$10 million gift will establish Brierley Institute for Customer Engagement in SMU’s Cox School of Business

Marci Armstrong

$10 million gift will establish Brierley Institute for Customer Engagement in SMU’s Cox School of Business

Marci Armstrong, Associate Dean of Graduate Programs at SMU Cox - Albert Niemi, Dean of the SMU Cox School of Business - Harold (Hal) Brierley

Hal Brierley (right) with Cox Dean Albert Niemi and Cox Associate Dean Marci Armstrong.

The nation’s first academic institute devoted to the study of customer engagement will be based in SMU’s Cox School of Business thanks to a $10 million gift from Diane and Harold (Hal) Brierley.

A pioneer in database marketing and customer loyalty programs, Hal Brierley is perhaps best known as the only consultant for the launch of American Airlines’ AAdvantage program, the nation’s first frequent traveler program. The Brierley Institute for Customer Engagement will support a critical and growing business need: capturing customer attention in what Brierley has described as “a time-starved, social media-obsessed environment.”

The gift – among the largest in the history of the Cox School – will be formally announced at a ceremony on the SMU campus in the James M. Collins Executive Education Center at 4 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 14.

“It is an honor for SMU and the Cox School of Business to serve as home of the Brierley Institute for Customer Engagement,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “We are grateful for the Brierleys’ foresight and their generous gift to establish endowments and provide operational funding that will support curricular innovation, graduate scholarships and faculty leadership to address the issue of building and maintaining customer relationships.”

Hal Brierley

Hal Brierley

The ceremony will be followed by a 5 p.m. panel discussion, also in the Collins Center, focusing on customer engagement insights for the future. Panelists will include John Deighton, Baker Foundation Professor and Harold M. Brierley Professor Emeritus of Business Administration at Harvard Business School; Karen Katz, CEO & President of Neiman Marcus; Suzanne Rubin, former president of American Airlines AAdvantage program; Hal Brierley; and Marci Armstrong, SMU Cox associate dean of graduate programs. SMU Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Steven Currall will host the panel discussion.

“This gift will greatly enrich our marketing concentration, provide extra funding and create depth,” said Cox Dean Albert Niemi. “The Brierley name is magic in customer engagement. Hal will have an office here and serve as an executive-in-residence. He’ll be engaged in the classroom with our students. Both his gift and his presence will strengthen the program.”

“It’s more than serendipity when the right program comes to the right University,” said Currall. “Our existing course offerings within the Cox School are a strong foundation for the new Brierley Institute, and we look forward to partnerships with other disciplines across campus, which will multiply the Institute’s value to our students and faculty members.”

“I look forward to having Dallas and SMU viewed as a center of excellence in customer relationship management,” said Hal Brierley. “I’m pleased that SMU Cox has stepped up to create effective curricula to teach tomorrow’s marketers the techniques that are essential to design and manage successful customer loyalty programs. The Brierley Institute will take an active role in advancing the techniques employed by consumer brands for their current and future customer engagement efforts.”

> Read the full story from SMU News

September 12, 2016|News|

The Economist ranks Cox E.M.B.A. program in top 20 globally

SMU Cox School of BusinessThe SMU COX Executive M.B.A. is ranked at #18 in The Economist magazine’s first-ever Executive M.B.A. (E.M.B.A.) rankings survey. The results were released Friday, July 19, 2013. The Cox School of Business ranks in the top 20 out of 62 global business schools.

Tom Perkowski, assistant dean of the Cox Executive M.B.A. Program, credits its success to the leadership and vision of Cox Dean Al Niemi and Associate Dean of Graduate Programs Marci Armstrong.

“Their leadership, coupled with the Executive M.B.A. team’s high energy, customer service and constant pursuit of excellence has resulted in recruiting the highest quality Executive M.B.A. students,” says Perkowski. “These students take advantage of the increasing program resources and move into more successful roles after graduation.”

The business school data portion of the survey was conducted in winter 2013, and questionnaires were distributed to students and alumni of the last three graduating classes. The programs were ranked on two broad measures: personal development/educational experience and career development, with both categories equally weighted and each consisting of 27 subcategories. Those included such factors as the quality of students and faculty, student diversity, the percentage of students promoted after graduation, student and alumni networking potential and average alumni salary increases.

The Cox School is one of four Texas-based business schools included in this new Executive M.B.A. ranking. The Economist plans to make it a biennial rankings survey.

> Visit SMU’s Cox School of Business online at cox.smu.edu

July 29, 2013|News|

Cox School’s full-time M.B.A. program ranked #12 by Bloomberg Businessweek

SMU's Cox School of Business quadSMU’s Cox School of Business has announced that its full-time M.B.A. program has been ranked #12 among business schools in the United States by Bloomberg Businessweek – up from #18 in the publication’s last ranking (in 2008) of full-time programs.

To compile the ranking, Bloomberg Businessweek surveyed M.B.A. graduates from the class of 2010 and the recruiters who hire them. The M.B.A. surveys and the recruiter polls each contribute 45% to the final ranking, with an intellectual-capital ranking contributing the final 10%.

Cox graduates gave the faculty an A+ for teaching and an A for career services. Recruiters gave the 2010 grads an A+ for analytical skills and an A+ for general management skills.

This ranking solidifies the Cox School’s ranking among the top 15 for all of its graduate programs. Bloomberg Businessweek also ranks Cox #9 and #15 worldwide for its Executive M.B.A. and Professional M.B.A. programs, respectively.

The ranking comes on the heels of other good news for the Cox School: This fall, The Economist ranked the Cox full-time M.B.A. program #13 in the world for the international breadth of its alumni network. The magazine ranked Cox among the top 15 schools in the world for potential to network, alumni effectiveness and faculty quality.

Also this fall, the Financial Times ranked the Cox E.M.B.A. program #6 in the world for its entrepreneurship program and #3 in the world for finance.

“Our students and recruiters have spoken, and the Cox School has again received glowing recognition,” said Cox Dean Albert W. Niemi Jr. “Having a top-ranked M.B.A. program begins with an outstanding faculty and offering admission to students with strong academic and professional backgrounds. However, regardless of the continual ebb and flow of the rankings, the Cox School continues to place the greatest emphasis on providing a classroom environment that allows our students to learn not just from our tremendous faculty but also from each other.”

“We are so proud of our 2010 graduates and our Career Management Center for offering tireless, one-on-one guidance and counseling in a very difficult economy,” said Marci Armstrong, associate dean of graduate programs. “Our small, private-school environment offers a highly-personalized experience for students and recruiters, and we are honored to have earned this recognition.”

> Learn more about the survey and its methodology from SMU News

November 30, 2010|News|

Faculty in the News: Dec. 5, 2008

Frederick Schmidt, Spiritual Formation and Anglican Studies, Perkins School of Theology, discussed the split in the Episcopal Church with The Fort Worth Star-Telegram Dec. 4, 2008.

Cal Jillson, Political Science, Dedman College, talked about Houston Mayor Bill White’s chances for winning statewide office with The Houston Chronicle Nov. 30, 2008. He also discussed changes in Texas politics since George W. Bush’s years as governor with The Christian Science Monitor Nov. 25, 2008.

Robin Pinkley, American Airlines Center for Labor Relations and Conflict Resolution, Cox School of Business, talked about how to handle job offers that pay too little with The Wall Street Journal Dec. 3, 2008.

Robert Hunt, Global Theological Education, Perkins School of Theology, discussed the need to be both realistic and hopeful with The Dallas Morning News Dec. 2, 2008.

Willard Spiegelman, English, Dedman College, talked about what makes a painting a masterpiece with The Wall Street Journal Nov. 29, 2008.

Camille Kraeplin, Journalism, Meadows School of the Arts, talked about social media sites that cater to mothers and their babies with The Dallas Morning News Dec. 1, 2008.

Marci Armstrong, Graduate Programs, Cox School of Business, discusses the sharp increase in M.B.A. program applications during the current economic crisis with The Dallas Business Journal Dec. 1, 2008.

December 5, 2008|Faculty in the News|

Cox M.B.A. program makes BusinessWeek Top 20

SMU Cox School of Business quadThe full-time M.B.A. program in SMU’s Cox School of Business has been ranked among the top 20 in the United States by BusinessWeek, coming in at #18 in the nation in the magazine’s 2008 ranking. When surveyed, Cox students gave the faculty an A+ for teaching and an A for career services.

The ranking solidifies the Cox School’s position among the top 20 for all of its graduate programs. BusinessWeek ranks Cox #11 and #13 worldwide for its Executive M.B.A. and Professional M.B.A. programs, respectively. U.S. News & World Report currently ranks the Cox E.M.B.A. program #15, and the P.M.B.A. program #9 in the nation.

In September 2008, The Wall Street Journal ranked the Cox E.M.B.A. program #15 in the United States.

“Our students and recruiters have spoken, and the Cox School has received glowing recognition,” said Albert W. Niemi, Jr., dean of the Cox School. “Having top-ranked M.B.A. programs begins with an outstanding faculty and offering admission to students with strong academic and professional backgrounds. The classroom environment allows our students to learn not just from our tremendous faculty but also from each other. This collaborative atmosphere prepares them well for their careers.”

“We have always said that we will continue to make this the best M.B.A. experience possible and the rankings will follow,” said Marci Armstrong, associate dean for graduate programs. “We are delighted that our students and faculty are finally receiving the recognition they so richly deserve.”

“The Best B-Schools” is featured in the November 24, 2008 issue of BusinessWeek and online at www.businessweek.com/bschools.

Read more from SMU News

November 14, 2008|News|
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