Jeff Boichuk / McIntire

Everyone knows, “It’s not what you know. It’s who you know.”

My dream is to develop a course that equips students with the knowledge and skills they need to establish and build fulfilling, sustainable, and mutually beneficial relationships with business professionals who inspire my students and have a proclivity for mentorship.

I made substantial progress toward achieving my dream this semester.

On April 12, 2016, my students and I received rave reviews as we hosted a group of 103 people at the Boar’s Head Inn for the inaugural Impact Gala , an event designed to celebrate mentorship and foster relationship growth between my students and “ superbosses.”

In order to prepare my students for Impact as well as the you-are-who-you-know business world they’ll soon be entering, I exposed them to a robust curriculum related to the discipline of sales.

However, despite my best intentions, the road to Impact was anything but linear. I spent countless hours crafting a detailed syllabus and countless more hours sending emails throughout the semester. What I learned is that most of this time went to waste.

The course objectives I wish to accomplish require face-to-face interaction before my course even begins. Through a Teaching Analysis Poll , coordinated by UVA’s Center for Teaching Excellence, my students voiced that they wish they knew about Impact in the fall semester so they could have been more well prepared.

I wish to be named a Mead Honored Faculty so I have the opportunity to connect with my students before my course begins again in January of 2017.

Comprised of Commerce students concentrating in Marketing and Management, my next cohort of students will join the McIntire School of Commerce in the fall 2016 semester. I want to host dinners for groups of four or five students throughout the fall. During these dinners, I want to build rapport with my future students, introduce them to the objectives of my course, and set them on a more linear path to success.

This opportunity to develop relationships with my students over a series of dinners in the fall will not only allow me to become a friend and mentor of my students, it will also help me become a better teacher. In turn, my students will be in a better position to establish and build relationships with business professionals who inspire my students and have a proclivity for mentorship.

I am grateful for this opportunity to propose my Dream Idea to the Committee, and I do not think the opportunity to receive this funding could come at a better time. Impact 2016 was a resounding success, and I expect Impact 2017 to be exponentially better if I get the chance to connect with my students in the fall.

Proposed Budget:

  • Dinners for 4-5 students plus one professor x 10 meetings x $30: $1,650
  • Refreshments for Impact Gala: $1,350 

TOTAL $3,000