The Paul Merage School of Business - Dean's Quarterly - Fall 2009
Dean Andy Policano

In Perspective

As the economy fluctuates and businesses adapt to the new environment, the search for employment has become increasingly competitive. Only those who are the most prepared and who have positioned themselves well will succeed and thrive. The good news is, according to the latest 2009 employment results, Merage School MBAs are quite prepared for the challenge.
    Tom Kozicki, the executive director of the Merage School MBA Career Center, has shared preliminary placement results that show our employment stats are surpassing those of the top twenty business schools in the nation. The fact that more than 90 percent of our Full-Time MBA class have accepted full-time positions illustrates how well prepared our students are to enter the work force and take on leadership roles.
     Our placement results clearly indicate the business community recognizes the fact that our graduates bring the skills necessary to help their businesses sustain profitable, long-term growth. The Merage School's functional strengths in operations, information technology, corporate finance and marketing, combined with the four pillars underlying our strategies – innovation, analytics, information technology and collaborative execution – have provided successful career paths for our Merage School graduates. According to BusinessWeek, Merage School graduates rank among the top 25 nationally in terms of financial remuneration 10 years after graduation.
     Our focus on innovation within a highly personalized program has resulted in substantial benefits for our students and for the Merage School as a whole. Today we are attracting some of the top talent in the world as we distinguish ourselves among the very best global research-based business schools.

Dean Andy Policano Signature

Health Care Industry Leaders Compare Formulas for Reform
"Comparing new interventions with what is being used currently is a very good first step toward getting things going," according to Sheldon Greenfield, MD, the Donald Bren Professor of Medicine and Executive Director of the Health Policy Research Institute at UC Irvine.
Greenfield was first to speak at the Center for Health Care Management and Policy conference,
Comparative Effectiveness: Lessons from Abroad, held October 1.
       Under the direction of Paul J. Feldstein, PhD, professor and Robert Gumbiner Chair of Health Care Management, the conference was presented by the Merage School's Center for Health Care Management and Policy as part of its ongoing mission to explore and disseminate information on one of today's most important issues.

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The Power of Alumni
The Power of Alumni Connections

Even though Jeff Pratt, '99, and Tim Jackman, '99, were classmates in the Merage School's EMBA program more than a decade ago, the connection they made follows them to this day and illustrates the power of the Merage Network.
      Jackman is now chief of police for the Santa Monica Police Department and Pratt heads strategic development forSpeedTrack, Inc., a leading developer of next-generation faceted search and navigation technologies. While at first glance it may seem an unlikely partnership, Jackman and Pratt's continued collaboration has made a definite impact on both of them.

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MBA Programs Information Sessions invite prospective students for full-time, fully employed and executive MBA programs starting in both spring and fall of 2010.
Strategic Issues in Management Series
OCTOBER 29, 2009
NOVEMBER 12, 2009
FEBRUARY 25, 2010
BUILDING EFFECTIVE TEAMS with Professor Kristin Behfar
MARCH 18, 2010
APRIL 8, 2010
APRIL 15, 2010
Distinguished Speakers Series
NOVEMBER 5, 2009
Neel Grover
President and Chief Executive Officer,
JANUARY 21, 2010
Sue Swenson
President and Chief Executive Officer, Sage Software
MARCH 4, 2010
Mike Mussallem
Chairman and CEO, Edwards Lifesciences
MAY 6, 2010
John Krafcik
President and CEO, Hyundai Motor America
NOVEMBER 16, 2009
Center for Investment and Wealth Management Luncheon Series New Investment Realities in the Current Challenging Environment with Rob Arnott, CEO and Founder of Research Affiliates, Moderated by Chuck Martin, Chairman/CEO, Mont Pelerin Capital LLC
JANUARY 20, 2010
Center for Real Estate Breakfast Series
Pacific Club, Newport Beach
CFA Institute Partnership

CFA Institute Partnership Gives Merage Students an Advantage

The Paul Merage School of Business has been selected by the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Institute as CFA Program Partner, a designation held by only one other educational institution in the western United States and only 103 educational institutions worldwide. As a CFA Program Partner, the Merage School will coordinate curriculum with the association's Chartered Financial Analyst exam, a rigorous graduate-level certification program, and the School will have access to the association's entire library of research and publications.
      "As a result of this partnership, our students will benefit from one of the business world's most influential professional organizations," said Todd Richey, a lecturer at the Merage School's Center for Investment and Wealth Management, who was instrumental in establishing the partnership. "The CFA certification has always been viewed as the gold standard," Richey continued. "This shows that our students with a finance focus will be well prepared when they graduate and are out looking for a job. For the School, it means we can attract high quality MBA students."
      The CFA Institute administers the Chartered Financial Analyst exam, a demanding, three-level examination, which requires investment professionals to devote hundreds of hours to self-study. Only about half of the individuals who take the test pass it and receive their CFA certification.
      Bob McLean, CFA, head of university relations for the CFA Institute, worked closely with Richey during the partnership talks. He said the arrangement is a credit to the Merage School.
      "Becoming a CFA Program Partner demonstrates UC Irvine's commitment to maintaining high standards in professional education and ethics to potential students and employers," McLean said. "As a CFA Program Partner, UC Irvine joins a small number of high-profile institutions around the world."

Merage School Celebrates Partnership with Experian at Room Dedication
Groundbreaking Gift Adds to Merage School Building Campaign

Merage School Building Campaign On September 10, the Merage School commemorated a groundbreaking gift from Experian, the global information services company, with the dedication of two executive classrooms in the existing Merage School building. Experian's gift of $550,000 is being applied toward the new building campaign just recently underway, and two executive classrooms in that structure will be named in Experian's honor once it is complete.

      "Experian believes that education is the cornerstone of success, and investing in our future business leaders is the responsibility of organizations and communities alike," said Chris Callero, president and chief operating officer of Experian. " We are honored to be in a position to present this gift to the Merage School and be a part of its future."
      More than a dozen Merage School alumni currently employed at Experian were on hand to witness the dedication along with Callero, President Allen Anderson, and Group Presidents Ty Taylor and Mike DeVico.
Chief Operating Officer Chris Callero with Dean Andy Policano

Experian President and Chief Operating Officer Chris Callero with Dean Andy Policano at the dedication ceremony on September 10, 2009.
      " We have many strong ties with Experian which make this gift so gratifying," said Dean Andy Policano. "Chris Callero is an active and valued member of our Dean's Advisory Board and we have a substantial and growing presence of Merage alumni at Experian, one of Orange County's most innovative and important companies."
      A plaque installed in each of the executive classrooms reads, "Within this classroom, our students and faculty enjoy a superior learning environment made possible by the commitment and dedication of one of Orange County's most generous corporate citizens. We gratefully acknowledge Chris Callero and the leadership of Experian for their visionary gift in support of this state-of-the-art facility."
      The proposed new Merage School facility is the first new business school building to be built since 1989. Since news of the project was first presented to the business community in January 2009, the Merage School has received pledges totaling $1.5 million. CEO Neel CEO Neel Grover Leads Distinguished Speaker Series at The Paul Merage School of Business

The Distinguished Speaker Series for 2009-10 kicks off on November 5 with CEO and President Neel Grover as the featured guest. Hosted by the Center for Leadership and Team Development, the event will take place in the UC Irvine Student Center from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.
     Other presenters featured in the 2009-10 Distinguished Speaker Series lineup include:
  • Sue Swenson, President and CEO of Sage Software – January 21, 2010
  • Mike Mussallem, Chairman and CEO of Edwards Lifesciences – March 4, 2010
  • John Krafcik, President and CEO of Hyundai Motor America – May 6, 2010
      The Distinguished Speaker Series highlights the leadership perspectives, ethical frameworks, decisionmaking processes and insights of top business leaders in the industry. The event gathers approximately 350 corporate professionals, community leaders, MBA students, faculty members and campus staff. The 2009-10 Distinguished Speaker Series is sponsored by Bingham McCutchen LLP, Capital Group Companies, PricewaterhouseCoopers and Wells Fargo.
      General admission for Distinguished Speaker Series events is $50. Formore information or to register online visit

Merage on the Move

Shaheen Husain, Executive Director
Shaheen Husain, Executive Director, Corporate Relations, and Professor Emile Pilafidis, Instructor and Program Coordinator

Winners Everywhere You Look

What do Experian, Marriott International, PAAMCO, Taco Bell Corporation and Volcom have in common? They are all participants in the Merage School's Fall 2009 Experiential Learning Practicum, which delivers MBA-level business expertise and consulting services to local companies and organizations.
      Each of the companies invited to participate in this year's program has identified a critical business issue needing attention. The companies were then matched with an MBA consultant team that will spend the next 10 weeks exploring solutions. Shaheen Husain, Executive Director of Corporate Relations, and Professor Emile Pilafidis, Instructor and Program Coordinator, manage this process with every company.
      "This program makes winners out of everyone involved," said Gary Lindblad, assistant dean of the Full Time MBA Program. "Our MBA students benefit from exposure to and responsibility for managing real-life business issues. Participating companies benefit from the fresh ideas and perspectives these dynamic student teams provide."Experiential Learning Program
      Entering its seventh year, the Experiential Learning Program has a track record of proven success. The winning formula involves several key elements: the participation of top businesses (often through their membership as a Merage School Corporate Partner), a team of exceptional Merage School MBAs, and a faculty technical advisor who provides valuable suggestions in terms of conceptual frameworks, research sources and methodology. The secret ingredient is the addition of an executive coach who provides the team with business advice. More often than not, the executive coach is a Merage School alum or Dean's Leadership Circle member. This quarter's combination of corporations, faculty, executives and students is quite remarkable. Visit to read more details.

Fully Employed MBAs Making Headlines

The Fully Employed MBA Class of 2012 boasts the largest class size since the program was expanded in 2003. Applications were the second highest in the program's history with an increase in both the number of women enrolled in the program and the percentage of international students.
      "The caliber of students we are attracting is more impressive every year. This FEMBA class demonstrated an increase in several categories, including a 10 point increase in GMAT scores," said Tony Hansford, assistant dean of the Fully Employed MBA Program.
      The Merage School's Fully Employed MBA program draws students from companies including: Allergan, Aramark, Black & Decker, Boeing, Broadcom, Edwards Lifesciences, Experian, Fluor, GlaxoSmithKline, Hitachi Consulting, Kaiser Permanente, Merrill Lynch, MetLife, Nestle, PIMCO, Skyworks, The Walt Disney Company, Verizon Wireless, and Wells Fargo.

Marangell Answers the Call

Barbra Marangell has joined the Fully Employed MBA Office as interim director until the position is filled. In this temporary position, Marangell will facilitate FEMBA Marketing and Recruitment activities. Marangell is a Merage School alumna (FEMBA '08) with more than 10 years of professional experience as a news editor, communications specialist and marketing communication manager.

New Research, Books & Ideas

Professor Imran Professor Imran Currim’s research titled, Multi-stage purchase decision models: Accommodating response heterogeneity, common demand shocks, and endogeneity using disaggregate data, has been accepted by the International Journal of Research in Marketing. His paper, Amalgamation of Partitions from Multiple Segmentation Bases: A Comparison of Non-Model- Based and Model-Based Methods, has been accepted by the European Journal of Operational Research.
Professor Dennis AignerThe Seeds of Salvation, an article written by Professor Dennis Aigner, was published in the July 2009 edition of the Milken Institute Review. Aigner also received a $25,000 UC MEXUS grant for Research on Sustainability and Competitiveness in Mexico. He will be conducting the research with Professor Antonio Lloret of the business school at Instituto Tecnologico Autonomo de Mexico in Mexico City beginning October 1, 2009 through March 31, 2010.
Professor Sanjeev DewanInformation Systems Research has accepted a paper by Professor Sanjeev Dewan titled, Information Technology and Firm Boundaries: Impact on Firm Risk and Return Performance.

Professor Mary Gilly'sProfessor Mary Gilly's research, Employees as Internal Audience: How Advertising Affects Employees' Customer Focus, will be published in the Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science.
Professor Ken Kraemer'sCommunications of the ACM will publish two of Professor Ken Kraemer's studies: Who Captures Value in a Global Innovation Network? The Case of Apple's iPod and One Laptop Per Child: Vision vs. Reality. Professor Kraemer's study, Who profits from innovation in global value chains? A study of iPods and notebook PCs, has been accepted by Industrial and Corporate Change.

Professor Connie Pechmann Keynotes Chinese BusinessSchool Conference

Professor Connie PechmannMerage School marketing area chair, Professor Connie Pechmann, was invited to the Antai Management School at Shanghai Jiao Tong University inShanghai, China, where she was featured as the keynote speaker at the annual conference of Chinese business school deans and marketing department chairs.
      Pechmann spoke about the impact of tobacco research on public policy, and the next day was invited to give a second talk to the schools' PhD students and faculty.
      Pechmann has received nearly $1.5 million in grants to study antismoking advertising and adolescents,and assists the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy in overseeing a federally funded, multi-year, billion dollar anti-drug advertising campaign. She conducts controlled experiments to study the effects of advertising on consumers, focusing on if, and how, the federal government should regulate controversial advertising forms. Pechmann has received six grants from the California Tobacco-Related Disease Research Program to study the impact of cigarette and anti-smoking advertising on youths, including tobacco placements in movies and television programs, and the showing of anti-smoking public service announcements before movies.
      Learn more about Professor Pechmann and her research at

2009 "Merageville" Alumni Reunion

Merageville  Alumni Reunion
Vincent Hamamoto ‘99, and Tim Jackman ‘99 (shown here with his wife Lisa) were among the Merage School alumni who returned to campus to reunite with classmates during "Merageville," the 2009 reunion held on Saturday, September 12, 2009.

Strategic Issues in Management Series Centers on Today's Information Needs
The Merage School's Strategic Issues in Management Series (SIMS) is a group of half-day seminars geared toward mid- to senior-level managers and executives who want to sharpen their business acumen and enhance their careers.
      Led by world-class faculty from the Merage School, the Strategic Issues in Management seminars tackle today's most pressing issues. Leadership, strategic decision-making and organizational management are hot topics this year. Each seminar is held on campusin the Merage School's executive classrooms using the latest teaching technology. A certificate of completion is given to participants who attend any four (4) sessions.
      "Fundamentally, each year we identify critical management issues and what people most want to hear or learn about, and then we design our program around those topics," said Dr. Newt Margulies, professor emeritus of Organizational Behavior and associate dean of the Merage School's Executive Education program. "The unique environment in which we conduct these seminars allows for peer-topeer interaction as well as faculty facilitation. The learning experience is unlike any other offering value that can be applied at work the very next day."
      Visit for Merage School Alumni and Friends discount information.
Upcoming SIMS seminars include:
October 29, 2009
Professor David Blake
November 12, 2009
Professor Phil Bromiley
February 25, 2010
Professor Kristin Behfar
March 18, 2010
Professor Todd Richey
April 8, 2010
Professor Vijay Gurbaxani
April 15, 2010
Professor Lisa Barron

It's a Small World After All

Maintaining a global connection and creating a multi-cultural learning experience are key aspects of the MBA program for Merage School students. Leveraging information technology, especially given the School's IT focus, allows students virtual access to classrooms on campus as well as those in locations around the globe.It's a Small World After All
     Over the past year, the Merage School has installed two video teleconferencing-equipped facilities which have been used in a myriad of instructional contexts. As part of an International Real Estate class, for example, nearly two-thirds of the sessions involved students interacting with faculty and experts located in different countries. In one instance, utilizing the University of California's multi-point bridge, the Merage School joined a speaker in Beijing, a Real Estate Law instructor from the University of Wisconsin, and a classroom of students enrolled in Irvine. Further leveraging the international reach of technology, professors gave assignments requiring student groups to meet with experts from other countries via video teleconferencing.
     Technology-enhanced courses supplement the School's pioneering work streaming live TA sessions to all students in three of its four MBA programs. Students from any remote location are able to participate in discussions and interact with professors as if they were in the classroom. All larger classrooms are equipped to record and stream live, full-motion video, audio and a computer screen or whiteboard to any remote location via the Internet. All combined, technology is bringing the Merge School students to the world, and the world to them.

Continued from top of the page
The Power of Connections
      Introduced to SpeedTrack through mutual friend and classmate, Angela Gribble, EMBA '99, Jackman and Pratt would create a bond that changed the course of their careers. Pratt would choose to join the fledgling software company, while Jackman would inspire the company to develop software products designed for law enforcement.
      Power of Connections"When I met Miles Yano, the co-founder, chairman and CEO of the fledgling SpeedTrack, I was impressed with the technology they had developed and patented, but most impressed by the founders of the company who are creative people with real vision and imagination, with a purpose to effect change in the world by improving access to information," said Pratt.
      SpeedTrack's Guided Information Access Platform (GIA™), a unique information management technology, providesa novel approach to storage, access, and analysis of data (think GPS for information). It was developed with the intention of removing the barriers that make data integration, search, and analysis difficult and complex. Both Jackman and Pratt were impressed by the technology, but for very different reasons. Pratt saw a career opportunity that would allow him to pursue his entrepreneurial aspirations; Jackman saw a technology that would revolutionize risk management in law enforcement.
      Shortly after completing the EMBA program, Pratt resigned from his position as senior vice president and directorof Risk Management for Westcorp. In April 2000, he partnered with Yano and the inventor and co-founder of SpeedTrack, Jerzy Lewak, PhD, and began demonstrating the innovative new software technology the company was beta testing.
      "It occurred to me that police departments have a wealth of data and a need to gain information or answers fromtheir data quickly and intuitively," said Pratt. "So, I called Tim and asked if I could show him a demo."
      Jackman, at the time, was commanding Internal Affairs for the Long Beach Police Department. The Los AngelesCounty Grand Jury was investigating his department for allegations of excessive force and other civil rights violations, along with the Los Angeles Police Department, which was being investigated by a number of outside agencies at the time for the Rampart scandal.
      "LAPD had spent a lot of money on a software project that they were unable to get to work properly," said Tim. "Iwas able to suggest an idea to Jeff about a form of early intervention I was interested in. Essentially, I wanted a piece of predicative software that would give me an indication that an officer may be getting in trouble so that the department could intervene in some manner to prevent a serious case of misconduct."
Jeff Pratt, EMBA ‘99
Jeff Pratt, EMBA ‘99

      Pratt and Jackman immediately saw the value in applying GIA to police data, which would allow access to valuable informationwithout having to rely on specially trained IT staff to query databases, create reports and solve crimes.
      "It was funny because the software they showed me was just a database full of real estate information in Huntington Beach," said Jackman. "However, it demonstrated that the tool they were using to access the data was incredibly powerful and very fast."
      The software SpeedTrack developed for Jackman is called ERMS (Employee Risk Management System). "It's extraordinary," commented Jackman. "I think it is one of the most cutting edge pieces of software to ever be developed for police departments and will have a tremendous future."
      The first SpeedTrack product for the Long Beach Police Department was developed and implemented in 2002/03.Pratt would develop additional products as a result of Jackman's involvement. Their collaboration spawned a series of new software applications that not only captured the niche market of law enforcement, but expanded SpeedTrack's offerings to the insurance and real estate title industries.
Tim Jackman, EMBA ‘99
Tim Jackman, EMBA ‘99
 "Tim is a multi-dimensional guy with a great sense of humor and a real appreciation for imagination and innovation.He loves to explore and apply new approaches to solving problems," said Pratt. "Tim is a good friend and continues to be a source of ideas for new products and development for our Law Enforcement products."
      "Jeff is funny, smart, engaged and very serious about his work. He is – and this is true of most of my classmates – almost intuitively attuned to what goes on around him. He speaks well, is earnest and he is easily trusted," said Jackman.
      Today SpeedTrack's public safety products are endorsed by Joe Brann, the founding director of the office for Community Oriented Policing (COPS) in the US Department of Justice, and used by police departments in the United States and Canada. In addition, the GIA platform supports business intelligence and enterprise search applications for customers in the Title and Insurance industries, and SpeedTrack's patents are licensed by several of the major GPS navigation manufacturers.
      In 2006, Jackman left Long Beach to become the Chief of Police for the Santa Monica Police Department, leaving his job as Deputy Chief of the Long Beach Police Department where he had worked for nearly 24 years.
      While Jeff Pratt and Tim Jackman have extended their partnership far beyond their days as Executive MBA students,the Merage School remains at the heart of their connection as it does with so many students throughout the nation and beyond.

Continued from top of the page
Health Care Reform
      "Our goal is to serve as a catalyst, drawing together industry leaders and public representatives for a thoughtful discussion on Comparative Effectiveness, a key issue and possibly the foundation of national health care reform,"said Feldstein.
Health Care Reform
What is Comparative Effectiveness? Quite simply it's the comparison of two or more treatments for a given condition in which studies may compare similar treatments or analyze different approaches to determine the best intervention. Other considerations may include analysis of relative medical benefits and the risk of each option, or may weigh both the costs and the benefits. Most frequently the key issue is determining which specific types of patients would benefit most from which types of interventions, and which is most cost effective.
     Clear among all participants was that cost effectiveness must factor into any sort of health reform or comparative analysis. Based on presentations at this conference, all facets of the healthcare industry seem to agree that Comparative Effectiveness must be a part of the formula for successful health care reform in the United States.

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