Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Business School Connection

One of the more interesting projects I've been given in these past three weeks is to maintain our Business School Connection, a concept that was launched last year by a fellow through the University of Chicago Graduate School. The idea is very simple: why not enlist business schools to use their expertise on running businesses and taking that expertise to the realm of non-profits. After all, non-profits are pretty much businesses, just as their name indicates, not-for-profit. I think the idea is fantastic. I know there is a huge movement for corporations throughout the globe to contribute more to the public interest. There are even people who have an expertise in corporate social responsibility who's job it is to make sure that corporations are being socially responsible by being ecologically friendly, by treating their workers fairly, by contributing to a cause or a charity. Back in May, when I attended the Tutor/Mentor Conference at Northwestern Law School, I sat in on a seminar about creating ties between corporations and non-profits such as Big Brothers/Big Sisters, or Cabrini Connections.
Why not take this a step further? Why not instill this idea of contributing to the public interest while business execs are in business school? This is the whole idea of business school connection so that business schools themselves can have connections to non-profits. Both institutions will benefit in the long-run and it is my belief that CEO's who have worked with non-profits who are understaffed and underfunded while they were still in school will make better CEO's when they are the leaders of Fortune 500 companies.
My boss, Dan Bassill has made an excellent point about many of the nation's top business schools being near low-income areas. For example, University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business is near West Philadelphia, University of Chicago is on the Southside of Chicago, Stanford business school is near East Palo Alto. My alma mater, Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Business has consistently been named one of the top business schools in the world and it is also fairly close to low income areas. I am very excited about maintaining and creating new connections with business schools and if anyone has any possible contacts, please let me know.
There are two forums for our business school connection. One is in our Tutor/Mentor Connection website at:
another is our business school wiki at:
I hope everyone thinks about this idea and if anyone would like to contribute anything, please do!

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