Business program causes concern for some students

By: Xavier University’s William’s College of Business is reporting a 90 percent employment rate following graduation for the 2013-2014 school year.
According to Cynthia Stockwell, Assistant Dean for Undergraduate Programs, this is not an accident. In 2000, the College created a Business Administrations, or BUAD, co-curricular course for students in business professions.

Among questions of what the BUAD seminar program entails, there was an undercurrent of doubt as to its effectiveness. A number of students enrolled in the program have expressed concern that they are not getting their money’s worth.

“I felt as if the BUAD program was always one step behind,” junior management and human resources major Rebecca Mock said. “When they held seminars on networking, most of my classmates and I already were networking in various ways. When they held seminars on interviewing, it was after most internships had already finished their interviews.”

For some students, the pace of the program seemed inconsistent with the amount they were paying.

“There are over 250 juniors enrolled in the BUAD program,” junior economics and finance double major Robert Lamey said. “Therefore, the Williams College of Business receives around $125,000 in annual fees from just the junior class. It is ludicrous to think that all of that money is spent on handouts, folders and a couple speakers.”

Even when students do not utilize all the resources of the program, they found that they still were charged the full amount.

“My friends and I made the decision not to attend any of the past two semesters, roughly 10 seminars, of BUAD programs,” junior finance major René Betance said. “We have still been charged $250 for every semester since freshman year. Despite our absence, we have ‘progressed’ in the BUAD program along with all of the other business majors.”

Stockwell points to increases in performance by students enrolled in the program to defend the fees.

“Before BUAD, students weren’t interviewing well,” Stockwell said. “They needed résumé building. They needed career development training. The students needed focused attention.”

Stockwell is adamant that BUAD remains absolutely necessary for the success of the students.

According to the program specifications, the extra $250 a semester that is standard for all business students is well worth the program.

“BUAD, in conjugation with a sophomore/junior level course called Managerial Communications, offers six events to freshman and sophomores and five events to juniors and seniors,” Stockwell said. “Only one is optional for each class level; the rest are all mandatory.”

The events range from guest speakers to seminars on résumé and profile building. There are formal and informal networking workshops with representatives from major businesses in the area.

“In 2000, the College of Business realized that employers were not totally satisfied with Xavier students,” Stockwell said. “Performances in the workforce were satisfactory, but interviewing skills, résumés and the ability to self-market were skills that students were lacking.”
Stockwell, Monda Bullucks and Andrea Mersmann came together to develop the program.
“At the time, the only course of the kind was the managerial communications course, which is still offered,” Stockwell said. “But the administrators did not feel that it was sufficient for complete career development.”

“BUAD is like a career development office especially for business students,” Stockwell said. “The fee offsets the takeaway from the career development office and helps pay for events hosted by BUAD.”

Since BUAD began, business students have demonstrated improvement in regards to employers and rate of employment upon graduation has gone up significantly.Max Bruns ~Staff Writer~