Episode #: 98
Show: Regional 11
Airdates: April - Sept '01 (see Programming Schedule for specific airtimes)

The PhD Project - Welcome to the head of the class


  • Until recently, less than two percent of business school professors were African-American, Hispanic-American or Native American. BWN Spotlights The PhD Project, a non-profit foundation created by an alliance of corporations and higher education institutions --- and shows how it is improving diversity in business faculties and making an indelible impact on business. 
Broadcast Excerpts

Segment: The PhD Project

News Desk:

To succeed in the 21st century, businesses need a workforce that can be effective in the global economy, working with people from different backgrounds and cultures. Tomorrow's workforce is being trained today, in our nation's business schools. However, until recently, less than two percent of business school professors were African-American, Hispanic-American or Native American. Today we investigate a program that is improving diversity in business faculties€and making an indelible impact on business.

There has been a recent influx of minority business professors that is being recognized as being both historic and having a significant impact on improving business education. New research indicates that this recent development is changing racial attitudes and will stand to help America compete in the increasingly competitive global marketplace. The number of minority business professors in US business schools has reportedly increased 60% in the last six years and will triple by 2004, resulting in significant measurable improvement in business education for all students, according to a recent report released by The PhD Project. Our correspondent in Atlanta, Martha Sharon, talks with President of the KPMG Foundation, Mr. Bernard Milano, about his firm's PhD Project and its impact on tomorrow's future leaders.

Bernie Milano will talk about the history of the program

On Camera:
Because of the critical importance of graduating a diverse group of future business leaders, corporations and academic institutions have donated millions to support The PhD Project's goals.

The PhD Project reaches out to bright, highly motivated minorities, encouraging them to consider doctoral studies in business and careers as business professors. Since its inception in 1994, tens of thousands of African Americans, Hispanic Americans and Native Americans have expressed interest in The PhD Project. Each year, a conference is held to supply participants with the tools and resources necessary to engage in the doctoral process. 

Q.1 What are some of the misconceptions about becoming a business professor?

Q.2 What are some of the benefits of a diverse faculty?

To sustain a high level of commitment and a sense of connection among the minority doctoral students, the Foundation created peer associations in 1994. There are now 5 doctoral student associations covering all the major areas of business education, including Accounting, Finance, Information Systems, Management and Marketing.

John Doe left a successful career at XXX Corp. and is now pursuing a career as a business professor.

Q.3 What prompted your interest in becoming a business professor?

Q.4 What do you hope to accomplish as a business professor, for yourself, for students and for the business world at large? 

To date, the dropout rate, notably high among business Ph.D. students, is less than 5% for members of The PhD Project Doctoral Student Associations. Continuing growth of these associations is now an integral part of the PhD Project. 

Q.5 How have the DSAs helped you in your studies?

The PhD Project is reportedly helping to create an entirely new generation of minority business faculty, who will not only diversify business school faculties everywhere, but also act as role models and mentors to future generations of undergraduate and graduate students.

Q.6 What is the impact of having a minority professor like you in front of the classroom for minority students? For White students?

Q.7 How has your change in careers affected your family and home life? How did they factor into your decision to become a business professor?

Q.8 Are you satisfied with your career choice to become a business professor? Why?

On Camera: Close
As an alliance of corporations and higher education institutions, The Project was created to remedy the severe under-representation of people of color in America's business schools, and ultimately in the larger corporate community. By diversifying the faculty, it is believed that the Project will encourage more people of color to pursue business degrees and better prepare all business students for today's multicultural work environment. From Atlanta, Georgia, I'm Martha Sharon, for Business World News.




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