• Three Professors Celebrate 30 Years at Suffolk

12/2/2009

When they arrived Reagan was not yet president, but three professors celebrating 30 years on the faculty had already helped man get to the moon, written a popular book about life after death, and taught business from Bangkok to Britain.

Strategy and International Business Professor Michael Arthur said he appreciates the good home he’s found for his scholarship at Suffolk. Arthur is a career studies expert who earned his master’s and doctorate in management at Cranfield University in his native England. The evolution of careers is the focus of his four books and an instrument he helped create for workers to explore their skills and work desires. In 2006, Arthur was recognized with a lifetime achievement award in interdisciplinary career studies by the Academy of Management. His scholarship blossomed at Suffolk: “Elsewhere, it would have been a different kind of journey. “You're on a shorter leash in terms of the impact you have and the people you are expected to impress.”

Warren Briggs, a professor of Information Systems and Operations Management, cut his academic teeth as an undergraduate at MIT during the heady days of the Apollo Space Program. He earned an MBA at Harvard and a doctorate at MIT in Operation Research and Computer Applications.When Briggs joined the business faculty, Suffolk was “more entrepreneurial than it is now.” Some peers had more resources and procedural hurdles.“We hustled and did things without approvals,” acting like a startup. Now that it has matured, he said the challenge is to keep the entrepreneurial spirit burning brightly.“It’s always a fear in any institution, how to maintain the innovation and initiative that got us here,” he said. Briggs, who has also donated more than $100,000 to the school, still loves to teach. “It’s been a good ride,” he said.

Arriving in 1979, David Wheeler, now an associate professor of marketing, had published “Journey to the Other Side,” about people who were revived after being clinically dead, and he had already taught at the Bernard S. Baruch School of Business, the University of Houston, and the University of North Dakota. Since Wheeler left his El Camino with the gun rack back in the Longhorn state, where he earned three degrees at Texas Tech University, he has kept moving. He has taught in Thailand and Yugoslavia and completed marketing research in China, Japan and several Arab countries. Between recent research on patent reform and developing online customer trust, there is the screenplay on pet life after death to polish. And Suffolk still appeals after 30 years: “I like the place and I enjoy the heck out of the students.”

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