sitting in your ideal career got to where they are. Also, be persistent. You can be turned away from a hundred jobs, but it only takes one offer to get you on your way.  Concerning international business, she says it is much more than travel. Globalization is about experiencing new people, cultures, and business. Business has the power to do good things—Susana originally was interested in the Peace Corps.

Eric Hsu, Commercial Officer, U.S. Department of Commerce
Eric brought a unique set of experiences to the panel as the only member from the public sector. After a start in the banking industry, he made a move into the Department of Commerce as a Foreign Commercial officer. He has lived all over Asia including Shanghai, Kuala Lumpur, and New Delhi. He illuminated the fact that despite popular thought, the government actually provides ample overseas opportunities. Most of these are available as a Foreign Service Officer for the USDA, State Department, or Commerce Department.  His other guidance included having a focus but remaining flexible. You might not be able to get from point A to B in one step, but be patient and adaptable. If you take the time to develop a skill-set, opportunities will come to you.

Coletta Vigh, MBA student
Coletta is one of our very own Husky alumna and Foster MBA candidates. After graduating from the UW with a degree in Japanese language and literature, she moved to Japan for two years to cement her language skills. She says foreign language can be key to gaining access to certain industries—she was able to land a technology related position with no tech experience! It also provides you visibility with people that not might not otherwise be possible and can lead to expedited promotions.
How can an upcoming graduate handle this tough economy? Volunteer! Volunteer positions can open doors….Colletta was offered a position based on her work with a salmon fishery.

Stephen Svinth, CISB Chinese track alumnus, New Product Buyer, Fire Mountain Gems
Carpe diem! Stephen found his first job by calling up a company he saw on a box at Home Depot. He then landed his current position by chatting with the company CEO on an airplane—now that’s networking. For whatever position you end up in, Stephen recommends being analytic and able to build a strong argument.

-Elizabeth Comley (Senior, Marketing & International Business)

CISB PanelistCISB Students Engaged in LectureCISB Panelists

NABA West Coast Conference ’09

Friday, October 23rd, 2009
UW Students at NABA Conference (Members - Association of Black Business Students)

UW Students at NABA Conference (Members - Association of Black Business Students)

Young Executives of Color Orientation
Young Executives of Color Orientation: YEOC Alumni Student Panel (Current UW Students)

In all seriousness on this one though; this has to be one of my greatest networking events that I’ve been to so far this year. It’s only been a couple of weeks into my freshmen year at the UW and before I know it, I am off on an all-expense paid trip to San Francisco for the National Association of Black Accountants (NABA) Student Conference. I got this opportunity because I made a good enough impression on Ernst & Young exec’s during the YEOC alumni student panel at the September Young Executives of Color Orientation.

During the NABA Conference, I learned SOOOOO many things about myself and the others around me in just three days. The one thing that sticks out and I can’t get rid of: “You’re always on.” From the moment you walk in, someone is watching you. So you always have to mind your p’s and q’s –  from how you act, to what you’re wearing and your appearance. This is all taken into account.  I interviewed with a lot of people and met other students who were in the same place as me [4 freshmen out of roughly 100 college students]. I learned from others who have already been in my shoes and received great advice. I loved talking to people who were already in the workplace, ready to impart tons of knowledge on to young students like myself. Overall, it’s an experience I won’t forget.

-Jordan Dacres, YEOC Alumnus (Freshman, Pre-Business)

Welcome to the undergrad blog

Friday, September 4th, 2009

The Foster School of Business Undergraduate Program Office and our undergraduate students will blog about Foster Events, student experiences, student leadership opportunities, and much more.

Blog contributors are all UW Foster School of Business (Seattle campus) Undergraduate Program staff:

  • Jai Elliott, Associate Director Diversity & Recruitment,  Undergraduate Programs
  • Jennifer Kitchen, Coordinator of Student Development , Undergraduate Programs
  • Pamela Lacson, Program Manager, Undergraduate Diversity Services

Get a taste of undergrad life and business school. Find out if it’s the right major for you. Enjoy the blog.