Parent corner: Starting the college search 

There’s so much to consider as you and your student get ready for the big move to college! The process of finding the best program for your student can sometimes seem like a Herculean task. You would not, assuredly, be the first to feel overwhelmed!

With so many complex questions, it’s important to understand the needs of your student and your family. Is cost the most important factor? Is academic rigor and accreditation? Is the opportunity to study abroad without adding extra time to graduation? What about a hands-on learning experience, like an internship?

However, we are here to help. To find the right fit for your student, it’s important for both you and your student to do the homework and compare the schools, and we recommend sticking to the fundamentals. We’ll give you some basic questions to get started:

  1. What can my student expect during their first year?
    Find out about the opportunities available for your student. Will they get hands-on business experience? Will they receive support from faculty and peers? What about advising support?
  2. What majors are available?
    There are a lot of business majors and options available. When you begin your search, take the time to compare different majors and options for each school and check the accreditation for each program. The full list of business programs at Oregon State University can be found here.
  3. Will my student emerge ready for the career world?
    It’s important for students to build their confidence and establish a strong network of professionals. They can do this by connecting with industry professionals, alumni and faculty. Ask about internships, career placement rates and professional development opportunities. When students take the time to network, engage and meet with future employers, they emerge prepared for their career.

Answering these basic questions for each college will help you understand the strengths of each. And like any big project, give yourself time. Start the process early, consider the values of each school and weigh all the pros and cons. We know that as a parent, you want only the best for your student, so take the time to figure out what “best” means.

Take the time to visit campuses, talk to faculty, and research the additional opportunities and experiences your student will receive.

Women in Leadership Spring Break Trip

Touring the “Grate Room” at Tillamook Creamery’s Portland location, the Tillamook Outpost.


Women in Leadership trip opens secret Nike labs, “grate” room at Tillamook, and connects students with business leaders

The 2019 Women in Leadership Spring Break Trip, co-hosted by the Women in Leadership (WiL) student organization and the OSU Center for the Advancement of Women in Leadership, took 22 OSU student leaders representing six different colleges (and numerous student clubs) on an overnight visit to Portland. The trip included meeting and networking with women leaders at companies big and small, and attending the National Diversity Council’s Women in Leadership Symposium, an event sponsored by Lane Powell, featuring Portland women business leaders.

WiL student chapter president Lily Beck had a leadership role in planning the trip. “Since it was over spring break, not everyone was centrally located on campus. Some people were at home in Portland or around Corvallis, and we even had an online student fly in from Idaho. I had a lot of help to make sure all the logistics were lined up,” Beck said.


Tillamook, Nike and Green Zebra

Among the visits, the group toured Tillamook Creamery’s Portland location, the Tillamook Outpost, and sat for a workplace culture discussion with Sheila Murty, Tillamook’s executive vice president of people and culture, and Sibel Candemir, their vice president of categories.

Sarah Busmire, the Ecampus student from the College of Agriculture who flew in for the event, felt that the diversity discussions were the most valuable to her. “I learned a lot, and the question-and-answer session was awesome,” Busmire said. “I realized that many women face the same challenges in various times of life-from college students all the way to CEOs. It is important as a society that we begin to recognize those challenges and create workplaces where they don’t occur.”

Up next the group headed to Nike, paused to sign non-disclosure agreements and then embarked on an exclusive visit to Nike’s top secret, innovation-focused Valiant Labs. The discussion was led by Nike’s Shaherose Charania, senior director at Valiant Labs, and Liz Freuler, their director of brand and consumer marketing. Many suggested it was a highlight – but did not say much more!

The group then visited Green Zebra, a women-owned grocery chain that features local and organic food in communities that lack larger food retailers. Evelyn Murphy, Green Zebra’s chief people and operations officer, met the students and discussed their philosophy for the small local grocer as a community focal point.

“Green Zebra was really impressive in the fact that they wanted to make sure people in Portland had access to food in a healthy sustainable way,” said Beck. “They mentioned that they wanted people to be able to walk or bike in 20 minutes or less to be able to get to a grocery store. This desire to serve people was also evident in the environment they created among their workers as open and engaging people who were extremely inviting to our group.”


Networking and symposium

An evening networking mixer construed into a “flash mentoring” session allowed trip attendees to circulate through various tables for prompted discussions. Each station would seat two Portland professionals, and about six students taking on the topics.

“We structured the conversations so that students could learn about the challenges women face in the workplace, how to navigate those challenges and how to lead and create change,” said Audrey Iffert-Saleem, center director.

“I learned a so much about the incredible work being done by women in industry to empower other women and make a difference in the organizations they work in,” said College of Engineering student Umayal Annamalai. “I also had the chance to meet so many amazing women from OSU with a variety of backgrounds and aspirations.”

The following morning the group attended the National Diversity Council’s Women in Leadership Symposium at The Nines hotel in downtown Portland, joined by panelists from Bank of the Pacific, Tonkon Torp, Lane Powell, Portland Trail Blazers as well as College of Business Dean Mitzi Montoya. Attendees discussed topics such as building up the women around you, defeating gender-based harassment, the imposter syndrome and using technology for work-life integration.

Following the event, the group engaged in additional discussion over lunch with Portland business women, including members of the panel.

“We were all able to benefit from the connections we made, and the people we talked to. It was an amazing experience for me to be able to plan this kind of trip, and I would do it again in a heartbeat,” Beck said.

One year to a bachelor’s degree, with our Lane Community College fast-track arrangement

(l to r) Lane Community College President Margaret Hamilton and OSU College of Business Dean Mitzi Montoya signed a degree partnership agreement today to open a fast-track pathway to a bachelor’s degree.

One year to a bachelor’s degree, with our Lane Community College fast-track arrangement

One year to a bachelor’s degree, you’ve read that right!

Graduates with a business associates of applied science from the Eugene, Ore.-based Lane Community College can earn their bachelors degree in business from Oregon State University in one year thanks to an innovative new plan. College of Business Dean Mitzi Montoya and Lane Community College President Margaret Hamilton signed an agreement today in Corvallis, the first fast-track arrangement between the two educators.

Lane Community College and OSU College of Business have developed the agreement for LCC associate of applied science business graduates to transfer to Oregon State University and complete the coursework necessary for a bachelor’s in just one year.

Oregon State University has degree partnerships with all seventeen Oregon community colleges to provide a smooth path for Oregon students to earn their four-year degree. However, the LCC agreement is the first of its kind to build out the expedited curriculum plan. This is a great opportunity that paves the way for similar partnerships between LCC and other colleges at OSU.

“We’ve looked for a partner to establish this model, and we expect others to follow suit,” said Hamilton. “It’s a great day for our business programs, and it has been wonderful to see how well our students are treated when they get here.”

The agreement effectively creates a “2 + 1” degree that opens up options for Lane business students that aren’t available locally. The agreement will save students hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars while completing a bachelor’s at an outstanding business school.

Under the agreement, OSU will accept up to 120 credit hours from LCC that will count toward undergraduate business administration degree requirements. Students will then complete 60 upper-division credit hours at OSU to earn their bachelor’s degree.

“We’re excited to pave the way with innovative partnerships that give more students access to an OSU degree,” Montoya said.

The agreement provides for close personal attention for students to ensure success, including orientations, trainings, personal advising, appointment scheduling, access to scholarships, access to upper-division hybrid courses, and other assistance.

LCC and OSU anticipate improved admission, retention, and degree completion as a result of the arrangement.

The agreement will be reviewed in three years.

Fashion’s “Revolution” Showcases Student Apparel Designers

Oregon State University College of Business

Student groups host fashion evening

It was a beautiful but blustery evening – hence, no need for wind machines on this catwalk to add flounce and flair to the fashions as Mother Nature got that detail down.

The rest of the details – and there were many – from a requisite high-volume, heavy-bass sound system, crowds of spectators, and gorgeous models to the inspired clothing collections of burgeoning designers were handled to great success by student groups, the National Retail Federation Student Association and the American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists.

“Revolution,” the inaugural fashion event of the newly formed student clubs affiliated with the Merchandising Management and Design & Innovation Management majors at the college, featured the work of talented designers, and tapped into the edgy, global mood of change, sustainability and future uncertainty.

The first part of the show welcomed the talents of student designers from across OSU campus featuring “upcycled” garments constructed from discarded items, e.g., plastic bags, a Swiss military sleeping bag, old denim, fabric found in a dumpster, etc.

The second segment showcased the College of Business’ Apparel Design majors, and featured truly unique to OSU, unique to Oregon inspirations. Where else in the world will you see a wedding dress designed from waterproof material? Go Beavs!

The show, which created a space for each designer’s unique point of view, told a story that encompassed power, equality, and self-worth. Five designers ventured into the dystopian space of upcycled fashion; six submitted a single garment, and apparel design program students created seventeen collections.

The results – bright neon blocks of color, brave necklines, a patchwork of unique details and fabrics, complex paired with comfortable – came together in a long parade of stunning designs.

Bravo, brava, bravi! A great shout out to the designers, models, members of both organizations AATCC and NRFSA, faculty, the Memorial Union and Student Experience Center for their contributions and outstanding performance.

(p.s. Like our Facebook photos!)


Upcycled Garments

  • Jordan Farris
  • Amber Hill
  • Xuyang Huang
  • Irina Sergeyeva
  • Payton Smyer

Single Garments

  • Carley Conduff
  • Nicole Goecke
  • Xin Yu Liu
  • Alex Podeschi & Lauren Clay
  • Marie Recine


  • Katie Alston
  • Cassie Downing
  • Jessica Downing
  • Jordan Farris
  • Amber Hill
  • Leah Jaeger
  • Lauren Johnson
  • Melany Mailangkay
  • Meryl Muckenthaler
  • Hannah Norum
  • Marie Recine (2 collections)
  • Kirklynn Russell
  • Irina Sergeyeva
  • Payton Smyer
  • Alaura Unger
  • Catherine Wong

C2C a great fit for market researchers

The Honda Fit.
The Honda Fit.

Reggie Williams took many lessons away from his role as team leader on a Close to the Customer project that involved helping Honda plan a redesign of its popular subcompact car, the Fit.

“The Honda project was my first as part of the C2C and I learned that there may not be a clear-cut question from a client,” said Williams, who completed his psychology degree spring term. “Coming up with multiple solutions is helpful, as well as taking into consideration client needs and specifics of the market when coming up with a solution.”

The project involved Honda wanting “to get a feel for Instagram and what people were posting about their Honda Fit,” said Amanda Terhes, director of the C2C. “The exciting part for students was when they asked, ‘how do we do this,’ we said, ‘I don’t know but we’ll figure it out.’”

The student team led by Williams ended up pulling approximately 1,000 Honda Fit photos from Instagram and then categorized them thematically – e.g., by what activity they were being used for.

The themes were used to create topic guides for field research by marketing professor Jim McAlexander in the Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles areas. McAlexander conducted six one-on-one interviews with customers and also did nine triads – a triad is a mini focus group of three people.

McAlexander, whose contacts in the auto industry paved the way for C2C being granted the project, presented the results to Honda. The results are understandably proprietary as Honda prepares to execute the redesign of the Fit in five or six years — in such a way that the four-door, front-wheel-drive vehicle still appeals to current customers and potentially attracts new, first-time Fit owners as well.

Williams’ student team included finance major Chris Koenig and MBA student-to-be Jill Wells, plus a sociology major.

“It’s great to have a team with different backgrounds and diverse perspectives and approaches,” Williams said. “A lot of psychology goes into market research, understanding and eventually trying to influence behavior. Thinking outside of the box but at the same time maintaining structure and providing valid results is fundamental to the art of marketing research. It helped that we had a great staff of professors and our director who allowed us creative control and input while guiding us through the process.”

OSU Night – Top 5 reasons to choose Oregon State College of Business

Advisor Dan Schwab talks to a prospective business student at OSU Night.
Advisor Dan Schwab talks to a prospective business student at OSU Night.

The Oregon State College of Business spent Tuesday evening in Portland for OSU Night – a college fair designed for high-achieving high school students. To help all the bright and motivated students in attendance decide what to do in the fall, here are the top 5 reasons to choose the Oregon State College of Business:

  1. More majors. We offer more business majors than any other university in the state of Oregon. From accounting to marketing and everything in between, the College of Business provides students with a thorough and comprehensive understanding of their chosen major. The college also includes four design majors to choose from.
  2. Experiential Learning. A hands-on learning approach is integral to the College of Business education, and includes opportunities with the Austin Entrepreneurship Program, Austin Family Business Program, Close to the Customer Project and Advantage Accelerator. The College of Business has 19 student organizations that align with business and design majors, providing leadership and networking experience.
  3. Career Success Center. As the only college-specific career center on campus, the Career Success Center provides students with the resources to conduct a successful job and internship search through one-on-one consulting, resume review, networking events and workshops.
  4. International Exchange. The Arthur Stonehill International Exchange Program is one of the biggest of its kind in Oregon, offering 13 different exchange opportunities around the globe for business students. Additionally, design students can choose from a number of study-abroad programs and tours.
  5. Austin Hall. The College of Business’ new, 100-000-square-foot, state-of-the-art home has made a huge impact on student learning and experience at Oregon State. Austin Hall includes a 250-seat auditorium, café, event space and plenty of project rooms and computer seats.

Finance student doubles as dog trainer

Wrangler and Kenzie enjoy a break at Trader Bing's Cafe at Austin Hall.
Wrangler and Kenzie enjoy a break at Trader Bing’s Cafe at Austin Hall.

Animals have always been a big part of Kenzie Young’s life, so it’s only natural they’re a key component of her education at Oregon State – including one particular creature who’s become a fixture at Austin Hall.

That would be Wrangler, the 9-year-old dog Young is training to be a service animal.

“He goes everywhere with me,” said Young, who’s majoring in finance with a minor in animal science.

Young has had Wrangler, a border collie/McNab shepherd cross, since adopting him at six weeks old when her family lived in a rural setting in Yelm, Wash.

“He played Frisbee, herded horses,” she said. “He’s pretty much done everything.”

And now he’s learning to be a service dog for people battling depression and anxiety, specifically for a relative of Young’s who suffers from anxiety.

“Depression and anxiety kind of run in my family,” she said.

Wrangler’s training began a year and a half ago in classes attended by him and Young’s mother. At this stage, Young brings him with her as she goes about her daily life and rewards him with a treat every time he responds positively toward someone who looks sad.

Wrangler will conclude his training at the end of the school year, at which point he’ll be evaluated for two weeks by a representative of the United States Service Dog Registry. If he passes his evaluation, he’ll be officially certified, which gives him a formal stamp of legitimacy should anyone challenge his presence anywhere – for example, on a commercial airliner.

Working with Wrangler is part of a jam-packed schedule that Young deals with via “good time management skills” and a “lack of sleep.”

Supplementing her coursework, she’s interning for Linn County, doing auditing in the county’s general services department. She also works weekends as a cashier at Kmart, barrel races for the OSU rodeo team and serves as a brand ambassador for Bootights.

In addition, she’s partnering with College of Business online fashion magazine DAMchic to organize a Mom’s Weekend event that honors women role models on campus.

Career-wise, Young is “leaning toward being a financial analyst.”

“But I went to a Travel Friday to different investment banking firms,” she said. “And that was exciting, too.”

International Exchange Student Reception

The College of Business held a reception for international exchange students Friday, October 3 at The Vue in downtown Corvallis. The gathering was attended by international students who are here as part of the Arthur Stonehhill International Exchange Program.

Domestic Oregon State students paired up with the international students to help ease the transition joined the celebration, as well as and College of Business faculty and staff.

The Arthur Stonehill International Exchange Program is the biggest of its kind in the state of Oregon, and will host students from more than 20 different countries this year. The program allows students to gain cultural understanding and learn international business from a global perspective.

In addition to this reception, the College of Business also sponsored a trip to the coast and a trip to the Woodburn Outlet mall to acclimate the exchange students to the Pacific Northwest.




Opportunity beyond investing for OSIG

As a student-led organization that actively manages a $1.6 million equity portfolio, the Oregon State Investment Group (OSIG) has a substantial undertaking that provides an unprecedented experiential learning opportunity. In addition to the value of hands-on experience, members of OSIG now have more accolades to add to their already-impressive resumes.

Blake Hendricks accepts a check from D.A. Davidson & Co.'s Rich Fisher for OSIG's first place win in the Portfolio Competition.
Blake Hendricks accepts a check from D.A. Davidson & Co.’s Rich Fisher for OSIG’s first place win in the Portfolio Competition.

OSIG took first place in the annual D.A. Davidson & Co. Student Investment Program competition that ran from Sept. 1, 2013 –Aug. 31, 2014. Student teams were provided with $50,000 to invest, and the top-performing teams received a check on behalf of their college. With a gain of 38% and ending portfolio value of $69,014.35, OSIG finished above the 20 other university teams competing. In a ceremony that took place in Austin Hall Friday, Oct. 3, OSIG was awarded more than $8,000 from D.A. Davidson & Co.

On September 5, 2014, 10 members of OSIG, accompanied by Assistant Professor of Finance Inga Chira, went to Wall Street in New York City  and were directly immersed in the world of finance.


“The annual New York trip is one of the most valuable experiences for the students in OSIG. The opportunity to witness firsthand the environment and culture of the Wall Street firms is something that cannot simply be taught in the classroom,” said Blake Hendricks, DADCO Portfolio Manager.

OSIG in New York City Wall Street
Members of OSIG in NYC include Jessica Kim
Katie Merrill, Arun Varghese, Majed Abdelrasul, Jake Roselli,
Chase Norlin and Alex Markgraff
Van Wong
Chris Koenig
Blake Hendricks

The group learned the value of networking, and spent time with OSU alumni at influential firms such as PIMCO, Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan, Morgan Stanley, Barclays, BIDS and Fortress. Among those they met was Wesley Edens, a College of Business graduate. Edens is co-chairman of the board of directors of Fortress, and co-owner of the Milwaukie Bucks.

“Because of this trip, I was able to gain several in-person interviews for a summer internship which ultimately led to a summer internship with PIMCO and a full time position after graduation,” said Jessica Kim, OSIG President. “I believe very strongly that none of this would have been achievable without the Annual New York trip.”

Young Entrepreneur Business Week Helps Guide Future Business Leaders

Young Entrepreneurs Business Week at Oregon State University
A team of high school students take part in the Young Entrepreneurs Business Week at Oregon State University

Last week, 108 high school students representing 48 different high schools from Oregon, Washington, Texas and Canada visited the Oregon State campus and the College of Business for the annual Young Entrepreneurs Business Week program for a week of hands-on learning experiences.

Program participants spent their week being exposed to a curriculum designed to teach students that business can be fun and exciting.  During the program, each student is placed in a student-led company comprised of 8-10 students. The YEBW organizers say that they take the students’ geography, educational background, age, and other factors into account to create intentionally diverse teams of students, which are then guided by real executives from the business community who share their knowledge and expertise with the students throughout the week.

Once the students are placed with their teams and mentors, they create management teams, develop a mission statement, invent a product, and conduct actual operation of their own business by competing in business simulations.  However, the instruction goes far beyond the business curriculum.  Designed to broaden the practical skill sets of each student, YEBW incorporates professional speakers and other interactive learning exercises such as mock interviews, a professional etiquette dinner, networking events and plenty of social activities along the way. The goal of the curriculum is to provide students with the financial literacy, business fundamentals and confidence that they need to be self-sufficient and successful, priming the pipeline for the next generation of business and community leaders.

West Linn High School Junior Nathan Bergstrom, whose grandfather and father are both OSU alumni, said that although the curriculum is demanding, it’s more than worthwhile.

“This week has been intense, but also a lot of fun,” said Bergstrom. “Coming in, I don’t know that we necessarily understood what all goes into owning a successful business. The amount of planning it takes just to get started is a little surprising, but it’s also really rewarding and gives you a sense of satisfaction and accomplishment,” he said.

Young Entrepreneurs Business Week’s mission is to “build the next generation of business leaders” and was created because of increasing concern that Oregon’s youth of all educational and economic backgrounds were coming out of high school with no practical business knowledge, thus hindering their ability to innovate, create and produce the kinds of goods and services key to every community’s growth and success.  The YEBW organization was born in 2006 when a small group of entrepreneurs decided to fill the gap by drawing together curriculum developers, business professionals, educators and successful youth-focused program leaders to launch their educational program.