CCOB provides access students need for career success
Story by Rick Vacek
Photos by Darryl Webb
GCU News Bureau
The Colangelo College of Business at Grand Canyon University continues to grow dramatically — it’s up to 2,714 students, almost double its enrollment of just two years ago. But it hasn’t lost its personal touch.
At a kickoff event Wednesday morning in GCU Arena, students heard plans for the 2015-16 school year from the college’s dean, Dr. Randy Gibb, and its faculty and student leaders. Students also were able to sign up for CCOB clubs, receive job-hunting tips from Career Services experts and find out more about internships.
But Gibb emphasized that this sort of direct communication is a daily CCOB feature.
“Our goal is to be the most accessible faculty in the country,” Gibb told the assembled students. “We don’t just have office hours every Wednesday from 1 to 2 p.m. Our faculty is here for you. I’m here for you.”
So, too, is Phoenix business icon Jerry Colangelo, for whom the college is named. Colangelo spoke to CCOB undergraduate and graduate students 15 times during the 2014-15 school year. He’ll be back for a session with MBA students at 5:30 p.m. Oct. 14, when he’ll be interviewed by longtime Phoenix sports broadcaster Jude LaCava.
Gibb also plans to host a monthly “Coffee with the Dean” from 8 to 9 a.m. on the second floor of the Student Union, starting Sept. 16.
Then there’s the Dean’s Speaker Series, which brings in business leaders from all over the country. It also begins Sept. 16, with Natalie Speers of Social Ally at 11:15 a.m. in Building 35 (CCOB), Room 100. Other scheduled speakers in the series are:
- Sept. 23: Jay Parry, president/CEO, Arizona Super Bowl committee, 11:15 a.m., Building 35, Room 100
- Oct. 9: Leigh Steinberg, sports agent, 11:15 a.m., Building 35, Room 100
- Oct. 21: Camelback Society (Christian entrepreneurs), 11:15 a.m., Building 35, Room 100
- Nov. 5: Dennis Green, former NFL coach, time and location to be determined
- Nov. 16: Raj Sisodia, co-author, Conscious Capitalism, 10 a.m., second floor of Student Union
The big push in CCOB is entrepreneurship, and the big news is the creation of the Canyon Angels, which will put entrepreneurs — students, prospective students, staff members and people from the local community — in touch with potential investors.
“The students will get real, practical experience,” said assistant professor Tim Kelley, assistant professor for entrepreneurship and economics.
Students can begin the process by joining GCU’s IDEA Club (Innovation, Development and Entrepreneurship Association). The first meeting of the school year is scheduled for 5 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 3, in Building 35, Room 100.
The IDEA Club offers the monthly “GCU Shark Tank” at which students can do product presentations and receive immediate feedback. Those presentations will culminate this spring in the Canyon Challenge, in which budding entrepreneurs will compete for at least $15,000.
Also new to CCOB is the hospitality management program, highlighted by the opening of the Grand Canyon University Hotel and anticipated unveiling this fall of Maryvale Golf Course’s renovation, which the University is managing. At both locations, students can get ground-floor, practical experience and see how such an operation works.
The hospitality management program includes golf management and tennis management. Gibb was at the U.S. Open tennis tournament recently to promote the tennis management program.
“To be a College of Business that is running businesses — that’s what it’s all about,” Gibb said.
CCOB students received information at the kickoff about four other clubs they can join besides IDEA: DECA (hospitality management), Programming, Accounting and Sports Business.
But the main focus of the college continues to be turning out bright, motivated students who are ready for the work force.
“We’re going to help you build a network and use our network to get a job,” Gibb told the students.
Contact Rick Vacek at 602-639-8203 or firstname.lastname@example.org.