It is not by chance that Fuqua has ranked consistently as best faculty among business schools. The school draws faculty members from around the world who have in-depth experience that cuts across all industries and functions. Many of them are currently pioneering initiatives in their field. In particular, I am going highlight two great professors that touched my experience while studying at Fuqua:
Cathy Clark: Impact Investing
I was in her course, Impact Investing, this past term in which we revised the emerging investment strategy also called triple bottom line (financial, social and environmental returns). This movement appeared recently as a way to expand the ability of nonprofit and for-profit ventures to scale their impacts on critical issues such as energy, water, climate change, community development, health, sustainable development and education.
My surprise appeared when I realized that Cathy not only teaches this class, but also is one of the leaders of this new investment trend. Through the Center for the Advancement of Social Entrepreneurship (CASE), she leads programs such as CASE i3 Fellowship for students and CASE i3 B Lab and GIIRS Research for researchers. She is co-author of “The Impact Investor,” a must-read for those interested in the area. And she serves on the US National Advisory Board on Impact Investing (NAB). In summary, she is one of THE experts on impact investing.
John Graham: Corporate Finance
I attended John Graham’s Corporate Finance class my first year in the MBA. Although I worked previously in the financial industry for couple of years, I wanted to have an update on the field. From the first, class I was delighted by his clear explanation of finance theory. But there was something even more valuable than our discussion of topics from the course books. John runs the CFO Survey which interviews CFOs around the world quarterly about economic expectations, corporate optimism and investment plans for a broad range of industries. Although the survey started in the U.S., its findings are being looked at all over the world, including my country, Chile.
With this tool, Professor Graham gives students a sense of what is happening in the real world. Contrasting theory with this evidence was especially interesting and helpful for me to understand why sometimes managers do not behave exactly as the theory mandates. And at the same time, it was valuable to realize common mistakes that companies make when evaluating their projects or setting their internal policies.
It is great to be taught by excellent professors, but priceless when they have in-depth experience in their research areas. Their insights and field work make a huge difference when it comes to students receiving a holistic learning experience. Thanks Cathy and John, for your great classes!