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Moody Business News: March 2020

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Each month, we will share news and accomplishments of Moody College of Business faculty, staff, and students.

March 2020

Programs & Events

  • Lisa Bowles organized a Hospitality Management Field Trip to New Orleans on February 28 where students met with employers and alumni and toured facilities. Becky Dubois, 23 students, and several University staff attended. Tours included:
  1. Mercedes-Benz Superdome/Smoothie King Center - facility management/venue perspective
  2. The National WWII Museum - attraction perspective with HR and accessibility/visitor services
  3. Redfish Grill New Orleans - restaurant perspective
  4. Hyatt Centric French Quarter - lodging perspective
  • Valerie McGehee hosted a mock speed selling competition to prepare the student sales team for their upcoming competition on March 13. Nine sales team students competed. Megan Dejean came in first place, Jacob LeJeune came in second place, and Tyler Domingue came in third place. Volunteer judges included:
    • Noel Norwood, Owner of Pop-a-Lock
    • Anna Olivier, Owner of John Olivier Builders
    • Scott Gibson, Director of Talent Acquisition and Development at Stuller
    • Tracy Aymond, Director at PHP
    • Sean Tracalek, GM at KADN
    • Nanette Laverne, VP Sales at KADN
    • Kris Fontenot, medical device sales rep at Cardinal Health
    • Greg Palmer, President of
  • Moody College of Business hosted virtually the final student pitch of the Moody Business Pitch Competition on March 26. Thank you to Valerie McGehee for leading the project, Brian Bolton and Heidi Melancon for serving as judges, and Denise Benton, Lisa Bowles, Fred Davis, Valerie McGehee, Reed Nelson, and Geoff Stewart for serving as student mentors. 1st place winner Paul Pryor, Leviathan (Electrical and Computer Engineering major), 2nd place Garrett Hebert, The Paw Pub (MBA), and 3rd place Ambika Dahal, Frubotics (Ph.D. in Systems/Mechanical Engineering). Additional finalists were Jeanne-Claire Benton (Psychology major) and Daniel Farris, The Lagniappe Stop (Management major). Thank you to our event sponsors EAP, BRF, and Opportunity Machine.

Awards and Accolades

  • Vanessa Hill served as a mentor for attendees and Patricia Lanier presented “Meet Generation Z” at the UL Lafayette 2020 Women's Leadership Conference held March 5.
  • Moody Business part-time MBA has been included in the 2021 U.S. News & World Report Best Graduate School rankings.
  • Tammy Hall is the recipient of the Excellence in Teaching award for Fall 2019 by the UL Lafayette Chapter of the National Society of Leadership and Success. The award recognizes excellence in student development.
  • David Baker and Valerie McGehee had their research paper "Exploring Cultural Intelligence and Virtual International Sales Team Coaching” accepted to the Global Sales Science Institute (GSSI) 2020 Conference in Montpelier, France.
  • UL Lafayette Sales Team student Dan Farris competed at the Redbird National Sales Competition hosted by Illinois State University. This was Dan’s first role play competition and during the second round he received an almost perfect score from one of the judges. Dan is a management major.
  • Five Hospitality Management students (Christina Chauffe, Jesse Ochoa, Natalia Vincente, Sadie Mouledaux, and Kiersten Freeman) received the Louisiana Restaurant Association scholarship and will be recognized at the LRA "Serving the Future" awards ceremony in New Orleans.
  • Students in BLAW 340 Notary Public, a notary preparation course taught by Fred Davis, achieved a pass rate of 54% on the state notary exam. By comparison, the state average exam pass rate was 18%.
  • MBA students Rachel Davis, Garrett Olhmeyer, and Lakshmi H Sirigireddy in Geoff Stewart’s class had their submission "Transforming Generational Poverty Mindset through the Public Education System in Rural Communities" accepted for oral presentation at the 5th Annual LSU Shreveport Regional Student Scholars Forum.

Research, Engagement, and Publications

  • Geoff Stewart presented highlights of the findings of a comprehensive seafood supply chain study of Louisiana’s coastal parishes at the upcoming Louisiana Fisheries Forward Summit.
  • Patricia Lanier and Keith Credo won the Most Innovative award at the National Business and Economics Society Annual Conference for their paper “Social Loafing, Impression Management, and Workplace Deviance: Organizational Implications of Biological Faking Behaviors”.
  • Tammy Hall hosted guest speaker Christy Reeves, Vice President of Regional Government Relations and Community Affairs for Ochsner Health System. Christy visited the MGMT 380 Leadership class.
  • David Ried hosted several guest speakers in MGMT 320 including Nicholas Moss of UL Career Services who shared information on how they assist student in exploring career choices and alternatives and Andrew Tregre, Financial Planner and Abbey Dixon, Director of Recruitment for Northwestern Mutual who discussed overcoming debt after graduation and what skills they look for in intern candidates, Madison Scioneaux, Moody Business student and International Brand Intern for McIIhenny Company.
  • Valerie McGehee hosted guest speaker Noel Norwood, owner of Pop-a-Lock, for the Sales Program Speaker Series. She also hosted several virtual guest speakers in her classes including:
    • Scott Miller from FranklinCovey, and author of the class book “Management mess to leadership success”, joined the sales management class.
    • Scott Gibson, director of talent acquisition at Stuller, gave students the predictive index test and next week he will interpret students’ results. This will help the students understand their management and leadership strengths better.
    • Robert Washington, former professional MMA fighter, a Navy veteran, a motivational speaker, and a sales executive at Gartner, joined the advanced sales class. He motivated the class to keep a positive attitude in these tough times.
    • Reece Theriot joined the professional sales class and shared his thoughts about marketing as it relates to sales and relationship building.
  • Fred Davis hosted Kevin Colomb, manager Fezzo's Restaurant in Broussard, as a guest speak in his Legal Issues in Hospitality Industry class. Kevin is a UL Lafayette graduate in the hospitality management program and currently a Moody Business MBA student.
  • The Hospitality Management program sponsored the FCCLA State Convention. Becky Dubois hosted a recruiting table at the event in Alexandria. 234 Louisiana high school students competed in a wide range of categories.
  • Brian Bolton and Bill Ferguson provided expert commentary to The Vermilion for the news article “Coronavirus concerns causes stock market drop, UL business faculty elaborate”.
  • Mary Luquette had her article "Online learning during outbreak requires different skill set" published by The Daily Advertiser.
  • Gary Wagner is producing daily COVID-19 reports for the Louisiana Department of Health/Governor's Office. The Governor shared Gary's charts in a recent press conference which has led to Gary participating in numerous local, regional, and national media interviews including:
    • FOX 15: “Coronavirus Getting Answers: Economic Expert Chats About Economic Impact of COVID-19”
    • Discover Lafayette podcast and The Advocate: “Municipal governments should rely more on property tax than sales tax”
    • The Advocate: "Economic impact of coronavirus in Louisiana may be akin to a hurricane, flood, but with big uncertainties"
    • CNN: "Louisiana governor says his state has the fastest growth rate of coronavirus cases in the world" 
    • The Advocate: "UL data: State's growth in confirmed coronavirus cases grew faster than anywhere else in the world"
    • WGNO: "Gov. Edwards: Louisiana has the highest initial growth rate in COVID-19 cases in the world" 
    • Daily Mail UK: "LA Senator says drinking at Mardi Gras caused coronavirus spread" 
    • The Advertiser: "Louisiana experiences fastest COVID-19 case increase in the world in first weeks"
    • Houma Courier: "Louisiana's coronavirus cases grew faster than anywhere on Earth, data show”
  • Maria Slater, Reed Nelson, Heidi Melancon, and several Moody Business students are producing small business and Census 2020 videos to share with the Hispanic business community.