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Rochester's Oakland University to turn bed and breakfast into living learning community

Excerpt

The former Cobblestone Manor Bed and Breakfast in Auburn Hills will be leased to Oakland University in Rochester for Honors College students as part of an agreement between the Moceri family and the university, officials announced.

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Earn Personal Trainer Certification through Oakland University PACE program

This summer, Oakland University’s Professional and Continuing Education (PACE) is partnering with World Instructor Training Schools (W.I.T.S.) to offer a Personal Trainer Certificate Program

“The health and fitness industry is booming, and this growth is expected to continue,” said Amy Olind, assistant director of PACE. “As a result, there are a variety of employment opportunities available for personal trainers holding a legitimate certification, and we are proud to provide the opportunity to achieve this at OU.”

Through the Personal Trainer Certificate Program, students will complete coursework that will prepare them to obtain Certified Personal Trainer – Level 1 status. Individuals with this certification help to improve overall health and fitness of clients ranging in age, health and fitness status through the development and implementation of fitness programs required for practice in the service industry in the United States.

“This program is ideal for those who are passionate about fitness and who are also looking to either change careers or earn some extra money doing what they love,” Olind said.

The cost of the course is $700 for current OU Recreation Center members (students and community), and $800 for non-members. It includes 15 hours of lecture and 15 hours of practical, hands-on training led by Erin Davidson, M.S., OU’s fitness programs and services coordinator, at OU’s on-campus recreation center (a four-month membership to the Rec Center is included in program tuition).

Additionally, included in the program cost is the opportunity for students to complete a comprehensive internship at a local fitness facility.

“W.I.T.S. is a fully accredited organization that provides a rigorous, up-to-date curriculum, and the course includes an extensive hands-on component,” Olind said. “This really caused them to stand out from their competitors, as we felt this experiential learning was a necessary piece of the training required to enter this field.”

After completing the 30-hour program, candidates receive a voucher to register with W.I.T.S. to take the written and practical examinations required to become a CPT – Level 1, and completion of the internship component allows for receipt of CPT – Level 2 status.

According to Olind, the courses will be offered twice a year, with the initial offering beginning in summer 2018 on Mondays and Wednesdays starting July 23 through Aug. 22 from 5:30-8:30 p.m.

“This program is open to community members and Oakland students alike, and we look forward to helping health and fitness enthusiasts from a variety of backgrounds reach their goals,” Olind said.

To receive updates about registration, sign up on the CPT Course Pre-Registration website. To learn more about the program, visit oakland.edu/pace/health-sciences/personal-trainer or contact PACE at oupace@oakland.edu.

Entrepreneurial competition rewards idea generation

Equipped with just three slides and four minutes, the five finalists of a school-wide business idea pitch competition, sponsored by OU’s School of Business Administration, presented their ideas to a panel of experienced entrepreneurial-minded professionals for the chance to win cash awards.  

Open to all OU students, the competition invited participants to submit a proposal detailing an idea for a product, service or social enterprise that would benefit the Oakland University community. From the 25 submitted proposals, judges selected five finalists who then took part in pitch development workshop to help them prepare for the last phase of the competition. 

“Hats off to the students because they had some pretty complex concepts they had to explain in a very short time,” says Gregory Doyle, manager at Oakland County One Stop Shop Business Center, who served as one of the judges. Ray Gunn, MGT ‘80, president, Schechter Wealth, and Jim Roberts, CEO, Jim Roberts Enterprises, also served as judges. 

Assistant Professor of Entrepreneurship and competition coordinator Jae Kang, Ph.D., points out that “unlike other business plan competitions, the focus of this competition was idea generation. Unfortunately, many business plans go to the trash can because they start from ill-defined ideas, or uncreative ideas. This event is designed to help the student with the initial idea.” 

Whether launching a startup or entering an established company, the problem identification and solution process is a valuable skill for any business-minded professional. 

“Developing a business idea helps you think outside of the box,” says Samantha Roberts, MKT ‘18, the $1,000 silver winner. “You have to think of potential issues and resolve them before anyone even asked. This competition helped me to be able to fully analyze a situation and come up with solutions.” Roberts’ pitch proposed PodU, a podcast-based app to connect students to lectures and class materials. 

“It was one of my best experiences at Oakland, I’ve become famous,” says Fawaz Alkhudhayr, engineering junior, who took home the $2,000 gold award. Alkhudhayr’s proposal aimed to add diverse food options on campus by introducing a middle eastern food, snack and juice truck. 

“I’m interested in taking any chance that comes my way,” says Alkhudhayr. “When you get email from your University, don’t ignore it. You should take a look, think about it. You don’t always know where your success will come from.” 

Patrick Adamus, marketing junior, captured the $500 bronze award for his idea to create an Oakland Network app, which would include sections on parking availability, professor ratings, discussion boards and petitions. 

Judges were impressed by the imagination and work that went into all the submissions and presentations by the finalists. 

“As judges, we really focused on how well thought out the idea was, the clarity of the presentation and the feasibility and approach to solve the stated problem,” says Gunn. “Alkhudhayr stood out because of his relentless passion for his idea combined with his ability to identify and address a real problem: the need for variety in food options on campus.” 

“There’s an awful lot of talent at Oakland University and I’m sure I was only seeing the tip of the iceberg,” says Doyle. “There were some brilliant students and I’m looking forward to next year’s competition. It was just a great experience for everybody who participated.”

Oakland University, Baker College partner for physical therapy workshop

With a focus on promoting a community-based approach to health education, students and leaders in the Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program at Oakland University and the Physical Therapist Assistant (PTA) program at Baker College of Auburn Hills came together in OU’s Human Health Building to talk with individuals who have neurological impairments. 
 
The intra-professional workshop marked the first such collaboration between the two schools, according to Visiting Instructor of Physical Therapy, Jacqueline Scully, who helped coordinate the event for Oakland, along with Associate Professor of Physical Therapy, Deb Doherty.
 
“Healthcare is so much of a team effort now, whereas 25 years ago, we kind of worked in our own little silos,” Scully said. “We have to start getting students used to working with each other now so they’ll be ready for that when they get into the workforce.”
 
She added that the experience can also dispel misconceptions students may have about what it’s like to work with patients who have neurological impairments.
 
“I think it helps just being able to sit down with the patients, as well as their caretakers, and get a better understanding of who they are and what they’re going through.”

The patients at the intra-professional workshop had all suffered strokes and are all participants in OU’s Bridge the Gap Program. This community initiative pairs second- and third-year physical therapy students with patients in need of physical therapy to help treat neurological impairments. Students perform the physical therapy – under supervision of a licensed physical therapist – as part of their neurological interventions classes.
 
Emily Pietraniec, a Doctor of Physical Therapy student who has participated in Bridge the Gap, said that intra-professional collaboration between DPT and PTA students is a natural fit.
 
“We’ve had inter-professional education with medical and nursing students before, but never anything with PTA students. And they’re actually the ones we’ll be working with the closest,” she said. “It opens up good communication and allows both sides to show what they can offer.”
 
DPT student Ben McCown noted that while he worked with licensed PTA’s during one of his clinical internships, this was his first interaction with PTA students.
 
“This was a great opportunity to bring two parts of the profession together,” he said. “We’re going to be graduating pretty close together and working with some of the same patients toward the same goals. For us, it’s really about learning how to work together to achieve the best outcome for the patients.”

At the intra-professional event, students listened to patients and their spouses discuss their experiences dealing with the life-altering effects of neurological impairment – from time spent in hospitals and rehabilitation centers, to daily challenges of life at home and in the community.
 
Clarkston residents Philip and Carrolann Paradise were among those who shared their story with students. In 2013, Philip suffered a stroke that left him unable to walk. He spent time in both inpatient and outpatient facilities before connecting with Bridge the Gap, which he and his wife learned about from another participant in the program.

“It’s a wonderful program,” said Carrolann. “I wish all the colleges had it, but they don’t.”
 
She said her husband has benefited from the therapy, both physically and emotionally. He especially enjoys watching students learn from the experience.
 
“Of all the places we’ve gone to, we find that the students really have a heart for him,” she said. “One of the major issues right now is that there aren’t enough neuro PT’s. And by coming here, we get a chance to encourage people to go into neuro, so that we can get better services for Phil and other neuro patients.”

According to a 2017 Huffington Post article, more than 100 million Americans - close to a third of the total population - suffer from neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Multiple Sclerosis, migraines, epilepsy and spinal cord injury. These conditions put a financial strain on the health care system, to the tune of nearly $800 billion in annual costs. Not all those costs are covered by insurance – which was one of many topics discussed at the intra-professional workshop.
 
“We talked about how insurance will only cover certain treatments and how that can be hard to deal with,” said PTA student Lauren Vanderhoff. “There’s also the daily activities of getting out of bed and getting around in the community. You have to really prepare and have a plan of what you’re going to do and how you’re going to get there.”

PTA student Kameron Joostberns said that hearing from patients and caregivers also gave him insight into the challenges they face.

“Something that most people wouldn’t think twice about, such as travel or vacation accommodations, is so noticeable to them,” he said. “It really does affect not just the patient, but the whole family.”
 
Vanderhoff added, “It’s important to recognize that the caregivers are going through this process with the patients, and they may be experiencing their own physical or emotional issues. So, going to support groups is not only for the patients, it’s for the caregivers too.”

Baker’s Academic Coordinator of Clinical Education, Susan Tomica, said the event gave the PTA students an opportunity to build on textbook and classroom instruction.
 
“These students are in their first semester of our PTA program, so they’re learning about concepts right now,” she said. “To be able to come here and see someone with real impairments share their experience is very valuable for them.”

Oakland University to recognize prestigious nurses at 30th Annual Nightingale Awards

Oakland University’s School of Nursing and its Board of Visitors are celebrating 30 years of honoring Michigan’s top nurses at its annual Nightingale Awards for Nursing Excellence.®
 
The only event of its kind in the state, this prestigious awards ceremony will be held on May 10, 2018 at the San Marino Club in Troy. The awards were created to spotlight nurses from a variety of clinical roles who go above and beyond in their care for their patients and their families. 
 
More than 700 nurses, physicians and administrators, as well as family members and nursing supporters will attend this year’s awards ceremony. This esteemed event includes an elegant sit down dinner and fish-bowl style raffle. Raffle winners have the opportunity go home with a 40” Smart TV, golf and spa certificates, a trip to Chicago and other unique packages. Fox 2 News anchors Roop Raj and Amy Andrews will once again co-emcee this year’s awards ceremony.
 
Each of ten winning recipients receives a check for $1,000, a solid bronze statue of Florence Nightingale and a special Nightingale ceremonial pin. Runners-up each receive a commemorative plaque and Nightingale ceremonial pin. Nominees were nominated by their peers, supervisors, friends and patients in recognition for their superior service and expertise.
 
The 2018 Nightingale Awards for Nursing Excellence® is presented by Beaumont Health.  Other sponsors include: Ascension Health, St. Joseph Mercy Health System, Detroit Medical Center, St. John Providence Medical Staff, Nexteer Automotive, McLaren Oakland & McLaren Macomb and PSJ Anesthesia. 
 
For more information, or for tickets to the event, please contact August Gunderson in the School of Nursing at (248) 364-8725, via email at nightingale@oakalnd.edu or visit oakland.edu/nursing/nightingale.

2018 Award Winners
 
Advanced Nurse Practice & Research
Winner: Mary Jo Smith, St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor
Runner Up: Makenzie Thimm, Ascension Michigan – St. John Providence

Distinguished Alumni
Winner: Kristen R. McGrath, Beaumont Health – Royal Oak
Runner Up: Katie Hoxie, Beaumont Health – Royal Oak

Excellence in Education
Winner: Kino Xandro Anuddin, Ascension Michigan – St. John Providence 
Runner Up: Antionette A. Trevino, Beaumont Health

Emerging Nurse Leader 
Winner: Michele Rausch, St. Joseph Mercy Oakland 
Runner Up: Faith Aven Straton, Ascension Michigan – St. John Providence

Executive Administration
Winner: Marilyn S. Begle, Beaumont Home Health Services
Runner Up: Kathy M. Brubaker, St. Joseph Mercy Chelsea
 
Nursing in the Community
Winner: Diane Zalecki Bertalan, HAVEN of Oakland County
Runner Up: Mary Ann Ryan, HOPE Recuperative Care Center
 
Post-Acute Care & Specialty Nursing
Winner: Pamela Laszewski, Karmanos Cancer Center
Runner Up: Marla Clausen, Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital
 
Staff Nurse (2)
Winner:  Sabrina M. Zott, St. Joseph Mercy Oakland 
Winner:  Deborah White, McLaren Oakland 
Runner-Up:  Maria Borri, Beaumont Health – Royal Oak 
Runner-Up:  Lisa M. Hill, Ascension Michigan – St. John Providence 
 
People’s Choice Award
Winner:  Leesa J. Jones, Ascension Michigan – St. John Providence
Runner-Up:  Krystal L. McNamee, Henry Ford Health System – Detroit

Rochester Hills couple builds gourmet catnip company from scratch

Rochester Hills couple Rich and Lisa Jackson launched gourmet catnip company Skinny Pete's Gourmet Catnip this fall, though they've been developing their products and working the floors of trade shows for longer than that.

It was in 2014 when Rich, a professional director and visual effects artist -- wife Lisa is a producer -- was sitting at a coffee shop, working on an illustration of a cat. While listening to National Public Radio on his headphones, a story came across detailing a growing industry: Gifts for pets.

Around that same time, Rich noticed that wild catnip was growing in their garden. Imbued with an entrepreneurial spirit, the Jacksons saw an opportunity. And thus the seeds for Skinny Pete's Gourmet Catnip company were sown.

The Jacksons say there are two main focuses of their business. Their catnip is a high-quality, organic catnip. So much so, in fact, that they say that it makes for a good tea suitable for human consumption.

The other aspect that separates their product from the pack is the Skinny Pete packaging. The gourmet catnip is sold in packages of three varieties: Blue Meowy Wowy, Furmaceutical Grade, and Purruvian Pink. The catnip comes in artfully designed tins, keeping the product fresh and fresh-looking.

"We have three cats at the house, and they each respond to the catnip differently," says Rich Jackson. "Panda responds as if its a stimulant. The one we call Skinny Pete gets real lethargic. And Tucker gets real lovable and affectionate."

"Cats that ingest it act differently than the ones inhaling it."

Though they've only been officially on the market for a month or so, the Jacksons say that the response has been fantastic. The main bulk of their sales come directly from their website, though they also sell at local independent retailers. The Jacksons sell cat-related apparel and poster on their website, as well.

"One thing we've noticed with our clients is that they really love their cats," says Lisa Jackson. "There are real emotional connections there."

Got a development news story to share? Email MJ Galbraith here or send him a tweet @mikegalbraith.

OU INC graduates international client company Car Studio

Car Studio, an OU INC client company, recently graduated from its incubator program and international Soft Landing Facility. The company’s success has allowed it to move into a nearby facility in Troy. Headquartered in Europe, Car Studio’s U.S. expansion has led the parent company to decide to keep the U.S. location in Oakland County, thereby adding jobs to the region and becoming a thoroughly successful incubator graduate.

During Car Studio’s time as a client company, OU INC provided incubation and acceleration services to assist Car Studio on their path to success. Car Studio took advantage of the benefits of being located within an incubator and soft landings program, including that of being in close proximity to other growing companies in the expansion phase.

“For us, the best things about OU INC are the spacing, the pricing, and the quiet atmosphere to start a business. OU INC has the warehouse space, which not a lot of places have,” said Andrea Abrami, president, Car Studio North America.

“Though there are many types of businesses in one office building, we all have the same startup business mentality. So, if you need anything or have questions, we’re all in it together.”

Car Studio was founded in 1986 in Europe by Dario Abrami after having gained more than 20 years of experience in the design industry. Expanding rapidly, it became one of the leading companies in the automotive and agriculture sectors. Today, Car Studio boasts experience in many different sectors and can offer a high level of technical competence thanks to qualified collaborators and state-of-the-art IT systems.

OU INC is a designated Soft Landing Facility for international companies through the International Business Association (iNBIA). iNBIA’s Soft Landings network ensures that businesses entering or expanding into a new country are provided with an accelerated introduction to that country’s business practices, regulations, and culture. Soft Landings designees help make contacts in a new country more quickly and efficiently while providing access to the resources necessary to meet their business goals.

Oakland University approves Public Relations and Strategic Communication major

The public relations professional works hard to get positive messages into the public arena through traditional and social media methods. This field requires resourceful and creative communicators who overcome increasingly crowded airwaves with impactful stories that help promote their clients’ objectives. It is also a profession expected to grow in the next several years. 
 
To fill that expected need, a newly approved Bachelor of Arts degree in Public Relations and Strategic Communication has been added at Oakland University. OU’s program begins with the Fall 2018 semester and joins only two other universities in Southeast Michigan offering such a degree. Currently, public relations is the most popular minor in the Department of Communication and Journalism. 
 
“For the first year, 30 students will be admitted into the new PR major,” said Chiaoning Su, an assistant professor in the Department of Communication and Journalism who has helped shape the curriculum. “Applications for the charter class will begin being accepted in January 2018 and will be considered contingent upon many factors, including a 3.0 grade point average or better in WRT 1060 Writing Composition II, JRN 2000 Intro to Journalism and News Writing and JRN 2500 Intro to Public Relations.”
 
 “This program will be rigorous both in theories classes and applied skills,” according to Garry Gilbert, director of the journalism program and chair of the committee that brought forward the idea of adding public relations nearly three years ago. “Several new classes will be offered including, writing for PR, research methods in public relations and a crisis communication class.”
 
The committee saw a growing interest from students and surveyed 36 area PR agencies who all thought adding this major would help graduates find jobs after college. 

“Our location is optimum for students to get a great internship in PR, and we know those internships tend to lead to jobs,” Gilbert said.
 
Su added, “Our long-term plans include establishing a chapter in the Public Relations Student Society of America and developing study abroad internship opportunities.”
 
Another encouraging sign is that employment of public relations specialists is projected to grow 6 percent from 2014 to 2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Their PR report indicates, “The need for organizations to maintain their public image will continue to drive employment growth. Candidates can expect strong competition for jobs at advertising and public relations firms and organizations with large media exposure.”

Harness the power of leadership

Most employee development courses include: (1) Bribe people into a conference room with coffee and bagels; (2) Have someone stand in front of the room all day while telling the group things they should be doing; (3) Break into discussion groups to make things “interactive;” (4) Go home wondering what was learned. 
 
This cycle of employee development falls short in effectiveness, value and practicality. This is why Leader Dogs for the Blind developed Harness the Power of Leadership (HPL), a leadership, management and team-building workshop unlike anything in the industry. The one-day workshop is held on the Leader Dog campus in Rochester Hills or at the attending organization’s facilities. The workshop accommodates up to 24 participants (but can be adapted to varying class sizes) and teaches fundamental leadership and management concepts using guide dogs as tools to exemplify the material. 
 
Under blindfold, attendees work hands-on with guide dogs to learn concepts of effective leadership. The course is led by a person who is blind who shows how the working relationship between a Leader Dog and its handler provides valuable lessons that lead to success when applied to business.
 
“I do not consider my blindness to be a disability,” commented Leader Dog presenter Richard “Buss” Brauer.  “It certainly is an inconvenience. But the lessons Leader Dog taught me about leadership, communication and decision-making are what allowed me to achieve such a high degree of business and personal success.  People are simply blown away by how applicable this model is in the professional world.”
 
Lessons learned in many employee development courses are often forgotten and just not used. HPL is an effective program because attendees learn through personal experience so they readily remember the lessons and subsequently implement them in their daily work.

“We all know employees react negatively when they are being ‘preached to’ or face hours of lecture,” says Dani Landolt, Leader Dog’s chief marketing officer. “HPL’s value is in its unique delivery of leadership concepts and team empowerment in a truly interactive and interesting way.”
 
Leader Dog will be hosting a session of Harness the Power of Leadership open to individual attendees on October 4, 2017. This is a great opportunity to experience HPL yourself and learn how it can benefit your organization. The session will be held at Leader Dogs for the Blind, 1039 S. Rochester Road, Rochester Hills, Michigan, from 8:30-4:30 p.m. The cost for this full-day leadership experience is $375.00 per person.
 
To learn more about this valuable leadership experience, contact David Bann at Leader Dogs for the Blind by calling 248.218.6318 or emailing dave.bann@leaderdog.org.

OU retains gold status ranking among veteran-friendly schools in Michigan

For the second straight year, Oakland University was awarded the highest possible ranking for veteran-friendliness by the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency. The organization recently published its 2017-2018 list of Veteran Friendly Schools, which recognizes institutions of higher learning for dedication to student veterans and dependents utilizing their G.I. Bill and other educational benefits. 
 
“The continued growth of MVAA’s Veteran-Friendly School Program demonstrates the dedication our state’s academic institutions have to the success of our student veteran population,” said MVAA Director James Robert Redford in a release. “Michigan is fortunate to have top quality educational institutions that maintain high standards of support and services for our growing population of veterans and their families. The program makes it easy for students to identify which schools are invested in their success, and we greatly appreciate the commitment of this year’s participants.”
 
Based on a variety of factors, the 70 schools on this year’s list were grouped into bronze, silver and gold levels of recognition. Oakland was one of 41 schools to earn a gold-level designation and one of 28 schools that fulfilled all seven evaluation criteria, listed below.
  • Established process for identification of current student veterans
  • Veteran-specific website
  • Active student-operated veterans club or association
  • Veteran-specific career services, resources, advising and/or outcome monitoring
  • On-campus veteran’s coordinator and/or designated staff point of contact
  • System to evaluate and award credit based on prior military training and experience
  • Monitoring and evaluation of student veteran academic retention, transfer and graduation rates
 “This is a great honor for Oakland University, and I am humbled to be able to play a part in receiving this well-deserved recognition,” said Eric Wuestenberg, coordinator of Oakland’s Office of Veterans Support Services. “Earning the MVAA's Gold Level status for another year signifies that we continue to provide support to our students at the highest level possible, and they deserve nothing less.”
 
To learn more about veteran support services at Oakland, visit oakland.edu/veterans or call (248) 370-2010.

OU professor awarded $210,829 NSF grant for research on new terahertz generator

Dr. Andrei Slavin, a distinguished professor and chair of the Department of Physics at Oakland University, has been awarded a $210,829 grant from the National Science Foundation as part of a collaborative research project which seeks to develop a new type of terahertz generator that can be used in a variety of fields, including communication, medical imaging and security.
 
“Existing generators of terahertz radiation either work at temperatures below room temperature or are based on expensive and bulky laser systems,” Slavin said. “These significant deficiencies severely limit their usefulness. The goal of this project is to create a new type of terahertz generator that is compact, inexpensive and works at room temperature.”
 
According to Slavin, terahertz radiation falls between infrared radiation and microwave radiation on the electromagnetic spectrum. It can pass through clothing, paper, cardboard, wood, masonry, plastic and ceramics, which makes it ideal for detecting concealed weapons and explosive materials.
 
Terahertz radiation can also detect differences in density of a tissue, which could allow for effective detection of skin and surface cancer. Some frequencies of terahertz radiation can also be used for 3D imaging of teeth and may be more accurate than conventional X-ray imaging.
 
In addition, terahertz waves, which operate at a much higher frequency than microwaves, could one day be used to deliver data up to 100 times faster than today’s cellular or Wi-Fi networks.
 
“We believe that communication technology will go further with increased frequencies,” Slavin said. “So the next generation of 5G communication will probably use frequencies that are higher than current frequencies.”
 
According to Slavin, the research project is a collaborative effort between a team of experts in magnetic device fabrication at the University of California, Irvine, and leading theorists in the field of magnetic devices at Oakland University.
 
“As a result of this three-year research effort, we expect the result will be a terahertz generator that will be micro-sized – approximately 10 microns in diameter and less than 1 micron in thickness,” Slavin said, noting that 10 microns is approximately twice the size of a human blood cell.
 
“With this device, we will be able to generate approximately 1 microwatt of power at a frequency of about one-half terahertz,” he added. “You might think one microwatt isn’t a lot, but one microwatt is sufficient power for many applications, especially communication applications.”
 
The new generators will be based on readily available antiferromagnetic materials, such as iron oxide and nickel oxide, and will operate via conversion of magnetic oscillation in these materials into terahertz electromagnetic waves.
 
“Our invention is an example of trying to tap into the naturally existing internal magnetic field in the antiferromagnetic material using the fact that current propagating in the heavy metal creates a perpendicular current of spins,” Slavin said.
 
The NSF grant is for a three-year period.
 
“The grant allows us to concentrate more and intensively collaborate with our experimental counterparts at the University of California, Irvine, and creates a possibly to check our theoretical ideas experimentally,” Slavin said. “We’re very grateful to the NSF. Nobody knows whether it will work or not, but we will try to do our best to bring them an experimental prototype within three years. “
 
More information about the NSF grant can be found online at nsf.gov.

OU INC client Wave Water Works teams with engineering students for product validation

OU INC client Wave Water Works, LLC has a patented Oscillo Drive that converts the up and down movement of wave water into reusable energy and electricity. The company recently leveraged the strong relationship between OU INC and Oakland University’s School of Engineering and Computer Science (SECS) to successfully test their Oscillo Drive technology, verifying the device’s production and output of energy and electricity.  

Wave Water Works utilized talented students through the school’s senior design course. This requirement for OU senior-level engineering students brings together mechanical, electrical, and computer engineering students to work on real-world projects that demand the skills and knowledge of each of their disciplines. A State of Michigan Business Accelerator Fund award allowed for OU INC to partially fund the effort.
 
Based on the results obtained by the students, Wave Water Works approved an undisclosed operational testing site for the Oscillo Drive in Port Huron, Michigan. This extension of the OU SECS testing will allow for further measurement and monitoring of the power input and electrical output from the wave-water oscillating movements. Wave Water Works is additionally locating multiple working sites, including locations in Macomb County, Israel, and Lebanon.
 
“It is estimated that OU INC, through the professional efforts of SECS students and faculty, provided Wave Water Works with more than $1.5M worth of professional engineering services,” said Chuck Keys, project director and business manager of Wave Water Works.

Completing hardware and software research and development (R&D) for this startup green-energy company includes the following faculty and students:

·         Michael Latcha, Ph.D., ME, director, SECS Senior Design Laboratory, Department of Mechanical Engineering
·         Daniel Aloi, Ph.D., Department of Mechanical Engineering
·         Oakland University Senior Engineering Students: 
                 -Tia Sherrard, Electrical Engineering, Team Manager
                 -Carla Gerst, Electrical Engineering
                 -Makayla Eckardt, Computer Engineering
                 -Mark Tarnicki, Electrical Engineering
                 -Brent Stelzer, Electrical Engineering
                 -William Carter, Mechanical Engineering
                 -Edwin McBride, Mechanical Engineering
                 -Paul Smyrski, Mechanical Engineering
 
For more information, contact Joan Carleton at (586) 884-9324 or jfcarlet@oakland.edu.

OU INC is a Smartzone Business Incubator and Innovation Center, in collaboration with the City of Rochester Hills, Michigan Economic Development Corporation, and strategic industry partners. With a focus on the energy, medical device, and information technology sectors, OU INC provides entrepreneurial resources and strategic business solutions for developing business ventures and accelerating ideas to market. OU INC is a designated Soft Landing Facility through the International Business Association for international companies. For more information, visit oakland.edu/ouinc.

The Business Accelerator Fund is an initiative of the State of Michigan’s 21st Century Jobs Fund Program and is distributed by the Michigan Small Business Development Center (MI­-SBDC) through the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and Michigan’s network of business accelerators. Through this program, OU INC is successfully delivering specialized business acceleration services to companies commercializing advanced technology.

51 students awarded the OCC Chancellor's Scholarship

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More than 50 incoming Oakland Community College (OCC) students across the county are getting a head start on their higher education following graduation. These new students will start their first-year with tuition and fees covered by the College’s Chancellor’s Scholarship award.

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OU named among top colleges in Michigan for business majors

Excerpt

Payscale and Zippia recently named Oakland University among top colleges for business majors in Michigan. The organizations recognized Oakland based on career outcomes and return on educational investment for graduates of Oakland’s School of Business Administration. 

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New business analytics certificate expands big data education programs at OU

Every day more and more companies are leveraging the benefits of business analytics to improve customer service, enhance operational performance, identify new business markets and drive revenue growth. The industry is flourishing, and Forbes reports the market is expected to nearly double by 2020.
 
To address that demand, the Oakland University School of Business Administration now offers a full complement of business analytics programs to meet a variety of educational and career needs.
 
The newest addition is Oakland’s Graduate Certificate in Business Analytics. This five-course program is ideal for working professionals from any discipline to gain knowledge in this growing field. The program is available beginning in the fall of 2017 and students can apply online now at oakland.edu/applynow.
 
“Business analytics is moving beyond the scope of IT professionals,” said Vijayan Sugumaran, professor of Management Information Systems and chair of the Decision and Information Sciences Department at Oakland University. “Employers are increasingly seeking professionals across disciplines who can harness data to solve business problems.”
 
Employers agree that finding people who have the requisite blend of quantitative computing and business domain knowledge and skills for business analytics is a challenge. From automotive and financial services to marketing, human resources and education, career opportunities abound for those who understand how to leverage the power of data to improve business processes.
 
“Oakland’s Graduate Certificate in Business Analytics is perfect for someone seeking specific knowledge in analytics to enhance their performance or career prospects without committing to a full master’s degree program,” Sugumaran said.
 
The need for business analytics education includes, but also goes beyond, the IT profession. Recognizing this, the Oakland School of Business Administration offers a suite of programs to meet the varied interests of those seeking to expand their skills and knowledge in this area.
 
OU’s complete suite of business analytics programs includes:
  • Graduate Certificate in Business Analytics
  • MBA with a business analytics concentration
  • Master of Science in IT Management with a business analytics concentration
  • Business analytics minor for Oakland undergraduate students in any major
  • Business analytics specialization for Oakland MIS students.
 
For more information about the Business Analytics Graduate Certificate, visit oakland.edu/business/graduate-executive-programs/business-analytics-graduate-certificate.

To learn more about OU’s Business Analytics programs, visit oakland.edu/business/undergraduate-majors-minors/business-analytics.
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