Business Administration

business administration

Nestled within the liberal arts, almost 20% of our students choose to major in business administration.  Our program consists of 12 courses and includes:

  • foundational courses such as statistics and economics
  • core courses such as accounting, finance, management, and marketing
  • elective courses and an experiential course requirement.

 In addition to completing the program coursework, students must also complete a minor outside of business*.  

Our program is grounded in ethical and data-driven decision making.  The high-profile ethical transgressions that made headlines early in the 21st century business environment underscore the ongoing importance of business ethics and ethical conduct.  For new business students to successfully navigate through the many ethical facets of the contemporary climate and avoid potential dilemmas, a strategic stakeholder perspective must be formed. This perspective affords the opportunity, by striking an appropriate balance between theory and practice, to cultivate ethical cultures and promote ethical behaviors. This twofold objective is entwined throughout multiple business disciplines (e.g. sales, marketing, advertising, accounting, finance, management, sustainability, and corporate social responsibility).

In your first business course, BU 103 Managerial Ethics, you will examine the ethical context in which contemporary managers operate.  After an introduction to the functional areas of business, the course will review the various models of ethical decision making.  Students will have the opportunity to apply these models to situations which managers regularly face in the areas of discipline noted above.

The business minor, consisting of 5 courses (BU 103 Managerial Ethics, AC 143 Managerial Accounting, BU 214 Management, BU 215 Marketing and BU 361 Business Strategy) complements any one of the College’s majors.  After graduation, regardless of your major course of study, you will work in an organization and our business minor will prepare you with the knowledge of functional areas and help you to develop critical thinking, oral presentation and business writing skills as well as learning to work as an effective team member.

*A minor in Accounting or completing a 2nd major also satisfy the department’s minor requirement.   

As a Saint Michael's business major, you will learn about the functional areas of business including accounting, finance, management and marketing. We offer a range of upper-level elective courses in these areas, as well several courses in international business. The Department offers majors and minors in accounting and business administration.

The business administration major emphasizes the nature, function and social role of the business organization and examines how administration is both an art and a science. In keeping with the college’s liberal arts mission, requirements for the major are comprehensive but recognize the unique opportunities that the liberal studies foundation affords our students.

The major also includes components that help students understand the interface between business decisions and the conduct of a moral/ethical life. All business administration majors will have an experiential component and several electives as part of their program of study. In addition, the major requires that students pursue their liberal studies by completing a minor. This requirement can be met by completing an accounting minor, a minor either from those offered from any other department on campus, or a second major.

The accounting major prepares students for careers in a variety of organizations including public accounting firms, business enterprises, government and non-profit organizations. In addition, the coursework is sufficiently broad to prepare students to continue their studies in graduate programs in accounting or business administration. The relationship between the accounting major and preparation for the CPA exam is explained on the accounting major page.

One-on-one guidance from faculty will be a big part of your business education at St. Mike's. Our students frequent professors' offices for help and advice, not only for courses, but also for questions about the business world in general; our professors have a variety of practical and academic experience.

Writing and presentation skills also are fostered throughout the business major. Students have many chances to practice and enhance their writing and speaking abilities, which is essential to success in business.

Thomas Van Dzura, M.S., Administration

Instructor of Accounting

Contact Professor Van Dzura

Jeanmarie Hall 149 H
Box 38
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B.A., Accounting, Saint Michael's College
M.S., Administration, Saint Michael's College

Areas of Expertise:

Managerial Accounting
Nonprofit Accounting
Internal Management Reporting
Fiscal Stewardship

Courses I Teach:

Managerial Accounting
Managerial Ethics
Cost Management

Steven Doyon, BA, CPA

Visiting Instructor of Business Administration & Accounting

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Jeanmarie Hall 149B
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B.A. in Accounting: Saint Michael's College
Vermont licensed Certified Public Accountant 

Courses I Teach:

  • Managerial Accounting
  • Intermediate Accounting I
  • Intermediate Accounting II

My Saint Michael's

I practiced in public accounting for 14 years, serving as an auditor for one of the "Big 4" firms. I audited the financial statements of publicly traded and privately held firms in a variety of industries.

I have taught at Saint Michael's College since the fall 1995 semester, initially as a part-time instructor and full-time since the fall of 2008.

In that time, I have instructed 10 different courses within the accounting, business and finance curriculum. 

Erik Kaarla, MA, MEd

Adjunct Professor, Accounting and Business Department
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I am an educator with experience in teaching music, English, business and most specifically writing in a variety of environments including the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, Pine Manor College, Burlington College, Community College of Vermont, Champlain College, and Saint Michael’s College. 

My Saint Michael's:

My personal belief is that the classroom can and should be a forum for free thinking and intellectual inquiry.  Within its “four walls” exists the opportunity for students and instructor to weigh all ideas and methodologies. 

The instructor brings in academically accepted models and the students should challenge these models in order to see if they hold water; the competent instructor welcomes this process.  It is within this learning dynamic that magnificent events can occur.  The wisdom of the academe is tested in this way and the instructor proves his or her mettle by leading the class through a mutually respectful process of inquiry.

It is the instructor’s role to facilitate the creation of the proper atmosphere in the classroom through offering powerful and honest guidance.  The materials that an instructor uses should be of great quality and the result of careful forethought.  Through using only the best support materials does an instructor do the students justice.

A classroom should be a safe and focused environment for all its members.  There should be a time and place for silence and for euphoric moments alike.

I am a great advocate of modeling – giving the students a sense of the form of things allows them to understand what may be considered "classic" or an archetype.  From there they are able to develop further towards the creation of something completely original.  Reaching all the students equally may not always be possible, yet it must be attempted every time when “having class”.

Diane Lander, PhD

Associate Professor of Business Administration and Accounting

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Jeanmarie Hall 169A
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Ph.D. University of Kansas
M.B.A. University of North Texas
B.S. University of California, Davis (Phi Beta Kappa)

Areas of Expertise:

Corporate finance, specializing in models for valuing real assets

Courses I Teach:

  • Capital Budgeting
  • Finance
  • Strategic Valuation

Robert Letovsky, PhD

Professor of Business Administration and Accounting

Contact Professor Letovsky

Jeanmarie Hall 149
Box 273
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Ph.D. Concordia University
M.B.A. University of Toronto
B.Comm. McGill University

Areas of Expertise:

Case development focusing on business/government relations and sustainability

Courses I Teach:

  • Business Policy & Strategic Management
  • International Business
  • International Marketing
  • Marketing

My favorite class to teach is International Business because it focuses on the nexus between business and public policy. The course gives students an opportunity to see the connections between the right kinds of public policy and economic development, and the wrong kinds of public policy and economic hardship. The course also focuses on the global trading system and is the gateway for students to understand the role that free trade and open markets has played in reducing poverty and promoting economic progress.

Marie-France Nelson, MBA

Instructor of Business Administration

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Jeanmarie Hall 169C
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M.B.A University of Houston-Victoria
B.A. University of Texas

Areas of Expertise

Prior to teaching, I worked in the ski industry and continue to do so as a sales consultant. I have also worked for a strategic planning firm and a startup company in the pharmaceutical industry. Most of my experience is in marketing and sales.

Courses Taught

  • Critical Thinking and Communication
  • Marketing
  • International Marketing
  • Retail Management

Paul Olsen, Ed.D

Assistant Professor of Business Administration and Accounting

Contact Professor Olsen

Jeanmarie Hall 149E
Box 38
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B.A., Ed.D. University of Vermont
M.S.A., Saint Michael's College
Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) certification

I joined the Business Department in 1994. From 1994-2012, I was associate director of the Master of Science in Administration (MSA) program. Previously I was  Employee Benefits Manager and Assistant Director of Human Resources at the College. 

Courses I Teach:

  • Critical Thinking and Communication
  • Human Resource Management
  • Internship Practicum
  • Managerial Leadership

Karen Popovich, DBA

Associate Professor of Business Administration and Accounting

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Jeanmarie Hall 149D
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B.B.A., M.B.A., D.B.A. Cleveland State University

Areas of Expertise:

My doctorate is in operations management with a specific focus in strategic enrollment management for higher education. My background includes technology, strategy, management, and data analysis.

Courses I Teach:

I teach Decision-making Tools which is a required quantitative modeling course, Strategic Management which is our senior capstone course where students have the opportunity to develop a business plan complete with projected financials, Production and Operations Management with an emphasis on supply chain management and technology, and Statistics.

I have found a home at Saint Michael's College and in the Department of Business Administration and Accounting (DBAA) where I have the opportunity to teach large and seminar classes, work one-on-one with students as a mentor and advisor, integrate teaching and research, and contribute to a team of involved educators who help students achieve academic success and personal growth.

Learning is hard work, lots of fun and tremendously rewarding. I have high expectations for my students and myself as we all work diligently towards the learning objectives I developed. For me, teaching in a business program at a liberal arts institution is about shaping future graduates who bring their heads and hearts to work and recognize the value of being a life-long learner. I learn from my students as much as they learn from me. It’s not just about critical analysis and technical expertise, but developing effective communication skills and formulating intellectual and ethical decisions. To foster lasting educational experiences, my classes encompass small and large collaborative assignments, case discussions, experiential and simulated assignments, exams, classroom and off-campus visits with community leaders and business owners, academic research and personal reflection. My goal is to have students assess their situation, define a problem or acknowledge a complex problem from a variety of viewpoints, offer recommendations or make decisions and continuously evaluate their efforts to know they are not only doing something right, but they are doing what’s right in a larger context.

Joanne Scott, MBA

Instructor of Business Administration and Accounting

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Jeanmarie Hall 146
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M.B.A., Amos Tuck School at Dartmouth College, Tuck Scholar
B.A. Middlebury College Summa Cum Laude and elected to Phi Beta Kappa

Professional Experience:

  • Morgan Stanley 1978-1990, Vice President, Corporate Finance Department
  • Expertise in Finance and Investments

Courses I Teach:

  • BU 113 Critical Thinking and Communication
  • BU 331 Investments
  • BU 319 International Finance
  • BU 461 Business Strategy

Brosh Teucher

Assistant Professor of Business Administration and Accounting

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Jeanmarie Hall 149F
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Ph.D. University of Washington
M.S. Technion - Israel Institute of Technology
B.A. Haifa University

Areas of Expertise:

Negotiation, managerial dispute resolution, effective teamwork, leadership, cross-cultural negotiation and alternative dispute resolution processes and outcomes

Courses I Teach:

  • Introduction to Management
  • Negotiation Skills

Just as in the business world, you'll have opportunities to work in teams and develop effective communication and leadership skills through a variety of projects. A few examples:

  • Working with computer-based simulation to market consumer products in Latin America
  • Developing a marketing plan to sell bamboo bicycles in Liberia, vaccine kits in Burkina-Faso, or property insurance in Senegal
  • Acting as a consultant to a local business or nonprofit agency to help them address some organizational problem

Several local businesses and organizations offer internships to our students. These opportunities allow students to gain skills in a variety of business areas, from advertising to financial planning. Internship sites include Rome Snowboards, Kelliher Samets Volk, Vermont Lake Monsters, UBS and more.

Saint Michael's hosts a chapter of the Sigma Beta Delta Honors Society to honor outstanding academic achievement and scholarship by students studying business, management and administration. Sigma Beta Delta has more than 250 chapters nationwide. The society's principles include wisdom (Sigma), honor (Beta), and the pursuit of meaningful aspirations (Delta).

Our department encourages students to study abroad to gain valuable knowledge and experience in the global marketplace. Each year, almost 25% of our majors study abroad.

After graduation, our majors go on to careers like:

  • Career Development Supervisor/Financial Representative
  • Corporate Staff Accountant
  • Marketing Director/Project Manager
  • Fixed Income Trading
  • Fund Accountant
  • Private Donor Group
  • Quality Assurance Specialist
  • Real Estate Agent
  • Stockbroker Assistant
  • Tax Consultant
  • VP of Client Services
  • Account Development Manager
  • Financial Analyst
  • Advertising Executive
  • Claims Adjuster
  • Portfolio Administrator

Our students have found work at:

Many have gone on to graduate school for MBAs. In the last several years,

  • 25 students have attended graduate school at Clarkson
  • 5 to Northeastern
  • 5 to Bentley
  • 5 to Babson

Our students have also gone on to Law School, Boston University, San Jose State University, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Fordham, Pace and New York University.

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