Editor’s Note: Each week we publish an interview with the SMBA ’14 Student of the Week. The winner of the Student of the Week (awarded by the previous winner) sits in the front row of class and proudly displays a flag of his or her choice on the famous Tez statue. Adam Dubois is our next winner for his outstanding contributions to the NHL case study we completed in International Business
Adam Dubois: I started shortly before the 2011-12 season, in August 2011. I worked there until December 31, 2012, at which point I came out here to start the program. I very much enjoyed my time with the Wings. I worked in Youth Hockey and Fan Development Marketing. I worked heavily on the Detroit Red Wings Kids Club, a metro Detroit area youth players’ club called the Little Caesars Players’ Club, and college hockey events. I also had the privilege of working Red Wings game nights, and that was one of the awesome perks of my job.
BH: As a Michigan State alum, tell me your thoughts on conference realignment and how you feel about the recent addition to the Big Ten of junior members Nebraska, Rutgers, and Maryland.
AD: First off, I think Nebraska has established itself as a cut above junior membership, having gone to the B1G Championship game last year. They bring a lot of tradition and firepower from the Big 12, and it has been fun to get used to a new team and fanbase. Rutgers and Maryland will be interesting to track next year, as both officially join the Big Ten in 2014. Coming from the American Athletic Conference (formerly Big East) and the ACC, respectively, the two teams are not exactly what you think of when you think college football contenders. I think it was a good business move by the Big Ten to expand eastward, as that is where they had the best opportunity to capture market share.
As for the Big Ten’s realignment, from a fan’s perspective I’m not too enthused. We (Michigan State), got lumped in with the perrenial Big Ten powers like Michigan, Ohio State, and, when they’re not sanctioned, Penn State. Even though we have had a competitive team for the past few years, that is a tough gauntlet of a schedule to run through. It does make for an exciting year, though.
In respect to the entire college landscape changing, I really do think we are moving toward four 16-team superconferences. I like the idea of a college playoff and am glad the wheels have been set in motion, but I think the ultimate endgame is a NCAA basketball-style tournament. That is most easily accommodated by the four conferences with 64 teams. I think that is still a good amount of time from happening, but I think it will happen eventually.
BH: Please tell us what your favorite class is/has been thus far and what class you are most looking forward to in the fall semester.
AD: I think my favorite class thus far was the Marketing/Licensing tandem. Having worked in marketing with the Wings, I felt that was right in my comfort zone. At the same time, though, one of the reasons I came out here from Michigan was to get outside my comfort zone. With that, a class we are currently taking that has interested me very much is the Operations Management course with Dr. Reinig. It is a completely different way of looking at things from what I’m used to, and I have found it very fun to this point. The class I am most looking forward to this fall is Market Research. I think it will tie in a lot of what we’ve learned and be an asset going forward toward our 795 projects.
BH: What are your career aspirations and which class do you feel most aligns with your career goals?
AD: Aside from the cliché ‘I want to be a GM of a team,’ I think I would most like to work in either team operations or marketing. Having been a coach at a few youth clinics for hockey and golf, I really enjoy working with young adults and would love to play a part in something like what European soccer clubs have in youth academies. I also miss the marketing side of things, which is a more behind-the-scenes role in making the team a success both on and off the field/court/ice. I had some great experiences in that area with the Wings, so that might contribute to my bias a little bit. I don’t think any one class in particular aligns best. This whole program has been a great experience for me and I’ve enjoyed learning everything I can to best prepare me.
BH: As our consultancy project approaches, tell us what kind of internships you are looking for.
AD: Working my connections toward something in hockey is my first thought. I would like to think outside the box at the same time, though. I am an avid golfer, so something with a company like TaylorMade, Titleist, or others would be awesome. I am a fan of European soccer, as well, and would love to work with a club abroad, particularly in England. Some of these avenues are more reasonable than others, but if I do not try, I will never know what could happen.
BH: Lastly, would you rather throw a touchdown in a losing effort in the Super Bowl or commit six errors in a winning effort of game 7 of the World Series?
AD: Just win, baby!