Thia Breen, president of North America for Estée Lauder, inspires the class of 2012 to work hard, build integrity and take time to give back to the community.




As she addressed the 2012 graduates of the Carlson School at their Monday, May 14, commencement exercises in Mariucci Arena, Estée Lauder's Thia Breen stressed five themes that have brought her success in her career. Breen, a University alum and president of North America for Estée Lauder, emphasized the importance of working hard at your career, establishing integrity, developing top talent and thinking globally and acting locally while still taking the time to give back to yourself and others.

"At Carlson, you know all about working hard. What you might not know is that being successful means establishing boundaries," she said. "Giving yourself permission for time off is the right thing to do personally and professionally. It's really important to have things to look forward to that aren't work. This opens an opportunity for you to give back to society."

More than 530 undergraduates and 790 graduate students earned their degrees from the Carlson School this spring. Undergraduates received Bachelor of Science in Business degrees. Graduate students earned several types of degrees: Master of Business Administration, Master of Arts in Human Resources and Industrial Relations, Master of Business Taxation, and Master of Accountancy. Graduates participated in diverse programs including Full-Time, Part-Time, and Executive MBA; Global Executive MBA (China, Vienna, Warsaw), Master of Arts in Human Resources and Industrial Relations, Master of Business Taxation, and Master of Accountancy. PhD degrees were award in Business Administration and Human Resources and Industrial Relations.

Achievement Awards

The Academic Excellence Award, given to the highest academically ranked undergraduate senior, was awarded to Elizabeth Roemmich. The Tomato Can Loving Cup Award, the school's highest honor to an undergraduate student, was presented to Daniel Spors.

Those named as community engagement scholars were Allyson Lister and Racquel Smrz. Recognition as a community engagement scholar is earned by students who complete nine credits of service-learning course work, at least 400 hours of community service, a series of reflective pieces, and an integrative community project that results in the creation of a sustainable project for a community organization.

The Dean's award for best undergraduate honors theses went to Courtney Carufel for "I Feel Just As Fake As My Bracelet: Counterfeit Products and Threats to Our Sense of Self" and Adam Lueck for "Show Me the Money: An Analysis of the Efficiency on's On-line Microfinance Interface."