Great Things Are Happening at Daniels

October 27, 2014


From the Desk of Dr. Daniel Connolly, Senior Associate Dean

Daniel ConnollyFall is a busy time as we begin the school year and welcome new faculty, staff, students and parents into the Daniels learning community. It is also a time when we implement new initiatives and enhance current programs to strengthen the student experience. In all that we do, Daniels strives for excellence and rich, hands-on learning, both in and outside of the classroom. I am pleased to share some examples of the many great things happening at Daniels this year.

Our undergraduate students have the opportunity to get involved in several case competitions as part of our Gateway to Business course—the first business course that students take at Daniels. In addition to building mobile apps and pitching business plans to venture capitalists, students repurpose recycled goods into potential products that can be introduced to the marketplace. The Ethics Boot Camp is a required experience for sophomores in which students delve into ethical issues with their peers, professors and business professionals to help them develop a lifelong framework for ethical decision making. This year’s program featured a special introduction from Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper. Finally, our Backpacks to Briefcases program helps students develop both professionally and personally with workshops ranging from business etiquette and dress code to landing the perfect job and negotiating skills.

At the graduate level, we stress a real-world focus through project-based learning. This year, many Daniels graduate students will work on consulting projects, social capital projects, and/or data analytics projects with real business organizations. They will also have opportunities to participate in global learning initiatives through travel experiences to places such as Israel, Tanzania, Mongolia, Peru and China, to name a few. Plus, Daniels graduate students have case competition opportunities both on campus and internationally. Our very own Race and Case business ethics case competition and the Inclusive Excellence Case Competition are annual highlights offering students with transformative experiences and great way to hone their analytical skills. 

To ensure that all Daniels students have excellent career opportunities when they graduate, Daniels Career Services continues to expand its industry mentor programs, build deeper relationships with current employers and cultivate new employer relationships. This fall, we launched Career Connections to mark the start of the on-campus recruiting season. The program featured numerous workshops and career-related events, including the Colorado Business School Career Fair, jointly hosted with the business schools at Colorado State University and the University of Colorado at Boulder. This was the largest career fair that Daniels has ever had, bringing together 150 employers, including over 30 Fortune 500 companies—and hundreds of Daniels students. Throughout the fall, numerous companies have been recruiting on campus. A small sample of which includes: Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase, Arrow Electronics, New York Life, Hitachi Consulting, Starwood, KPMG and many others.

It is exciting to see a growing and vibrant career culture at Daniels. Already this fall, many students have accepted jobs for when they graduate, putting our overall job placement rates well above those from last year at the same time. Clearly the job market is improving and companies are moving up their hiring cycles to maintain a competitive edge—and these companies are looking to Daniels for a pool of talent from which to recruit. This year we are expanding the number of City Treks career networking trips to four cities: New York City, San Francisco, Seattle and Los Angeles, with other destinations on the horizon. In addition, we are hosting numerous Rocky Mountain Treks to local companies in the Denver Metro area, such as ProBuild, Vail Resorts, Modis, and DaVita. City Treks, our Industry Career Panels and our industry mentoring programs are part of what makes Daniels a great place to be a student and provide wonderful opportunities to alumni, employers and friends who want to stay involved with Daniels and its students.

Finally, Daniels offers a variety of opportunities for students to engage in the business community, network with industry leaders and meet other students and alumni. This fall, our signature Voices of Experience speaker series has already featured Julie Clark, founder of Baby Einstein and Kip Tindell, CEO of The Container Store. Both talks were inspiring and reinforced important elements of the Daniels mission around entrepreneurship, social responsibility and conscious capitalism.

As always, Daniels is on the move. We will never rest on our laurels, and we believe that we can always do more and do better. As a College, we strive to offer something unique among business schools: an innovative curriculum, rigorous business education rooted in ethics and true hands-on learning. Learn more about Daniels programs at daniels.du.edu. 


Dr. Daniel Connolly (connolly@du.edu) is the senior associate dean of the Daniels College of Business. He is also an associate professor of information technology with a dual appointment in the Knoebel School of Hospitality Management and in the Department of Business Information and Analytics.