Page 1

Winter 2016

BUSINESS Applying an EMBA Education in the Real World Villanova’s Executive MBA produces four members of Aqua America’s senior leadership team.


Kim Cahill selected for 2015–2016 Fulbright U.S. Scholar Grant.


When it comes to cryptocurrency, keep your enemies close.


Wen Mao, PhD: Interim Vice Dean of the Villanova School of Business.

2 Villanova Business magazine is published semiannually for alumni and friends of the Villanova School of Business. It is available in a print edition and online at


Daniel Wright, PhD






Features 2 COVER STORY Villanova EMBA Produces Four Members of Aqua America’s Senior Leadership Team

8 FACULTY AND STAFF ACHIEVEMENTS Jonathan Doh and Kim Cahill Recognized

Claire Asmussen ’16 VSB Jeanette Ding ’16 VSB Nicole DiPaolo ’18 VSB Mackenzie Evans ’17 VSB Lizandra Fiske ’16 VSB Lauren Higgins Madison Meyer ’18 VSB Thomas D. Rodriguez ’16 VSB Jonathan M. Mantovani ’16 CLAS Vidhi Shah ’15 VSB Brad Warmhold DESIGN AND PRODUCTION

Matthew Schmidt Design


20 STUDENT SPOTLIGHT Villanova Student Launches Fashion Company from Dorm Room


Send comments and questions to: VSBCommunicationsandMarketing Villanova Business 800 Lancaster Avenue Villanova, PA 19085-1678 610-519-5424

Interim Vice Dean, Wen Mao, PhD

24 ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT Therese DeVries Narzikul is Dedicated to Enhancing Patient Care

Cover Photo (from left to right) Aqua America’s senior leadership team: Rick Fox, Brian Dingerdissen, Kim Joyce, Christopher Franklin



am honored to serve as the Interim Dean of the Villanova School of Business, and continue all the great work that has been accomplished over the past few years.

I invite you to read about the exceptional student experience we provide for our undergraduate and graduate learners. We have a relentless focus on the student experience, including an embedded professional development curriculum, world-class teacher-scholars educating an engaged student body, active and supportive alumni who advocate for our students, and extraordinary student services. Our student experience and curriculum turn great students into exceptional ones, and these exceptional students become leaders—both here at Villanova and in the business world. Warm regards,

Daniel Wright, PhD Interim Dean Villanova School of Business

What do four members of Aqua America, Inc.’s senior leadership team have in common? They all have a Villanova Executive MBA—and it’s not by chance.


Villanova Executive MBA produces four members of

Aqua America’s

senior leadership team As President and CEO Christopher Franklin ’02 EMBA explained, “One of the most important decisions a CEO can make is hiring the right people around him.” This led Franklin to seek out leaders who embodied the same values that are fostered in the Villanova EMBA program—integrity, a tireless work ethic and teamwork.

IT ALL STARTED WHEN in 2000, Franklin joined the first-ever EMBA class at Villanova. The main reasons he decided to enroll were Villanova’s reputation for academic rigor, its unmatched facilities and the values of the school. A 1987 graduate of West Chester University, he said, “Having been out of school for some time, it was refreshing to be back in the stream of learning and current thought, and it was transformational to be able to immediately apply my knowledge at work the very next day.” But perhaps the biggest benefits of the program were the social activities and networking opportunities—it was through this EMBA program that he met fellow student Rick Fox ’02 EMBA. Fox, now EVP and COO of Aqua America, enrolled in the same EMBA class when he and his family moved to Philadelphia in 2000. He worked in the chemical manufacturing industry for 17 years and wanted to become better connected in his new city with the hopes of changing careers. He liked that the newly-offered EMBA program was “like a startup” at the time and he points to the EMBA program for giving him the confidence to branch out into other industries. He and Franklin quickly became friends and, upon graduation, Franklin offered him a job as the vice president of customer operations. Reflecting on his time in the program, Fox said, “It was like a two-year interview with Chris.”



Applying an EMBA Education in the Real World Over the years, Franklin and Fox relied on their EMBA experience to think differently about their business at Aqua America, the second largest U.S.-based publicly traded water and wastewater utility company, serving nearly three million people across eight states. Their newly acquired business education encouraged them to look at their business in an innovative way—to focus on metrics and measurement as well as their mission.

As a senior leadership team, Franklin and Fox felt it was important to expose others at Aqua America to the Villanova EMBA experience. They selected Kim Joyce and Brian Dingerdissen, who were both familiar with Villanova from their undergraduate days, to apply for the program. Joyce ’96 CLAS, ’11 EMBA, who serves as regulatory counsel and director of public and legislative affairs, expressed interest in taking an accounting class to refresh her core business skills. But the senior management team had bigger plans for her and thought she would be an excellent candidate for the EMBA program. Joyce said, “I love to learn and there was a comfort level in going back to Villanova. The EMBA cohort is such an intimate and impressive group and I learned just as much from my classmates as I did from the faculty.” As part of her capstone project, Joyce traveled to Nicaragua to evaluate water resources in rural communities—an experience that would prepare her well for her future role at Aqua America. Joyce currently oversees communications, community relations and the company’s charitable trust in addition to leading a team with responsibilities for all regulatory and legislative policy at the federal and state levels. Joyce reflected on her experience in Nicaragua as invaluable and rewarding; she feels similarly rewarded by the water service Aqua America provides every day and by serving on the board of the Economy League of Greater Philadelphia.


Villanova Business / Winter 2016

Dingerdissen ’05 VSB, ’13 EMBA was recently appointed chief of staff for Franklin. Dingerdissen maintains a personal connection with each department across the company and ensures that the company’s vision and core values—including an increased emphasis on people—are fully integrated throughout the organization. Dingerdissen seemed destined to complete the Villanova EMBA program due to his long history with Villanova. The late Rev. Joseph A. Burns, OSA, a professor of theology and education, was his great uncle and Tim Monahan, PhD, Dean Emeritus, the John M. Cooney Professor of Accounting and Information Systems and former VSB Dean, was Dingerdissen’s neighbor while he was growing up. After graduating with a degree in finance in 2005, he applied for a job at Aqua America with the help of Michael Pagano, PhD, The Robert J. and Mary Ellen Darretta Endowed Chair in Finance. “Brian has been a trusted advisor to my team for nearly a decade,” explained Franklin. “His counsel has played an important role in many of the decisions we’ve made which made him the perfect candidate for the EMBA program.” “My favorite part of the EMBA experience is the systemsthinking approach that encourages leaders to think broadly and strategically—outside their individual specialty or role,” said Dingerdissen. “It allowed me to get a high-level, broad base of skills that I brought back to work every day and will continue to use as I advance throughout my career.” Dingerdissen enjoyed his EMBA experience so much that he currently serves on the board of directors of the Villanova Executive MBA Alumni Association.

“There is no margin for error at Aqua America. Twenty-four hours a day, we have a tremendous responsibility to provide a basic need that people put into their bodies. So, we needed to hire and elevate our employees who are devoted to our core mission.” – Christopher Franklin ’02 EMBA


“I love to learn and there was a comfort level in going back to Villanova.” — KIM JOYCE ’96 CLAS, ’11 EMBA


Making a Difference Another thread that ties these four together is that each gives back to the community. Franklin explained, “Each of us took away a strong sense of service from our time at Villanova because it is so deeply ingrained in the coursework and the community. At Aqua America, we endeavor to match our management team with a civic association or community group for board service so we can help make a difference in the areas where we do business.” He noted that they encourage each of the 1,700 employees at Aqua America to share in the company’s values and make an impact. Fox put it best when he said, “I spent most of my career at a large chemical company and never knew if what I did made a difference. At Aqua America, I can see the difference I make each day and I applaud Chris for supporting each of us as we aim for this goal.” Aqua America has another employee in the program now, Mitchell Arch ’17 EMBA, and Franklin hopes to identify even more employees for the life-changing experience. Aqua America employs more than 25 Villanovans and looks to Villanova to recruit because Franklin knows he will find graduates who are ready and willing to work toward their mission. “It is very rewarding to see former EMBA students like Chris, Rick, Kim and Brian develop both professionally and personally into such outstanding people,” said Dr. Pagano. “At VSB, we are all very proud of what Chris and his team are doing now and will do in the future.”

“My favorite part of the EMBA experience is the systems-thinking approach that encourages leaders to think broadly and strategically—outside their individual specialty or role.” – Brian Dingerdissen ’05 VSB, ’13 EMBA



Jonathan Doh Recognized for Sustainability Management Curriculum

Kim Cahill Awarded Fulbright U.S. Scholar Grant

Jonathan Doh, PhD, Herbert G. Rammrath Endowed Chair in International Business, Faculty Director, Center for Global Leadership and Professor, Management and Operations was awarded University of South Carolina’s Darla Moore School of Business 2014 Dr. Alfred N. and Lynn Manos Page Prize for Sustainability Issues in Business Curricula. This annual, international prize recognizes the efforts made to introduce sustainability courses into the curriculum of business schools.

Kim Cahill, VSB’s director of the Center for Global Leadership, was selected to receive a 2015–16 Fulbright U.S. Scholar Grant and participate in the 2015 Fulbright Seminar for U.S. Administrators in International Education in Germany in October.

Dr. Doh received the award for developing his Strategies for Sustainability course at VSB. In designing the course, Dr. Doh leveraged his own professional experiences, VSB and Villanova University resources, and drew upon expertise in the sustainability practitioner community. The multi-disciplinary course integrates perspectives from climate science, public policy, engineering, finance, management, international business, marketing and others. Given Dr. Doh’s background as the faculty director of the Center for Global Leadership, the course takes an international focus, incorporating principles of global management, international relations and global governance. He employs several original cases and simulations in this hands-on course that involves students engaging with the academic literature but also directly with practitioners to undertake their analysis. Enrollment for the course includes students from all business majors, along with students from environmental science, biology, and other arts and sciences majors.


Villanova Business / Winter 2016

This grant allowed Cahill to serve as an educational ambassador and increase VSB’s engagement with Germany’s academic partnerships and international internship opportunities. Her experience will strengthen VSB’s Center for Global Leadership, which promotes cross-cultural awareness, ethical international business relationships and responsible global leadership. “I am thrilled and honored to have been chosen for the Fulbright program,” said Cahill. “Providing transformative experiences for students and educators through international education has always been my mission. Participating in the Fulbright program has enhanced my professional effectiveness and my observation of the German higher education system, culture and society has enriched my global competencies in order to better serve Villanova’s students and stakeholders.”


VSB Undergrad Receives

ULI Real Estate Scholarship The Urban Land Institute, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing leadership in the responsible use of land and in creating and sustaining thriving communities, announced in May that Alexandra Zeuli ’16 VSB had been named as the undergraduate recipient of the 2015 ULI Future Leaders Scholarship.  Created by ULI Philadelphia’s Young Leaders Group, the scholarship is awarded annually to a graduate student ($4,000) and an undergraduate student ($2,500) who demonstrate excellence in a ULI-related field of academic study.

Alexandra is a Finance and Real Estate major interested in pursuing a career in commercial real estate brokerage with a focus on sustainable development and responsible land use.

Winner of Adam Smith Research Paper Contest Economics and Finance major Christopher Tamanini ’15 VSB won first place for his research paper in the Adam Smith Contest. The annual VSB contest is sponsored by John Haines ’79 CLAS. The contest encourages students or recent graduates to submit research papers on a topic they would like to explore. Finalists were asked to present their papers and were scored on written content and oral presentation. Tamanini won first place for his paper titled “Game Theory and Traffic Congestion: An Economic Analysis.” Tamanini said, “The extraordinary faculty at VSB has created an atmosphere where students are encouraged to ask complex questions about the world around them.”


VSB’s Center for Church Management and Business Ethics partners with the

Pontifical Lateran University in Rome & Archdiocese of NY

In April 2015 the Center for Church Management and Business Ethics (CCMBE) at VSB partnered with the Pontifical Lateran University (PUL) in Rome to collaborate during the second year of PUL’s International School of Pastoral Management. The CCMBE will provide online and in-person education alongside professors from the PUL to students from around the world. “We are delighted to work with the Pontifical Lateran University,” says Charles Zech, PhD, Professor, Economics and Faculty Director for the CCMBE. “We are dedicated to providing the best possible church management education and research to help lead and serve the Church effectively. This partnership means not only that we will have a connection with the Vatican, but it also gives us the opportunity to share our expertise and work to build a stronger universal Church.” The PUL recently developed the School of Pastoral Management in response to Pope Francis’ desire to overhaul Church finances, and a desire for Church leaders to be better-trained to respond to the economic needs of the Church.

Villanova University Provost Patrick G. Maggitti, PhD, met with His Eminence, Timothy Cardinal Dolan, Archbishop of New York, to sign CCMBE’s partnership with ADNY.


Villanova Business / Winter 2016


VSB Makes Bloomberg Certification an Undergraduate Requirement In Fall 2014, VSB began requiring all of its freshmen business students to take a self-directed online course that will allow them to get Bloomberg-certified. The certification, which takes about six to eight hours to complete, will allow students to easily navigate the Bloomberg Terminal and access its wealth of financial and market data. Charles Zech, PhD and S.E. Monsignor Enrico Dal Covolo sign the partnership in Rome.

“We are very glad about this new collaboration with Villanova University’s Center for Church Management and Business Ethics because it is a well-respected international academic program that has been conducting research and education on issues related to pastoral management for the past ten years,” says Giulio Carpi, director of the School of Pastoral Management at the Pontifical Lateran University. The first cohort of students from the PUL began their 15-week program in February, and Dr. Zech addressed students in May in Rome. These students will attend a week-long residency at Villanova in April 2016. Faculty from Villanova’s CCMBE will teach three modules to the second cohort of PUL students beginning in February 2016 both online and in Rome and those students will attend a summer session on the Villanova campus in August 2016. In March, the CCMBE also entered into a partnership with the Archdiocese of New York (ADNY) to offer the Master of Science in Church Management program to lay people and clergy within the Archdiocese in support of its “Making All Things New” initiative, a strategic parish-planning program that aims to improve parishes to better serve the faithful. ADNY will matriculate up to 50 parishioners into the MSCM program annually for the duration of two years. The Center publishes cutting edge research on current church management issues offers several non-credit programs in church management including a webinar certificate series, customizable programs for seminarians, on-site diocesan training for clergy and lay staff, and conferences at Villanova on current church management topics.


Other leading undergraduate business programs have Bloomberg Terminals; however, certification is not required and students generally have access to just a handful of workstations. VSB’s Applied Finance Lab offers students the same equipment and resources available to Wall Street traders and recently underwent renovations to increase its capacity. It now holds 24 student workstations and 22 Bloomberg Terminals. David Shaffer, PhD, an associate professor and chair of the department of Finance at VSB, believes that this ambitious program will help to take away the “fear and intimidation factor” that comes with using the software. VSB first opened its Applied Finance Lab in 2005 with one Bloomberg Terminal and soon added more after professors noticed how popular the Terminal was with students. “As a student, I think it is really helpful because you get a hands-on introduction to finance during freshman year,” says Scott Dunleavy ’17 VSB from South Brunswick, N.J. “I think most students think it is cool because other than that most freshmen wouldn’t get a chance to use the finance lab.”



VSB Launches FiRST

(Finance Research Scholars Training) Program Last spring, the Villanova School of Business launched Finance Research Scholars Training or FiRST. This unique program pairs undergraduate students one-on-one with Finance faculty to work on research projects. VSB uniquely trains students on research areas and techniques during a one-credit class called Financial Scholars Seminar. These students can then apply to be Finance Research Associates to work directly with a faculty member and assist with their research. “This is the first formalized training program to promote undergraduate research in VSB,” said Michael Pagano, PhD, The Robert J. and Mary Ellen Darretta Endowed Chair in Finance. “Students are exposed to different types of finance and taught to look at finance from a research perspective.” Students can take the Financial Scholars Seminar class during their freshman or sophomore year. It is a team-taught seminar and the students are also invited to hear visiting scholars and participate in literature reviews.


Villanova Business / Winter 2016

At the end of the semester, students can apply for a Finance Research Associate position. If accepted, they are given a stipend, and work directly with a faculty member on finance research.

“ This is the first formalized training program to promote undergraduate research in VSB.” – Michael Pagano, PhD

Management Information Systems and International Business co-major Melissa Kostecki ’18 VSB is one of the very first students to be accepted as a research associate in the FiRST program. “The Financial Scholars Seminar truly became a valuable asset to my understanding of finance and business as I was given the opportunity to learn from VSB professors about topics in finance, as well as listen to guest speakers from other universities present their current work,” Melissa said. “Sitting in on these presentations amongst the graduate business students and professors showed me the innerworkings behind the development of a research paper,” she continued.

“The best part is how much of a resource the professors are. I am now working with Professor [Tina] Yang as a research associate and gaining hands-on experience by assisting her on researching prevalent financial and corporate matters. Overall, I would definitely recommend this course to any underclassmen who would like to get ahead in finance and begin learning about all the different aspects of finance, while getting to know some wonderful professors along the way.”


Former Villanova running back Brian Westbrook ’02 VSB was inducted into the Philadelphia Eagles’ Hall of Fame in a special halftime ceremony during the team’s game against the New York Giants on October 19. Westbrook was honored to join the alumni and Eagles Hall of Fame members.

VSB launches the Charlotte and James V. O’Donnell ’63 Center for Professional Development Housed within the Clay Center, the O’Donnell Center will institutionalize VSB’s professional development resources as well as expand and enhance its offerings to students. The O’Donnell Center will positively impact students by helping them be even better prepared for careers after college, and by increasing their access to real-world experience through interactions with businesses, employers, recruiters and the Villanova alumni network.

VSB thanks the O’Donnells for their investment in our students’ future.

VSB hosted a launch celebration on Sept. 22, 2015 to thank Charlotte and Jim for their generosity and belief in professional development. There were activities planned throughout the day for students and faculty to celebrate, including finishing the sentence “My dream job is…” on the Bartley chalkboard wall, a Business Society Fair for students to interact with leaders from more than 20 student professional groups, and a Handshake Open House to learn about and view demos of the new campus career management system.

On April 18, 2015, over 300 women from across the Mid-Atlantic region gathered at the Chemical Heritage Foundation in Philadelphia to participate in the Women in Technology Summit. In this annual event women come together to learn, network and inspire each other. This year’s theme was “Inspiring Women to Take a Chance” and keynote speakers included networking strategist and venture capitalist Kelly Hoey and NBC10 News’ co-anchor Renee Chenault-Fattah. The Innovation, Creativity, and Entrepreneurship (ICE) Institute collaborated with the MIS Society to send 11 students and one faculty member to the summit. Our students came from eclectic disciplines, representing the colleges across campus. The event exposed our students to the ever-changing world of technology and strengthened their development as tomorrow’s female business leaders.


Women in Technology Summit





Why most financial institutions are threatened—yet intrigued— by the prospect of cryptocurrency like Bitcoin. Investments in financial technology startups have recently quadrupled, growing from just over $3 billion in 2013 to over $12 billion in 2014. Today, the world’s largest stock exchange features a Bitcoin Index (NYXBT), and the NASDAQ has announced that it plans to use Bitcoin’s platform to issue and transfer shares of privately held companies. What exactly is this “magic Internet money” changing the world of finance and what do you need to understand about it? Bitcoin is the first decentralized digital currency and uses peer-to-peer technology with no central authority. Bitcoins provide a number of advantages over traditional currencies; because they are digital coins that can be sent through the internet, they eliminate the need for banks and clearinghouses, allowing for substantially lower transaction fees. They can also be used in every country, accounts cannot be frozen, and there are no prerequisites or arbitrary limits. Users can purchase bitcoins on several currency exchanges and then they are stored in digital wallets on computers or mobile devices.

Sending bitcoins is as simple as sending an email. All Bitcoin transactions occur on a network called the blockchain, a transparent and immutable public ledger. The blockchain, accessible to anyone with an internet connection, constantly grows as new “completed” blocks are added to it with a new set of recordings. The blockchain is managed by bitcoin “miners” who verify transactions in exchange for newly generated bitcoins. This verification process prevents the same bitcoin from being spent twice.


Villanova Business / Winter 2016

So why have many of the major financial institutions including Citi Bank, UBS, Barclays, Goldman Sachs and Santander been quietly, but carefully, examining the opportunities offered by this new technology? They are vying to be the first successful adopters of Bitcoin, first described in a 2008 white paper published under the alias “Satoshi Nakamoto.”


$12 BILLION The potential impact of such a disruptive technology is vast. Thinkers from around the world are joining together with legislators in proactive conversations to brainstorm uses and threats to its adoption. As the general public becomes more aware of the possible positive impact of digital currencies, widespread adoption of a digital currency system such as Bitcoin could allow for global interconnectedness that surpasses governmental, political and cultural systems. Sue Metzger, Instructor, Accountancy & Information Systems has more to add. She has incorporated the topic of digital currency into the curriculum of her Strategic Information Technologies course required for all VSB sophomores. “Bitcoin is another example of how technology is disrupting traditional business models—the financial services industry is being challenged in the same way Uber is overriding the traditional yellow cab service. Bitcoin and other topics like mobility, cloud and high frequency trading help students realize that today a successful business leader must also be a savvy technologist,” Metzger said.


VSB Summer Internships See how VSB students spent their summers! These are just a few of many VSB students who used their skills and talents to earn internships across a variety of industries each summer. The faculty and staff at VSB encourage students to supplement their learning by gaining hands-on experience outside of the classroom, and summer internships offer an excellent opportunity to do so.

THOMAS RODRIGUEZ Time, Inc. Spending his days at the Time, Inc. headquarters in New York City as the Consumer Marketing & Revenue Intern, senior Marketing and International Business major Thomas Rodriguez was exposed to a variety of high-level projects.



As the Online Marketing Intern at QVC, Claire Asmussen, a senior Marketing and International Business major, loved learning the ins and outs of how an international corporation operates.

JEANETTE DING Deloitte A senior MIS and Finance major, Jeanette Ding spent her summer as a Business Technology Analyst Summer Scholar at Deloitte where she took on the role of a full-time consultant.

LIZ FISKE Zonoff Inc. Liz Fiske, senior Management and International Business major, interned at Zonoff Inc., where she was exposed to the inner-workings of a successful startup at the forefront of the Internet of Things.


Bowstring Studios

At Bowstring Studios, senior Communications major and VSB student worker Jonathan Mantovani was exposed to all aspects of the media production process.



Villanova Team Wins Second Place in Game Day Sports Case Competition

Last April, Villanova University School of Law sponsored the second annual Game Day Sports Case Competition, the only interdisciplinary sports case competition that allows MBA and Juris Doctor (JD) students to analyze, present and negotiate solutions to real-world business problems. The 16 teams consisted of three to five students with at least one MBA and one JD student and represented University of Virginia, Wharton, Boston College and Carnegie Mellon, among others.

“The case competition day was a perfect balance between networking opportunities and receiving career guidance.” – Michael Cunningham

The Villanova team, which included Michael Cunningham ’15 MBA, Daniel Nugent ’16 MBA, Mike Camastra ’16 VLS and Tomaso Denoia ’16 VLS, came in second place. “This experience reaffirmed the extraordinary opportunities provided through the Villanova MBA program,” said Cunningham. About the competition, Nugent said, “It tested our overall business knowledge as well as our presentation and teamwork skills. Our team differentiated ourselves because we trusted each other from our very first meeting through the day of the competition.”

From College to Colleagues,

The Social Media Waves Keep Coming Success is rooted in this principle—it evolves. Tom Krueger ’11 VSB and Eric Adams ’11 CLAS had a mission and a vision to help society reform its relationship with social media. They recently launched Ourglass, an app that allows users to chronicle dayto-day experiences with close family and friends through pictures and captions. In the virtual-facilitated world that we live in, Ourglass cultivates our closest relationships. Ourglass grew out of PlannedUp (see Villanova Business, summer/ fall 2013), which combined organization and socialization in an interactive forum. Krueger and Adams believe that their philosophical basis of this app is a uniquely Villanovan trait. They want to bring us closer to the people we care about by sharing the details of daily life— something existing social media platforms are not built to do. Ourglass is currently available for all iOS devices and soon to be offered for Android phones, so be sure to download!



Exceptional Programming The Youth Entrepreneurship Program teaches young people to run responsible businesses, with the intention of steering them toward a positive path for their future. To encourage entrepreneurship and teach business practice to inner-city youth, the Center for Church Management & Business Ethics launched and recently expanded the Youth Entrepreneurship Program (YEP), designed to instill creative spirit and business acumen among at-risk youth. Ronald Hill, PhD, the Richard J. and Barbara Naclerio Endowed Chair in Business and the faculty director for Business Ethics in the Center for Church Management and Business Ethics, started a trial program in West Philadelphia in conjunction with the Philadelphia Youth Transformation Initiative. With the help of VSB undergraduate students, middle and high school students wrote a short proposal and presented their ideas to receive funding of up to $250 per person. In 2012, seven projects were funded, and the students spent the summer developing and selling their goods and services at markets throughout the city. In 2015, YEP kicked off its most successful summer yet with a full day of training on campus for over 65 students from West Philadelphia, North Philadelphia, Chester and Camden. Guided by Villanova faculty and staff, undergraduate students, and community partners, the participants were coached to create their business plans and account for their profits. These students continued to develop and sell their products and services during the summer at markets throughout the city. The program expanded during the subsequent summers to include even more students in West Philadelphia, North Philadelphia and Camden. Each project had positive revenue, and a celebration was held on the Villanova campus. Some of the students decided to continue their entrepreneurial ventures throughout the school year. While the program has expanded exponentially over the past four years, plans are already underway to further expand the program into other areas around the Philadelphia region and continue to touch the lives of Philadelphia youth.



Joseph Delaney ’85 VSB & Chris Poch ’83 VSB

FRIENDS FROM THE HEART FOREVER, Delta Kappa Epsilon’s ΔKE motto, is a phrase Joe Delaney and Chris Poch have lived by since they joined the fraternity. The fraternity brothers have remained colleagues and friends, and together decided to honor ΔKE by funding and naming a new student-managed fund in honor of the fraternity that brought them together. Planning started when Delaney, who has supported the Applied Finance Lab and been involved with the student-managed large- and mid-cap funds for nearly 10 years, realized today’s students needed the opportunity to manage small-cap funds too. Counting on his friend’s backing, he contacted Poch and together they donated money to establish the small-cap fund called the Delta Fund.


Villanova Business / Winter 2016



Their goal was to provide students with an opportunity to manage stock funds across all sizes—large-, mid- and smallcap—which will ultimately also allow the Equity Society to expand. “I was encouraged early in my career to be involved in community service and give back to my hometown,” said Delaney. “Supporting Villanova was an obvious choice.” This altruistic mindset influenced his decision to help students in a real-life way.

The Delta Fund in action

Investing in the future of VSB students

Forty-two Finance majors worked diligently on the new small-cap fund throughout the spring semester in VSB’s Applied Finance Lab, one of the first and best of its kind in the nation, which includes a simulated trading room and is designed to offer students the same real-time resources available to Wall Street traders. Then came time for the students to present their performance results of the Delta Fund to Delaney and Poch in addition to other members of the Finance Department Advisory Council (FDAC) at the semi-annual meeting.

“It’s been personally rewarding to invest in the future of VSB students by providing an educational understanding of working with a small-cap fund, and it’s been equally as rewarding to reconnect with Chris and strengthen my relationship with Villanova,” Delaney continues.

“The students were so impressive, presented their results professionally, and hopefully had some fun in the process,” says Poch, current director of business development and managing director for The Glenmede Trust Company. “I’m proud to help give VSB students the opportunity to manage live money, find out if they enjoy it, and speak intelligently about it with potential employers.”

Currently the president of Princeton Group Advisors, LLC, Delaney’s previous work includes co-founding Waterville Capital, LLC and multi-strategy hedge fund Old Lane, LP, and serving as a managing director of fixed income at Morgan Stanley. “Joe and Chris’ generosity allows VSB to give our students a unique experience managing small-cap funds that they wouldn’t receive anywhere else,” explains Daniel Wright, PhD, Interim Dean of the Villanova School of Business. “As active members of the FDAC, they both bring a vision that enhances our academic offering and also provides hands-on, real-life experience. We’re extremely thankful for their contributions.”



FASHION While most college students are busy interning for other companies, Chinasa Nwokocha ’18 VSB is busy running her own company right  out of her dorm room.




While most college students we busy interning for other companies, Chinasa Nwokocha ’18 VSB was busy running her own company right out of her dorm room in 2014. Thanks to her unique fashion sense and a successful GoFundMe campaign, she founded Ataria NYC, and in less than two years she has gone from selling t-shirts to becoming a successful, high-end designer with plans of growing her brand to the size of Zara or H&M—all while pursuing a Finance major and Analytics minor at VSB. Originally hailing from Nigeria and raised in the Bronx, N.Y., she began serving customers worldwide in 2015 and her sales have nearly doubled. She has spent her weekends participating in more than 30 fashion shows across the country, including a fashion show at Villanova hosted by the African Caribbean Association. This spring semester, she will also participate in a Canadian fashion tour in hopes of expanding her international presence.

“When I realized that I was making money and had natural business instincts, I knew I could make this t-shirt business something bigger than I imagined,” she says. She was determined to expand the company. As she says, “being at Villanova makes you want to do more than just go to class.” After connecting with three new team members– including a fashion designer and a photographer to showcase her clothes–Chinasa raised additional

“Being at Villanova makes you want to do more than just go to class.” she says. The genesis of her company was simple: in her dorm room her freshman year, Chinasa and her friends discussed how emojis were on the rise for teens. Seeing a huge gap between African culture and mainstream fashion, she decided to start a t-shirt line that featured emojis and quotes related to West African culture. She was out of stock within a month. But Chinasa didn’t stop there. When she didn’t land an internship the summer following her freshman year, she knew she needed another way to gather business experience. So she launched her brand and worked as a freelance designer to learn as much as she could about the fashion industry.

the Innovation, Creativity and Entrepreneurship Institute II Luscri critiquing her business pitch; or her fellow Villanova students who weigh in on design choices and direction. Her mission is to make Ataria NYC a fashion destination that offers everyday clothing products influenced by African and European culture. Ataria, which means “high-quality cloth” in her native Ghanaian, focuses on creating an appreciation for global culture by bridging the gap between African and European clothing styles. As she explains, “With every piece of clothing, Ataria NYC creates a sense of pride in global culture.”

funds on GoFundMe, and with that capital was able to produce a new high-fashion line based on West African style and culture. Since then, Ataria NYC has outfitted Nigerian artists in their music videos, as well as Philadelphia- and New York-based African artists. Chinasa is not your average VSB student. When she applied to the business school, she attached items from a fashion show she hosted at her high school with a South African fashion company and the Villanova admissions officer took notice. Ever since then, Chinasa said she has found support across the Villanova campus, whether it’s Sue Metzger, Instructor, Accountancy & Information Systems, who helped her with e-commerce; Executive Director of

Chinasa Nwokocha ’18 VSB



Interim Vice Dean

Dr. Wen Mao Villanova faculty members routinely outshine their peers for their unparalleled dedication to teaching, research and service—and Wen Mao, PhD is certainly no exception. After 20 years in the Economics department, Dr. Mao continues to bring a high level of enthusiasm to her work with students, her research and the Villanova community—something she’s brought to her new role as Interim Vice Dean of the School of Business. Teachers have had a profound influence on Dr. Mao’s life. Both her father and great-grandfather were professors in China where she grew up. “Teaching is in my blood,” she quips. It was while pursuing her PhD at Virginia Tech that she chose to specialize in game theory. Dr. Mao credits that choice to professors who shared their passion for this area of microeconomics that looks at strategic decisionmaking. Today, much of her research stems from game theory, including papers related to pricing, competition, decision-making in the stock market, elections and even religious organizational structures. Now as the Interim Vice Dean, Dr. Mao switches from teaching and research to give back to Villanova. She sees the role as supporting her fellow faculty and staff and clearing the way of obstacles so they can pursue their passions—whether in teaching, research or elsewhere. She makes other significant contributions to the Villanova community, especially as it relates to her love for China. Every summer since the 1990s, Dr. Mao has led students on an immersion program to her homeland, well before it was as popular—or as expensive—as it is today. During the program, one- to two-dozen undergraduates spend six to seven weeks at the Shanghai Academy of


Villanova Business / Winter 2016

Social Sciences, studying as well as working at any number of English-speaking companies. With the help of a placement agency and alumni, Dr. Mao coordinates a massive effort to identify internships at think tanks, NGOs, investment firms, real estate development companies and more general business roles in communications and human resources. She also hosts a group of VSB graduate students in Shanghai and Beijing for two weeks of lectures and corporate visits with top executives—all designed to expose students to the Chinese business culture. Despite the considerable time and effort required to run this program, Dr. Mao remains fully committed to its continued success. Enrollment increased by 100% this year over last, despite the escalating tuition cost per student. Fortunately, through the Center for Global Leadership, the Freeman Foundation awarded Villanova a $100,000 grant to support internships in Asia, which benefited Dr. Mao’s program in China this past summer. The university will apply for another $400,000 grant to create more opportunities for students to intern throughout Asia over the next two years. “Now students who otherwise couldn’t afford the program have been able to attend,” explains Dr. Mao. “A more diverse group brings so many more perspectives and everyone becomes more open minded”

“Part of the reason I chose teaching is because we really change people’s lives. My life was certainly shaped by those who taught me.” — DR. WEN MAO



Therese DeVries Narzikul Throughout her distinguished career in health care, Therese DeVries Narzikul ’04 EMBA has dedicated herself to enhancing patient care, both with individuals and systemically. What’s remarkable is the way she’s applied the principles and concepts so deeply rooted in Villanova’s Executive MBA (EMBA) to make a difference on many levels. Well before attending Villanova, Narzikul worked as a Nurse Practitioner where she managed a Geriatric Assessment Team at the former Medical College of Pennsylvania. It was in this context that Narzikul first worked with a cross-functional team of nurses, therapists, physicians and other professionals and experienced the value of leveraging multiple perspectives to deliver more holistic care to patients. This model made sense to Narzikul. While continuing to provide primary care to older adults, Narzikul started to teach clinical nursing at the University of Pennsylvania. With the students, on the floors of the hospital, Narzikul saw how administrative decisions made to change supplies, equipment and staffing often dramatically impacted patient outcomes.

Teaching gives me an opportunity to continue to learn and share some of the program’s core concepts— particularly the importance of understanding the context of an organization while engaging key stakeholders to create a shared purpose for what they are trying to accomplish and why. Taking this interactive approach to design solutions with mission-driven organizations is especially rewarding for everyone involved.

“I found myself asking how and why some of these decisions were being made,” explains Narzikul. “I knew I needed a framework to help me to better understand the thought process.” Villanova’s EMBA introduced Narzikul to systems thinking, an approach to problem-solving that examines an organization as a system of interdependent structures, functions and processes to understand how to design changes to improve operational as well as overall organizational performance. It brings together multiple perspectives and disciplines to consider the effects of decisions on people and processes and to create structures and procedures that drive better outcomes. Today, as Vice President of Practice Design and Care Coordination at Jefferson Health in Philadelphia, Narzikul leverages a systems thinking approach regularly. She leads a diverse team of health care professionals to find better ways to manage the health of the broader population. Ultimately, she wants to establish a system where outpatient care becomes less transactional and more focused on building lasting interactions with patients, while improving the caregiver experience and reducing costs. Narzikul also lends her expertise beyond the health care industry. She has served on the Board of Examiners for the prestigious Baldridge Performance Excellence Program, which sets the bar for performance excellence. She also regularly returns to Villanova and the EMBA program to give back. In addition to participating on the EMBA Advisory Board, Narzikul serves as adjunct faculty to the Social Enterprise Consulting Practicum. Here students gain practical experience applying the concepts and principles of systems thinking to nonprofits and other similar entities dedicated to the common good. Narzikul functions as a consultant to students as they advise organizations on the strategic ways to become more efficient and extend their abilities to fulfill their missions.


Villanova Business / Winter 2016


VSB DEAN’S ADVISORY COUNCIL (DAC) The DAC provides advice and guidance to the dean of the Villanova School of Business on important strategic initiatives under consideration at the school. Josef “Joe” Allen ’89 VSB

General Manager, Global Operations Center GE

Robert “Rob” Arning P ’17

Martin “Marty” Hughes ’79 VSB

Francis “Frank” I. Perier Jr. ’81 VSB

Christine James ’91 VSB

Michael “Mike” Petrane ’93 VSB

CEO & Director Redwood Trust

Vice Chair KPMG LLP

Managing Director, Institutional Client Services Wells Capital Management

Dax Basdeo, PhD

William “Bill” M. Kelly ’72 VSB

Richard “Rick” Betz ’84 VSB

Peter Knobloch ’75 VSB

James “Jim” R. Boyle P ’14

Jeffrey “Jeff” Lagarce P ’12

Robert “Bob” B. Burke ’83 VSB

Joseph “Joe” Lamastra ’83 VSB, P ’12, ’15

Chief Officer Cayman Islands Government Executive Vice President & COO Resolute Energy Corporation Chairman & CEO Zillion

Chief Executive Officer Par-Four Investment Management, LLC

Kevin M. Curley ’80 VSB, P ’09 President & CEO Curley Financial Group, LLC

Joseph “Joe” V. Del Raso, Esq. ’74 VSB, ’83 VLS Partner Pepper Hamilton LLP

Peter P. DiLullo ’72 VSB CEO LCOR

Kevin J. Dunphy ’82 VSB

Managing Director Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ. Ltd

Joseph “Joe” J. Fico P ’13

CEO & President USI Insurance Services LLC

Mark Ford P ’11, ’15

Executive Vice President Global Advertising Time Inc.

Chris Gheysens ’93 VSB - Chair President & CEO Wawa, Inc.

Lisa M. Gray ’86 VSB

Co-Founder & Managing Partner Phoenix IP Ventures

Peter Hofbauer ’84 VSB

Chief Operating Officer Concord International Investments Group

Chief Executive Office Blue Tee Corporation

Retired Chief Investment Officer Assembly Global Head of DC and Institutional Fidelity International Ltd.

Chairman & CEO Sandbridge Capital

Gerard S. LaRocca P ’14

Managing Director & Chief Administrative Officer Barclays Capital

John G. Maxwell ’82 VSB

Chairman of the Global Board of Partners PwC

John McCarthy P ’15

Retired EVP Finance and CFO Forest Laboratories, Inc. Partner, Assurance Services EY

John F. Phinney P ’17 Chairman Convergence Inc.

Paul D. Ridder ’00 VSB President Tasty Baking Company

Kenneth “Ken” M. Roessler ’84 VSB President & Chief Executive Officer BWAY Corporation

Christopher “Chris” G. Ryan ’83 COE President, Americas; Pharmaceutical Packaging Systems West Pharmaceutical Services, Inc.

Michael A. Scully ’70 VSB Co-Chairman Scully Company

William “Bill” M. Shockley ’83 VSB, P ’14, ’16 Partner Tinicum Capital Partners

Celestine “Tina” Simmons, ’89 VSB

President & COO McCarthy Tire & Automotive Centers

Senior Vice President, Human Resources, Central Division Comcast Corporation

Bill R. McDermott

Stephen “Steve” Spaeder ’88 VSB

Michael “Mike” McLaughlin ’88 VSB

Christopher “Chris” J. Swift P ’17

Chief Executive Officer SAP SE US Country Head and Head of Credit Markets Macquarie Group Limited

Robert “Bob” A. McMahon ’79 VSB President, US Market Merck & Co., Inc.

Robert “Rob” J. McNeill Jr. ’88 VSB

SVP, Acquisitions and Development Equus Capital Partners, Ltd.

Chairman & Chief Executive Officer The Hartford Financial Services Group Inc.

Michael “Mike” J. Thomson ’80 VSB Retired President & COO SunCoke Energy, Inc.

William “Bill” Tucker ’81 VSB, P ’15

Managing Partner, Greater Philadelphia Deloitte & Touche LLP

Executive Vice President, Media Relations 4A’s

Jeffrey “Jeff” Miller ’79 VSB

Susan Wolford ’77 CLAS

Robert Mulhall ’80 VSB, P ’07 – VUAA Liaison

Daniel Wright, PhD

President, Studio Operations The Walt Disney Studios

Partner, Assurance EY

Managing Director, Group Head of the Business Services and Media Group BMO Capital Markets Corp. Interim Dean Villanova School of Business




800 Lancaster Avenue Villanova, PA 19085-1678



VILLANOVA MBA Executive | Part-Time | Online Learn more at MBA.VILLANOVA.EDU RANKED #12 IN THE NATION by Bloomberg Businessweek

Profile for Villanova School of Business

Winter 2016 Villanova Business Magazine  

Winter 2016 Villanova Business Magazine