Monthly Archives: March 2013

Hidden Treasures Spotlight: Len Rhodes

Blog by graduate student Janice Pearce

Hidden Treasures

Len RhodesThe College of Business at East Carolina is so proud to have Len Rhodes on our team!

Len Rhodes is Director of Institutional Research and a Teaching Instructor in the Department of Finance at East Carolina University.

Len is a graduate of East Carolina University with Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in accounting and Master of Business Administration degrees.  He spent 14 years in small business and entrepreneurship in eastern North Carolina.  Len joined East Carolina University in 2000 as a lecturer.  In 2004 he accepted the position of Assistant Dean for Graduate Programs and in 2009 joined the Office of Institutional Planning, Assessment, and Research.

Len has a passion for ECU and its students. He is committed to improving their lives by helping them make sound personal financial decisions.  Anja Hartung, a graduate of ECU’s College of Business MBA program and graduate assistant for Professor Rhodes, can personally attest to his dedication.  She comments, “I enjoyed working f or Len Rhodes. As employer, he challenged me with many projects that improved my skills and brought out the best Janicework ethic in me. As a mentor, he helped advise and guide me in the right direction in school and work. I thoroughly enjoyed working as a Graduate Assistant for Len in the College of Business Graduate Office.”

Len has coauthored textbooks, popular press books, and articles on personal finance.  He was instrumental in developing a national certification in personal finance for educators and he is a member of the Personal Financial Education Advisory Board for the Inceptia Institute and he is on the Board of Directors for the North Carolina Council for Economic Education.

The talent of the educators, like Professor Rhodes, at East Carolina’s College of Business is boundless.  We encourage you to learn more about those who are shaping our future business leaders on the ECU Faculty and Staff Page!

Don’t Label It. Experience It.

There is something special going on this semester in the College of Business and it feels like a challenge, the Honda Marketing Challenge that is! Those enrolled in the 2:00pm section of MKTG 4562, “Marketing Strategy”, have been selected to compete in a nationwide competition sponsored by American Honda Motor Company in conjunction with EdVenture Partners. The goal of the contest is to increase purchase consideration for the 2013 Honda Civic sedan among ECU students while simultaneously presenting Honda as a fun and youthful brand.

EdVenture Partners is an organization dedicated to developing innovative industry-education partnership programs. The objective of such programs is to provide hands-on, real-world experience to students in tandem with providing marketing solutions, and recruiting access at colleges and universities to clients. EdVenture Partners has designed and managed programs at over 1,000 campuses in North America and internationally. Find out more at One of their most popular programs is the “Honda Marketing Challenge” and East Carolina is one of 20 schools being represented in this year’s competition, each of which is competing for the opportunity to present their campaigns to actual Honda executives at the end of the semester.  Other competitors include teams from UConn, Michigan State, and Texas A&M, as well as various other universities across the nation. ECU is the only school from North Carolina that is competing, so let’s support our fellow Pirates in their efforts to win this competition!

2013 Honda Civic Sedan

The team of students, led by Dr. Christy Ashley, created the slogan “Don’t Label It. Experience It,” to portray the idea that the 2013 Honda Civic Sedan is something you have to personally experience to truly appreciate. It is also applicable to real-life because the slogan encourages individuals to rid themselves of preconceived notions and experience things for themselves instead of labeling the unfamiliar. The student leader of the team, Brittany Ingram, had this to say about the project, “The Honda Civic Marketing Challenge is an experience like no other. We are getting the chance to gain skills and valuable practice in our chosen field. Like the campaign slogan says, you can’t label this experience.”

As a member of the team I would have to wholeheartedly agree with Ms. Ingram’s sentiments.  I have learned invaluable lessons that I will carry with me for the rest of my life. There are seven different departments that make up the larger group as a whole and each department has their own objectives and agendas. Communicating effectively between groups has been critical to the project’s success and I have learned that accurate, timely information is imperative to the success of a group project.

I have helped create an integrated and consistent marketing campaign that spans several mediums and platforms. The campaign will incorporate social media, viral videos, guerrilla marketing, and teaser events leading up to a main event on campus.  In the weeks leading up to the event, the team will distribute balloons, cutie mandarin oranges and other swag.

All of these activities will lead up to the main event, titled The Honda Experience, onThursday, April 11 from 12:00 PM to 5:00 PM at the Bottom of College Hill. At this event, attendees will have the opportunity to sit inside the car, experience some of its signature features, receive giveaway items, listen to live music, eat free food, and simply unwind before the end of the semester. COME OUT AND SUPPORT YOUR FELLOW PIRATES!!!!

For more information, follow us on Twitter @HondaExperience

Thanks to Tobi Olofintuyi and Brittany Ingram for contributing to this post!

Student Spotlight: Neshe Bond-Folefac

Blog by COB student Shay Quigley

Have you ever stopped to consider how interesting the lives of students around you are?

Some students have had amazing internship experiences, some have inspirational trumphs, and some have made big plans to take effect upon graduation from East Carolina University.

It can be difficult to find these interesting people and strike up a conversation with them all, so the Student Spotlight will do the work for you.

This time, the Student Spotlight is shining on Neshe Bond-Folefac.

You may have seen her working in the Bate 3001 computer lab, or in any of her marketing or finance classes.

When the spotlight is on you, what is it that makes you interesting?

What makes you stand out?

The final class: The Job Interview 1001

You have an interview, so what do you do?

  • Did you research the company?
  • How about their clients, rivals, and options?
  • Did you check

Did you even research yourself? What do you have out there? You’re not only showing employers your resume now, but your Internet presence or “brand” that you have online. They say the first impression is the most important and you wouldn’t want it to be of you doing a keg stand, would you? Here’s something else to consider. Why do you dress up for an interview? I dress up to be my best and my mood is always great in a suit. Why would it be any different in a phone interview?

So you are as prepared as you’re going to be for the interview, now how should you prepare yourself for optimum confidence in crunch time?

DentsuThe day before make sure you have everything you need. DO NOT WAIT UNTIL THE DAY OF! This will allow you a better chance to get sleep and not be concerned about trivial chores in the morning. You should also grab a hair cut, or not. 😉

The day of the interview you better take a shower. I really don’t understand why people think they smell good when they take showers at night. You stink and no one cares enough to tell you, so I’m telling you now to take a morning shower. You just realized your shirt is wrinkled! Learn to iron your shirt, or hang it in the bathroom when you’re taking your morning shower. There’s another method to this that I use. Buy a no wrinkle shirt, preferably a solid neutral color and bring it with your regular shirts always. These come in handy in a pinch, although they do not have the same feel as a solid cotton shirt.

Play your favorite music to stimulate your brain and get you in the mood you want to achieve. Practicing deep breathing exercises are very helpful so that you are aware of any heavy breathing.

Make notes about the things you may want to discuss in the interview and look over them a few hours before the meeting, you will need some time to relax. Make sure you get to the interview early. Never be late, but showing up too early can also be intrusive. Ten minutes is a solid number.

The last topic on anyone’s mind is food. Eat breakfast! Your body requires energy to focus and make mental connections. I promise you this serving of eggs isn’t going to make you fat. Your body digests what it is used to much better than crashing it with a new diet that night and morning. Find what you normally eat and eat that, it will be the best for you, even if it’s a little bit inconvenient- might help you avoid tummy issues! The final issue is coffee. Your already going to be pumped, so watch out and don’t over do the coffee. This could leave saying things before you think them through-“verbal vomit”

Good luck!

Putting A Dollar Value On The ECU Business Degree

Written by graduate student Reka Reyna

Some degrees are more valued by employers than others. According to a variety of online sources one of the most effective degrees in today’s economy is a Business degree. “When businesses hire, they look for that broad range of basic skill sets that they can build on,” says Michael Brandt, chief operating officer of the recruiting software firm BrightMove, Inc. In fact, many employers think a bachelors or master’s degree in business is a good fit for a variety of positions.


That sentiment is backed up by the NACE Salary Survey ( that shows some impressive numbers for salaries paid to new business grads in 2012:

  • For accounting majors, the median salary was $47,800 in 2012. Top employers for accounting grads included professional, scientific, and technical services (including accounting) firms, but wholesale employers offered top pay—$51,500 on average.
  • Business administration/management majors received a median pay of $49,200. Employers in the finance and insurance industries reported the largest number of new grad entrants, with an average starting salary of $51,300. Highest pay, however, went to business administration grads who landed jobs in the finance and insurance industry; employers in this industry provided these grads with an average salary of $63,900.
  • Economics graduates earned one of the highest starting salaries. Their median starting salary stood at $54,800 in 2012. They found the largest number of opportunities with finance and insurance employers; their highest starting salary—$57,000—also came from these employers. Moreover, economics grads who landed jobs as financial managers in the finance/insurance industry saw their average salary top out at $64,000.
  • Starting salaries for finance majors in 2012 was $49,700. Although their overall starting salary is lower than that of economics graduates, those who took jobs as financial managers outpaced their counterparts, earning an average starting salary of $66,000.
  • There is also positive news for marketing majors: their median salary was $49,600 in 2012.


These numbers show starting salaries of graduates with Bachelor’s degrees in Business. These figures are higher for Master’s degree holders.  Not too bad in a struggling economy!

Business handshake

Beside great starting salaries, a business degree also offers great flexibility; there are many fields that are open to business graduates. Besides the traditional finance and accounting positions, there are some less obvious industries that could be a great fit for those with a business education: The following industries are regularly hiring business grads.

  • Department of Defense
  • Fashion
  • Hospitality
  • Retail
  • Public Relations
  • Social Media Marketing
  • Event Planning
  • And the list goes on and on

A business degree provides graduates with a great foundation that allows them many choices in today’s economy. ECU College of Business’s Leadership and Professional Development program enhances this foundation with advanced courses that prepare undergraduate students for the real business world. COB students also create an ePortfolio that showcases their personal leadership development and their achievements, and by the time they graduate, students have tangible evidence of their accomplishments in a professional, multidimensional format that provides crucial information to potential employers.

So ECU COB business students, rejoice! The business degree you are working on today will bring amazing opportunities tomorrow!


Find The Pirates Game!

PiratePirates are everywhere, purple and gold! We celebrate pirates and sometimes emulate them. You’re cheering them on in the stands; they’re on your shirts, your mugs, and everywhere else in between. ARGH! ECU Pirates can spot fellow pirates, pirate history, or genuine pirate paraphernalia. We have special instinctual vision for pirate finding.


Lets play a game. Every time you see a pirate or anything that reminds you of a pirate tweet it out to @ECUCOB #pirates or post it to Facebook . We want to hear about your spring break journey next week, so please share with us and your other fellow pirates. We would love to see some underwater photography, extra cool pictures will be specially rewarded! Remember to play over break and you can win a COB T-shirt.

Meet Thomas Frank: “College Info Geek” Blogger, Doer of the Impossible

College can be stressful.

Ultimately, though, we all just want to make our time here awesome.



Thomas Frank, College Info Geek creator and blogger, knows all about awesome.

Despite his packed schedule, Thomas agreed to answer a few questions for the inquiring minds at ECU’s College of Business.

SQ: Where did the idea to create College Info Geek come from?

TF: Like the ancient Chinese philosophers did before me, I sought the wisdom of the gods by looking at the cracks in turtle shells. Where the Chinese found the symbols that would become kanji, I was presented with a message that said, “Start a blog about college and don’t write about your anime figurines.”

Ok, maybe that’s not true. All good stories deserve embellishment, right? The real story is that I actually never intended to start my own blog. When I was a freshman, I was a huge fan of HackCollege. This was back when Kelly Sutton – the founder of the site – was still running things, and I wanted to be just like him.

Well, my opportunity presented itself near the end of said freshman year. HackCollege announced that they were looking for writers, and that any student could send in their resume and a finished article to be considered. Boom. Tom’s hands hit plastic keys at lightning speed and HackCollege receives the best application ever a few hours later.

The KGB must have blackmailed them or something, though, because I got rejected. Yep. No writing on HackCollege for me. No being the next Kelly Sutton. Great dishonor.

However, I still had that guest post on my computer, and I didn’t want it to go to waste. I had been designing websites since high school, so I figured I could start my own blog. And that’s how College Info Geek came into being!

Read more

Student Spotlight: Neshe Bond-Folefac

Have you ever stopped to consider how interesting the lives of students around you are?

Some students have had amazing internship experiences, some have inspirational trumphs, and some have made big plans to take effect upon graduation from East Carolina University.

It can be difficult to find these interesting people and strike up a conversation with them all, so the Student Spotlight will do the work for you.

This time, the Student Spotlight is shining on Neshe Bond-Folefac.

You may have seen her working in the Bate 3001 computer lab, or in any of her marketing or finance classes.

When the spotlight is on you, what is it that makes you interesting?

What makes you stand out?