Greetings from Anne Obst
External Relations Coordinator


Anne ObstIt probably doesn't matter if you're a recent graduate, or you earned your degree last century, Fall means fresh beginnings, meeting new classmates, renewing old friendships, re-establishing study routines, and the sights and smells of learning — remember how wonderful a new box of crayons smelled? 

Sixty-nine new MA-HRIR students arrived on campus in late August to begin their journey toward a degree from one of the most highly-regarded Masters' programs in the country. There were no crayons in their orientation packets, but one of the important messages they heard was that they will soon be joining a highly-engaged and caring alumni community. 

From serving on the CHRLS Alumni Association Board of Directors, to planning mini-reunions of their classmates, to welcoming new students during orientation week, to serving as mentors, speakers, coaches and more, alumni of the HRIR program are staying connected with the Carlson School, making a difference by sharing their time and talents.

This bi-monthly alumni newsletter will aim to highlight these alumni connections; showcase our outstanding faculty, students, and staff; offer opportunities to engage, or re-engage, with the HRIR program, the Carlson School and the larger University community; and hopefully help build an even stronger and more engaged alumni community.

Happy Fall!

Alumni News

Thank You!

Six members of the CHRLS Alumni Association Board of Directors are stepping down this fall as their three-year terms come to an end:

  • Dave Dahlgren, '08 MA-HRIR
  • Sue Hoffman, '82 MA-IR
  • Michelle Kurtz, '09 MA-HRIR
  • Bethany Labuz, '06 MA-HRIR
  • Andrew Powers, '09 MA-HRIR
  • Kathy Smith, '93 MA-IR

Thanks to these dedicated alumni for strengthening the relationships between alumni, students, and the CHRLS, and for promoting leadership in their field by providing academic and professional learning experiences, facilitating access to the Center's resources, and sharing professional opportunities. 

Gopher Gatherings Around the Globe

Staying in touch with colleagues and former classmates has become much easier thanks to the prevalence of social media, but sometimes, nothing beats an old-fashioned in-person get together. And, four separate groups of HRIR alumni did just that over the summer. 

Achieving Excellence in the Middle of a Snowstorm

HR Tomorrow 2013 logoEven in the wake of a freak April snowstorm that barreled down on the Twin Cities the night before the 2013 HR Tomorrow Conference, attendees were greeted by spring-like yellow napkins and bright flowers that donned the tables in the main hall. The snow may have stunted the growth of the plants outside, but it was no match for the growth of innovative learning that took place at the Conference.


Zhen ZhangZhen Zhang, '08 PhD-HRIR, Assistant Professor at Arizona State University, recently received the "ASU Faculty Achievement Award for Young Investigator." He also won an Early Career Award from the Academy of Management Research Methods Division. 



Student News

2013 Commencement

Commencement 2013Congratulations to all our students who graduated this spring and joined the ranks of Carlson School alumni! Degrees were conferred on 87 MA-HRIR students and 2 PhD-HRIR students at the ceremony held at Mariucci Arena on May 20. 


Eugene KimRecent graduate Eugene Kim, '12 PhD-HRIR, received an Honorable Mention for his Dissertation, "The mechanisms and work group context in the victimization of high performers," from the HR Division of the Academy of Management, a professional organization focused on the advancement of management and administration.

PhD Teaching Award WinnersCongratulations to current PhD-HRIR students from left, Gabe Licht, Patty Dahm, Qianyun Xie, and Yeonka (Sophia) Kim, pictured here with Professor Michelle Duffy (center), for winning "Outstanding Teaching Awards" from the Carlson School of Management for their work during the 2012-2013 academic year.

MA-HRIR Class of 2014It wasn't the easiest thing to coordinate, but our student leaders managed to gather the MA-HRIR Class of 2014 together to pause briefly near the end of Spring Semester to take a photo for posterity or at least for social media! Students were busy this summer with internships, volunteering, travel, and more, and we welcomed them back as second-year students on September 3.


Students and staff are busy gearing up for the first International HR Case Competition, hosted by our own HRIR program, and held at the Carlson School in November. The live competition will bring together seven teams of top HR graduate students from around the world to propose solutions to a pressing question of global talent management. The teams will be given 24 hours to prepare a structured case analysis and accompanying recommendations. They will present these findings to a panel of expert judges, allowing partner companies the opportunity to critically assess students' issue analysis, teamwork and problem-solving skills.

Faculty and Staff News

Welcome, New Faculty!

New Faculty 2013The Department of Work and Organizations welcomed our two newest faculty members this fall: Assistant Professor Alan Benson and Associate Professor John Kammeyer-Mueller. Benson joins the Carlson School after earning his PhD in Management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Kammeyer-Mueller earned his PhD in Human Resources and Industrial Relations from the University of Minnesota and taught at the University of Florida before joining the Carlson School. Introducing them to the local restaurant scene are current faculty members, back row from left, Pri Shah, Colleen Manchester, Theresa Glomb, Andy Van de Ven, and Avner Ben-Ner; and seated from left, John Budd, Alan Benson, John Kammeyer-Mueller, and Connie Wanberg


Same great book, different language

John Budd Chinese translationA Chinese translation of Professor John Budd's textbook "Labor Relations: Striking a Balance" was recently published by China Machine Press. The translation was done by a team of HRIR professors at Jilin University in northeastern China, and is expected to be used in labor relations courses at universities in China.


Colleen ManchesterCongratulations to Assistant Professor Colleen Manchester for winning the Herbie Award for Teaching Excellence. The Herbie is given annually to the teacher selected by our MA-HRIR students as the most effective for that year. In addition, Professor Manchester and PhD student Si Ahn Mehng have been named finalists for the 2013 Rosabeth Moss Kanter Award for Excellence in Work-Family Research. This award is given to the authors of the best research paper published in 2012, and Manchester and Mehng received the nomination for their Academy of Management Journal article, "Flexible Work Practices: A Source of Career Premiums or Penalties?"


Research by WOrg Faculty Featured at Academy of Management Annual Meeting

It was a big year for faculty, instructors and PhD students from the Department of Work and Organizations (WOrg) at the Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management (AoM), where more than 8,000 academic attendees from 88 countries gathered in Orlando in August. 

Staff Excellence Awards

Patti BlairPatti Blair, Admissions Coordinator, received an Individual Award for Excellence and Innovation during a school-wide award ceremony in April. In addition, Patti and the other staff of the CHRLS (Brenda Carriere, Jennifer Clement, Stacy Doepner-Hove, Helen Kopietz, Anne Obst, Christina Owen, and Susan Suchy) received a Team Award for Excellence and Innovation.


Randy Croce, video producer in the Labor Education Service, presented a preview of a documentary titled, "Who Built Our Capitol?" at the Capitol this spring. The completed project will result in a video documentary and website, as well as a school curriculum based on the material. 

Class Notes

Mindy Deardurff, '05, MA-HRIR, was named to the Minneapolis-St. Paul Business Journal's "40 Under 40" list of young leaders
Sheila Kramer, '03 MA-HRIR, joined Taylor Group as Vice President of Human Resources
Vadzim Piuneu, '06 MA-HRIR, joined Wolters Kluwer as Sr. HR Manager
Samantha South, '10 MA-HRIR, joined Allianz as Senior HR Systems and Reporting Consultant
Bridget Szeluga, '11, MA-HRIR, joined MillerCoors as an HR Manager.
Jacqueline Williams-Roll, '95 MA-IR, was named Senior Vice President, HR Operations, for General Mills

Visit the Dean's Blog

For a behind-the-scenes look at the Carlson School, visit Dean Sri Zaheer's blog.