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September 2014

Johnson and Montgomery attend Kentucky SHRM Conference

Johnson and Montgomery at the SHRM Conference

Two EKU human resource management students, Jessica Johnson, a senior from Richmond, and Chelsea Montgomery, attended the 30th Southern Kentucky SHRM Conference held Sept. 24-26, at the Kentucky International Convention Center in Louisville.

The conference covered several issues, from how to remain professional in such a field of expertise, to how to navigate business law in human resources. The students got to network, receiver relevant training, and as the advice of professionals in the field. Because it was such a beneficial experience, they hope to influence more students to attend or volunteer next year.

Chelsea Montgomery, a senior from McKee, Ky., shared her experience; “I found the conference to be very educational. We were able to participate in several sessions of our choice, while doing some professional networking. All of the people were very nice and eager to give us career advice. It was a great experience and I would absolutely recommend other students to take advantage of this opportunity. I will definitely attend the conference next year, hopefully as an HR professional.”

Jessica Johnson, a senior from Richmond, said: “I had some great experiences while volunteering at the 30th Annual KY SHRM Conference. We were able to receive very relevant, high-speed training while working the conferences. Everyone was extremely nice and welcoming. Even though I'm graduating this fall, they said I could come back and work the conference next year.”

Group advisor Dr. Allen Engle explained, "Maroon SHRM is a student-led organization that allows students interested in human resource issues to gain additional insights about the profession, network with other interested students and members of the Bluegrass HR professional community, provide service projects for the region and generally socialize during the academic year. Annually each group determines the relative mix of educational enhancement (via guest speakers, conference attendance, etc.), regional service (via fundraisers and area service work projects) and social activities. Maroon SHRM is open to any student, in any major interested in HR issues. This combination of rigorous theoretical review, hands on application, and a focus on the professional practices and standards of human resources has long been a hallmark of the School of Business’ Human Resource Option.”

- written by McKenna Bowling, Student Assistant
EKU College of Business and Technology

2014-15 Patterson Scholars Announced

2014-15 Patterson Scholars

The Department of Management, Marketing and International Business is pleased to announce Patterson Scholars for the 2014-15 academic year.

The Patterson Scholarship is the largest scholarship on Eastern Kentucky University’s campus. Since its establishment in 1997, the endowment is made available to student applicants who have already declared a major in Business and Marketing Education, General Business, Management, or Marketing.

2014-15 Patterson Scholars:

  • Katie Beck (Senior-General Business), Guston, KY
  • Chris Bunge (Senior-PGA/Golf Management), Lexington, KY
  • Shaun Cawley (Junior-Management), Florence, KY
  • Macy Huff (Senior-Management), Mt. Sterling, KY
  • Jordan Koeller (Junior-PGA/Golf Management), New London, WI
  • Austin Molen (Junior-PGA/Golf Management), Florence, KY
  • Anthony Barrett (Sophomore-PGA/Golf Management), Effingham, IL
  • Daniel Bevins (Freshman-General Business), Pikeville, KY
  • Victoria Dircksen (Sophomore-Marketing), Louisville, KY
  • Rachel Droege (Sophomore-Marketing), Richmond, KY
  • Rosario Falzone (Freshman-PGA/Golf Management), Nashville, TN
  • Sarah Franklin (Sophomore-General Business), Richmond, KY
  • Kaitlyn Hale (Freshman-PGA/Golf Management), Owensboro, KY
  • Craig Hicks (Junior-PGA/Golf Management), Aylett, VA
  • Ross Holtsclaw (Freshman-PGA/Golf Management), Fort Wayne, IN
  • Brad Jacques (Freshman-PGA/Golf Management), Fond du Lac, WI
  • Tim Lumbrix (Freshman-General Business), Louisville, KY
  • Evangeline Monroe (Junior-General Business & Management), Lexington, KY
  • John Rudyanksi (Freshman-PGA/Golf Management), Brodhead, WI
  • Dalton Stanley (Freshman-Management), Pikeville, KY
  • Ethan Yerkins (Senior-Management), Phenix City, AL

Each student will be awarded $1,000 per semester for two semesters. Requirements for the scholarship are a minimum 24 ACT score and a 3.0 cumulative GPA. Students submit three letters of reference and consideration is given to evidence of leadership and work-related activities.

While this scholarship may be renewed annually, the endowment is entirely conditional upon student involvement in the following areas:

  • Academics
  • Leadership
  • Networking/Social
  • Recruitment
  • Service

Each student scholar is required to attend at least one Spotlight event to meet with students and answer questions about Management, Marketing and International Business to fulfill the service obligation. “They are the face of the department,” stated Kevin Cumiskey. The Patterson Scholarship Committee is Co-Chaired by Kevin Cumiskey and Beth Polin.

Aside from recruitment and service obligations, student scholars are also expected to take on leadership roles in campus student organizations and strive to maintain a high level of academic success.

Find out more about the Patterson Scholarship at:

EKU Junior Wins 2014 Collegiate Business Concept Challenge

l-r: Erekson, Moncrief, Elrod, Traver, Lawson, and Benson

College students and cheap, easy-to-prepare food. They just go together.

So it’s only fitting that an Eastern Kentucky University student won the 2014 Excellence in Entrepreneurship Collegiate Business Concept Challenge competition for his business venture idea centered on – you might have guessed it – ramen noodles.

Colin Elrod, a junior international business major from Richmond, earned a $1,000 cash prize after pitching an idea for a new business venture, “Mochi,” a casual-style restaurant that serves fresh, locally-sourced food as an alternative to traditional fast food.

“While most people are familiar with ramen noodles as a cheap, college student meal, we intend to provide the type of high-quality, customizable ramen common in Japan,” Elrod declared in his business proposal. “Our customers will have the option to create their own ramen based on the choice of noodles, broths and toppings.”

The idea was one of 18 business concepts presented by student teams from six Kentucky colleges and universities at this year’s Collegiate Business Concept Challenge (CBCC). The competition is a component of the annual Excellence in Entrepreneurship Awards program, held Sept. 8 at the Center for Rural Development in Somerset, and encourages student entrepreneurs to build their skills as the region’s next generation of entrepreneurs and business leaders.

The idea came to Elrod when he and a cousin were looking for somewhere to eat in downtown Chicago and realized there were no ramen shops.

He entered the competition hoping to get valuable input on his idea. Elrod received overwhelmingly positive feedback and much more.

Kevin Cumiskey, instructor in EKU’s Department of Management, Marketing and International Business, served as Elrod’s faculty adviser.

“It was a pleasure to work with Colin and the CBCC,” Cumiskey said. “It was my first experience working with the CBCC, and I viewed it as a great opportunity for students to develop an entrepreneurial spirit. The CBCC provides individuals with the confidence and belief it takes to be successful as an entrepreneur.”

Elrod said Cumiskey was “a big help. He looked over all my business plans and helped me steer things toward making sense.”

Now a client of EKU’s Business Accelerator ( in the University’s Business and Technology Center, through which he is receiving additional guidance (as well as office space) as he moves his plan forward, Elrod is buoyed by the award that served to “validate” his business concept.

Elrod’s only prior exposure to the restaurant business was a five-month stint working at a Japanese restaurant in Lexington, so he has also counseled with a Richmond restaurateur to gain even more practical insights.

The 2006 Madison Central graduate, son of Preston and Carol Mochizuki-Elrod, plans to enter his concept in more competitions, including the IDEA State U competition next Spring, when he also heads to one of EKU’s partner institutions, Rikkyo University in Tokyo, Japan for a semester to enhance his International Business studies.

CBCC Committee Chairman Jim Tackett said the increased interest among the region’s students, faculty, and colleges and universities in participating in the CBCC “further illustrates the importance of entrepreneurship in today’s world. This competition provides an opportunity for students to pitch an idea and receive valuable feedback from those in the field who may truly have a role in the concept’s future success. We are growing our own entrepreneurs!”

The CBCC is presented in partnership with EKU’s College of Business and Technology, Kentucky Highlands Investment Cooperative, the Center for Rural Development, Berea College’s Entrepreneurship for the Public Good, and Lindsey Wilson College’s Entrepreneurship Center.

For more information about EKU’s International Business program, visit

Photo caption: From left are: Dr. Tom Erekson, dean of EKU’s College of Business and Technology; Ray Moncrief, executive vice president and chief operating officer, Kentucky Highlands Investment Corporation; Colin Elrod, winner of the 2014 Collegiate Business Concept Challenge; Brett Traver, executive director, Southeast Kentucky Economic Development Corporation; Lonnie Lawson, president and CEO, The Center for Rural Development; and EKU President Michael Benson.

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