GGU, JP Morgan, Wells Capital, and Other Experts Participate in GGU Macroeconomic Seminar

A Perspective on Global Macroeconomic Trends: Catalysts and Implications [RSVP] is a free seminar that takes place at GGU on Thursday, December 14, from 4:00 pm to 6:40 pm (Room 5221) and is open to the GGU community and the public. GGU faculty members will co-moderate an accomplished panel that will discuss the complexities of the worldwide macroeconomic environment and their possible impact on the duration of the financial recovery in the U.S.

Moderators from GGU

Mohsin Hafeez, MBA was born in Pakistan and completed both his undergraduate (BBA) and graduate work at GGU (MBA, Finance and Marketing). He is currently a Financial Planning and Investment Management professional at a large international financial services firm. With over 25 years of experience in the diversified financial services arena, a part of which is internationally based, he has an in-depth understanding of the holistic dynamics of the overall global discipline. He is also a founder of a corporate executive education venture, Global Minerva Alliance. While working abroad for premier U.S. financial firms, his assignments brought him to both developed and emerging countries to study their business models for possible replication in Pakistan, an emerging economy.

Mohsin moved back to the U.S. in the late 90s, and has continued to be in finance. He was a guest speaker on the global macroeconomic trends at Ashridge Executive Education Center, UK, earlier this year, and at UC Berkeley with their International Diploma Program (IDP) students in attendance in Summer 2017, in addition to being the keynote speaker at the Fall 2017 Commencement Ceremony of IDP. Even though Mohsin, by way of training, is not an economist, Mohsin’s experience in the opening up of the traditionally closed economies of the developing world of South Asia in the 90s — and the vast exposure to pieces of global macroeconomic relevance — places him in a rare position to moderate this event. He is a Certified Financial Planner® (CFP).

Dave Kaczorowski, MBA, CFA® is Academic Program Manager at GGU and has worked in finance for more than 13 years. An experienced investment manager of private and family office portfolios, he has investment expertise in all the five major asset classes and experience in the holistic management of a family office. His most recent position was as the primary investment manager for a highly diversified family office portfolio. Prior to that position, he spent five years in the investment banking industry as an equity research associate, covering technology companies. His resume in the industry includes Signal Hill Capital, Wedbush Securities and Stifel Financial. He also spent seven years as a financial analyst in the actuarial department of Liberty Mutual Insurance Group. He is a CFA charter holder.


Global Macroeconomic Trends: Catalysts and Implications
Thursday, December 14, 2017, 4:00 pm to 6:40 pm
Location: GGU Campus, Room 5221
Free and open to GGU students, faculty, staff, alumni, and the public.
RSVP Now >>


Panelists

Joachim Fels, Global Economic Advisor, Managing Director, PIMCO

Joachim Fels is a member of the PIMCO Investment Committee and leads the company’s quarterly Cyclical Forum process. Prior to joining PIMCO in 2015, he was global chief economist at Morgan Stanley in London. Previously, he was an international economist at Goldman Sachs and a research associate at the Kiel Institute for the World Economy. Fels was also a founding member of the ECB shadow council, a member of the economic and monetary committee of the Association of German Banks, and served on the Asset Allocation Advisory Board of Volkswagen Foundation. He has 30 years of macroeconomic research experience.

Joshua Feuerman, CFA®, Managing Director, JP Morgan Asset Management

Joshua Feuerman joined the firm in 2012, after serving as Chief Risk Officer at Foundation Capital Partners. Previously, he ran his own investment firm, Btn Partners, where he managed a quantitative market neutral hedge fund. Prior to founding Btn Partners, he was Vice Chairman of the Investment Committee and Head of Global Quantitative Equities at Deutsche Asset Management. Josh was also Head of Active International Equities at State Street Global Advisors in Boston and an adjunct lecturer in the Finance Department at Pace University.

Gary Schlossberg, Vice President & Senior Economist, Wells Capital Management Inc.

Gary Schlossberg analyzes the economic, financial, and investment environment for Wells Capital Management — a fee-based, institutional money manager with over $340 billion in assets — and for other investment and banking groups within Wells Fargo & Co. He participates regularly in meetings with the organization’s customers and internal professionals, and is a member of Wells Capital’s Investment Policy and Liquidity Management strategy committees. Prior to joining Wells Fargo in 1974, Mr. Schlossberg worked as a researcher at the U.S. Treasury and Federal Reserve Board covering international economic conditions.

Axel Merk, President and CIO, Merk Investments

Founder of the firm bearing his name, Axel Merk is an expert on macroeconomic trends. He is a sought-after speaker, contributor, and author. He holds a B.A. in Economics (magna cum laude) and a M.Sc. in Computer Science from Brown University. Merk has grown Merk Investments into an investment advisory firm offering investment funds and advisory services on liquid global markets including domestic and international equities, fixed income, commodities, and currencies.


Upcoming Seminars Cover Leadership, Analytics, Cybersecurity, Cannabis Policy, and Business Ethics

The Ageno School of Business is offering a series of seminars community at large covering timely, interdisciplinary, and applied topics.

  • Leadership models and personal development
  • Macroeconomics and the expansion of the economy
  • Business ethics
  • Cybersecurity
  • Analytics applied to fraud detection and sports
  • Cannabis law and policy in California

All currently registered Ageno Schoool of Business graduate students are required to register for and participate in one of these seminars. These graduate students have priority for registrations, but space is limited for each seminar. The sessions are open to GGU undergraduates and alumni as well.

Know Your Brain, Boost Your Effectiveness

Marcia Ruben, PhD

Monday, December 11, 2017

4:00 PM – 6:40 PM
Room 6208
Sold Out!

6:50 PM – 9:30 PM
Room 6208
Sold Out!

Analytics for Fraud Detection: Car Injury Fraud and AML Predictive Analytics

Prof. Sia Zadeh

Monday, December 11, 2017
5:00 PM to 6:40 PM
Room 5224 and online*
REGISTER >>

The Mindful Executive – Becoming the COO of Your Mind

Lori Granger, LMFT

Tuesday, December 12, 2017
4:00 PM – 5:30 PM
Room 5221 (Sold out!) and online*

The “Gig Economy – What Is It? And What Does It Mean for You?

Tom Cushing, JD, MBA

Tuesday, December 12, 2017
6:50 PM to 9:30 PM
Room 3208 and online*
REGISTER >>

Applying Analytics to Win in Sports and Business

Dr. Gordon Swartz, Dean of GGU’s Edward S. Ageno School of Business

Wednesday, December 13, 2017
6:50 PM to 9:30 PM
Room 3214 (In-person only)
REGISTER>>

Cyber-Security Update – Interdisciplinary IT and Accounting

Ric Jazaie, CPA, Director of MS in Accounting (pictured) and Ross Millerick, Director of MS in IT Management

Wednesday, December 13, 2017
5:00 PM to 6:40 PM
Room 6208 and online*
REGISTER >>

Commercial and Social Justice Opportunities in California’s Cannabis Marketplace

Dominic Ripoli (JD ’15) and expert panel

(Interdisciplinary: Law and Business)
Wednesday, December 13, 2017
6:50 PM – 9:30 PM
Room 3208 and online*
REGISTER >>

Global Macroeconomics Trends: Catalysts and Implications

Mohsin Hafeez, MBA, CFP® (Pictured) & David Kaczorowski, MBA, CFA®, Moderators

Thursday, December 14, 2017
4:00 PM to 6:40 PM
Room 5221
REGISTER >>

 

 

 

 



*In-person and online attendance for students
: If you are registered for on-campus courses, you should participate in an on-campus seminar. If all of your classes are online through GGU’s eLearning campus, you may participate in a seminar via Zoom conference. Ageno graduate students have priority for registrations, but spaces in each seminar are limited.

Our Examination of HP’s 3D-Printing Business — Part of an Award-Winning Financial Analysis Presentation

By Gannon Kim (BS,  Accounting Concentration ’17)

Earlier this year, I was a part of a student team representing the GGU Investment Research Club (IRC) that won the regional CFA Institute Research Challenge  (prevailing over graduate schools across Northern California). The competition required teams to research a publically traded company, create a written report, and deliver a group presentation to a panel of financial services professionals. During this year’s competition, we were tasked with analyzing HP Inc. and presenting a buy, hold, or sell recommendation of its stock.

Part of our presentation included an analysis of HP’s 3D printing business, which we felt was a promising endeavor for the company and the key to its future revenue growth.

The portion of the 3D-printing market that prints in plastic material – rather than metal – is of interest to HP. The lucrative nature of these types of products (along with soon-to-be expiring patents of the technology) has attracted a huge upswing of new entrants to the market. This threatens the positioning of current market stakeholders: Stratasys (addressing high-end, commercial-grade needs) and 3D Systems.

HP’s First 3D Printer

HP released their first 3D printer in 2016, the HP Multi-Jet Fusion 3D Printing Solution. The product is bridging the gap between high-end (Stratasys) and entry-level product offerings (those made by 3D Systems and start-ups) — by creating one of the world’s fastest, production-ready machines.

Our team determined that  HP’s ability to leverage their supply chain & production scalability, partnerships, and brand reputation will help them — in the words of HP’s 3-D Printing President — “disrupt the $12 trillion manufacturing industry and […] democratize manufacturing.”

In terms of the research process, one take-away from this experience was recognizing the power of conducting a ‘channel check’ — i.e. going into retail stores & interacting with sales staff or asking experts (such as Professor Jain) about their insight about a company.

Consulting with an Industry Expert

As most of the team members had limited familiarity with the 3D printer products & its market, we turned to the insight of Pravin Jain, a mechanical engineering professor at Santa Clara University. His in-the-field expertise provided us with a better understanding of HP’s strategy for 3D products. HP aims to build an ecosystem for its 3D printers and has become very involved in the product development process (which includes the development into the software, material inputs & supplies, and 3D-scanning process) and has since reached out to its academic partners to take part as well.

Drivers of HP’s promising future include the strategic and synergistic alliances that it makes with software companies (e.g. Autodesk, Siemens in order to create a more streamlined product), materials suppliers, and users (for direct input on how the device is being used, performance & improvement benchmarks, etc.). From our channel check, we found that HP is approaching manufacturing businesses (i.e. Nike, BMW, Johnson&Johnson) and research institutions to test its technology.

Overall Analysis of HP

There are three key points that are worth highlighting about HP overall.

1. It is financially “healthy,” having a high cash balance and is looking to return it to investors (making significant stock repurchases in the future).

2. It has a strong management team, with the leadership of CEO Dion Wiesler who adds a wealth of industry experience through his roles in Acer and Lenovo consumer electronics divisions.

3. It maintains dominant positioning in the core business (printers and PCs) – and has the potential for the 3D printer business unit to help the firm grow organically.

However, we are concerned about the state of its core business,  as the market has matured and HP faces increased global competition. Revenue has also been declining (since 2015). In addition, the company derives more than half its revenue abroad and has justifiably invested to create a global supply chain – sourcing materials, labor, and clients from other countries. By consequence, any significant changes to U.S. foreign policy can present some amount of geopolitical risk (but was not predictable at the time, particularly with a transition of a new U.S. executive administration).

Our presentation for the competition was more “cautionary” in nature, and we felt that prospective investors probably should not “buy-in” while current holders of HP stock should not head for the exits.

Research Process 

In terms of the “research process,” one takeaway from this experience was recognizing the power of conducting a channel check – i.e. going into retail stores & interacting with sales staff or asking experts (such as Professor Jain) about their insight about a company. Of course, reading online reports can give a good picture, but there is more to gain when it is supplemented by direct interactions.

Hold Recommendation

Our investment rating for HP was “Hold” (neither bull nor bear) because there was quite a lot of positive/negative trade-offs taking place. Our presentation for the competition was more “cautionary” in nature, and we felt that prospective investors probably should not “buy-in” while current holders of HP stock should not head for the exits.


San Francisco CFA Investment CompetitionInvestment Research Club members with Finance Professor Dave Kaczorowski, CFA (competition mentor) at far left. Continuing left to right: Zhe-Yuan Zhang, William Xu, Gannon Kim (author of this blog post), and Hemal Patel.


Ask about the undergraduate Finance Concentration or MS in Finance degree >>

International Graduate Students at GGU in San Francisco

In honor of International Education Week, we’d like to share the stories of students from overseas who are in graduate school at GGU’s San Francisco campus. Among the international students from over 46 countries are:

Tsovinar Yenokyan (MS, Marketing ’18), Armenia

international-armenian-student

Tsovinar has been driven to succeed from an early age. She started to work at age 16, which was not common in her native country of Armenia, and began what she calls her, “long-lasting relationship with marketing.” Two years later, she took a Brand Manager position at Starcom Mediavest in Armenia.

Each student has an advisor and mine has been helpful in answering questions about student Visas and my curriculum.

Tsovinar’s story >>


Jatin Jaiswal (MBA, Marketing Concentration ’17), India

Jatin made his way from India to Golden Gate University in part to take advantage of San Francisco’s innovative technology environment. He landed an internship at a local start-up called FinTech School where he applies skills he picked up at GGU such as SEO, email marketing, and social media. But he says a big part of his education has been learning how to collaborate with people with different backgrounds and personalities.

Steve Jobs said that people are there to help you and all you have to do is ask. In San Francisco, I had coffee with people from Salesforce just by writing them through LinkedIn.  You may not get a job, but it leads to the next thing.

Jatin’s story >>


Zhaoqian (Anna) Zeng (MBA, Supply Chain ’17), China

Zhaoqian (Anna) Zeng is from China where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Law from Shanghai’s Customs College. After working in import and export operations, she wanted to expand her career. Golden Gate University provided a very comprehensive program in Supply Chain that covered the aspects of operations she found the most interesting: strategy and tactical operations.

San Francisco is a very welcoming place and people from different cultures feel comfortable here. There are young, energetic people here who are absorbing new information every day. These are the reasons I want to stay here after I complete my degree.

Anna’s story >>


Hussain Aziz Sham (MS, Marketing ’19), India / Dubai

Hussain a member of the Student IT Advisory Board, a Graduate Student Assistant in the GGU eLearning Department, and Vice President of the GGU Marketing Club. The members of the club participated in the Marketing Edge competition this year, which challenges student teams to produce a marketing plan to solve a real marketing problem posed by a real company.

 

At GGU, you will have the chance to meet, collaborate and make friendship with students who come from all over the world – India, the Middle East, China, and others — and bring their unique experience into classroom discussions and projects.

Hussain’s story >>


Learn how GGU supports its international students from start to finish >>

What Does A Tax Accountant Really Do? Alumni Debunk Stereotypes

In this short video, alumni of GGUs Master’s Degree in Taxation program go beyond the “number crunching” stereotype to discuss what a tax accounting career is really like. The interviewees are now working at Apercen Partners, Cisco Systems, and two “Big Four” Firms: PricewaterhouseCoopers (now PwC) and Ernst & Young (now EY).

Most mention communication with clients and coworkers as rewarding and essential to the job. As Wylan Lau, Tax Senior at EY, says: “[Job interview skills] such as how to present yourself, how to do public speaking, and how to talk to people..are relevant now in talking to clients [and] colleagues…Those are things I learned when I was at GGU.”


Request information about the Master of Science in Taxation program >>

 

Public Administration in Action: GGU Student Responds to North Bay Fires

Most all students at GGU have every-day responsibilities such as taking care of children or holding down a full-time job. One student of the Executive Master in Public Administration (EMPA) program, Jason Holley, had to respond to a dramatic outside circumstance when the North Bay fires began to ravage a large portion of Napa County last month.

As the Interim City Manager of Napa County’s City of American Canyon, he collaborated with the County’s Emergency Management staff on the opening of an emergency shelter and facilitated real-time communication with residents. Reducing panic and giving citizens options could save lives.

To add to the pressure, shelters at neighboring counties were full, wind-whipped flames were approaching his Napa County home, and he was in his first week in his new role at the City of American Canyon. “It made for a very chaotic first week on the job!” The shelter was open for six days and housed as many as 68 people who were evacuated from their homes.


“All those entering the EMPA program are contacted to address the balance between the demands of coursework and quality of life.”

—Dr. Mick McGee, Associate Professor of Public Administration


Fortunately, the fires did not reach his home or the City of American Canyon. He was also delighted to see, “the extraordinary volunteer effort of the citizens as the community come together, rather than fractured, in a time of crisis.”

Work-Life Balance for GGU Students

Two years in a row, GGU has won a national award for its dedication to adult learners who have outside family and work commitments. “All those entering the EMPA program are contacted to address the balance between the demands of coursework and quality of life,” says Dr. Mick McGee, Associate Professor of Public Administration at GGU. “All obstacles to satisfactory completion of coursework are addressed, and solutions established. Accommodations are always made in favor of the student.”


“It is the goal of all the EMPA instructors to provide instruction and innovative ideas that students can use the next month, week, or day. Especially in a time of crisis.”

—Dr. Mick McGee, Associate Professor of Public Administration


The North Bay fires were not the only crisis to affect EMPA students this fall. Two online students living in Florida and North Carolina were affected by Hurricane Irma. Over the years, military service members or FBI agents have duties that take them away from their online or in-person classroom.

Dr. McGee continues: “It is the goal of all the EMPA instructors to provide instruction and innovative ideas that students can use the next month, week, or day. Especially in a time of crisis.”



About Jason Holley

Jason Holley is completing an Executive Masters of Public Administration at Golden Gate University, with an eye toward expanding his knowledge beyond his roots as an engineering and design expert. A graduate of Polytechnic San Luis Obispo with a B.S. degree in Bioresource and Agricultural Engineering, he has worked for the City of Napa and joined American Canyon in 2013, where he began as public works director–managing the county’s utilities, enginering, financial and technology departments. During his tenure, the City implemented an award-winning “Zero Water Footprint” Policy that facilitated $2.0M in private capital funding resulting in a 25% reduction in water demand city-wide in response to the drought. He is a California Registered Civil Engineer, an ICC Certified Building Official, and California Office of Emergency Services Disaster Service Worker.


Request information about the Executive Master of Public Administration program >>

Videoconference: Join the Discussion on the New U.S. Tax Proposals

By Fred Sroka, Dean of the GGU School of Accounting & Bruce F. Braden School of Taxation

The proposed Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 has grabbed national attention.  We’ve prepared three PowerPoint slide decks to help you discuss the major proposals with your clients.

Download PowerPoint Presentations

Free Videoconferences for Tax Professionals

Next Tuesday, we are hosting one-hour videoconferences to share perspectives on the impact of the proposed changes. If you would like to join any of the discussions, please register using the links below:

Individual Taxpayer
November 14, 2017
11:00am – 12:00pm
Register now >>

Business Taxpayer
November 14, 2017
12:00pm – 1:00pm
Register now >>

International Taxpayer   
November 14, 2017
1:00pm – 2:00pm
Register now >>

If you can’t join but have suggestions or concerns, please let me know.


 

What is Forensic Accounting? Hear from This GGU Student in a New Video

Joey Byers will graduate this year with a Bachelor of Science in Business with an Accounting Concentration. One of his aspirations is to pursue fraud cases as a forensic accountant for a government agency. In this short video, he discusses his attraction to forensic accounting: “a field in which you become a number detective.”

Byers’ next step is to tackle the forensic accounting concentration in GGU’s Master of Science in Accounting program. The concentration was designed by Director of Accounting Programs Ric Jazaie, a veteran of forensic investigations at the FBI and his consulting firm.


Request information about GGU’s accounting programs >>

Global Macroeconomic Trends Seminar Attracts Finance Luminaries to GGU’s San Francisco Campus

Experts from PIMCO, JP Morgan, Wells Capital, and Merk Investments Bring Real-World Experience to Audience

The longevity of the current recovery in the U.S.—the second-longest in its history—is creating uncertainty among some members of the financial community. Adjunct Finance Professor Mohsin Hafeez, MBA, CFP®, has invited a distinguished panel to a GGU seminar in December to discuss the complexities of the worldwide macroeconomic environment and their possible impact on the recovery’s duration.

Mohsin Hafeez

Mohsin explains: “Economic recoveries don’t necessarily die of old age; someone, or something, kills them. They respond to worldwide macroeconomic trends, central bank policies, geopolitical vagaries such as Brexit, wasteful excesses, a potential NOKO disaster, an overriding wave of uncalled for nationalism and populism, and financial snafus such as the dot-com burst or the mortgage-driven crash in 2008.” Join us for this special event to hear more insights from Mohsin and those of his fellow luminaries.

A Perspective on Global Macroeconomic Trends: Catalysts and Implications [RSVP] will include a panel discussion with:

Joachim Fels
Global Economic Advisor, Managing Director
PIMCO

 

 

Joshua Feuerman, CFA®
Managing Director
JP Morgan Asset Management

 

 

Gary Schlossberg
Senior Economist
Wells Capital Management Inc.

 

 

Axel Merk
President & CIO
Merk Investments

 

 

 
Mohsin, with several years of global experience in banking, is currently a Financial Planning professional at a large international financial services firm, and a founder of a corporate executive education venture, Global Minerva Alliance (www.globalminervaalliance.com). He will kick off the event with an overview of the global macroeconomic trends and the perceived catalysts and implications. Dave Kaczorowski, MBA, CFA®, Adjunct Professor and endowment investor, will co-moderate the panel with Mohsin.

The panelists will, taking a cue from Mark Twain, next discuss the question: “Are the reports of the death of the economic recovery an exaggeration? Or is there some veracity in them?” We invite the attendees to ask questions and join the discussion when we open the Q&A session. The free seminar will be of interest to all GGU students, faculty, staff, alumni, and the public.

RSVP Now

Global Macroeconomic Trends: Catalysts and Implications
Thursday, December 14, 2017, 4:00 pm to 6:40 pm
Location: GGU Campus, Room 5221
Free and open to GGU students, faculty, staff, alumni, and the public.
Click Here >>


Request information about GGU’s advanced business degrees >>

To Create a New Amazon Village, It Takes a Graduate Degree (or Two, or Three…)


By Terry Connelly, Dean Emeritus of the Ageno School of Business

Amazon made headlines with its stupendous 1300% “earnings beat” for its most recent quarter that moved the company’s stock up over 10% in just one day! But before that, the folks from Seattle made perhaps even more consequential news by opening a competition to American cities for selection to host the second Amazon headquarters (“HQ2”), with the prospect of 50,000 new jobs coming to their immediate region and total investment of upwards of $5 billion, which has provoked a bidding war among metropolitan areas across the U.S. and even Canada.

Just what kind of expertise and insight is involved in this exciting business venture that could create a local enterprise supporting a family population the size of a Bay Area city such as Santa Clara or Hayward?

Big Decisions, Big Data, Big Money

First, let’s consider the highest-level executive judgment involved, integrating all the various dimensions of Amazon’s long-term business strategy, growth plans, political interests, financial capacity, artificial intelligence involvement, staffing innovations, and logistical structures. Add to that current experiments with brick-and-mortar stores, drone and in-home package delivery, and wholesale pharmacy licenses, just to name a few.

Such integrative thinking calls for at least a first-rate Master of Business Administration program taught by real-world veterans of both the commercial and academic arenas. An Executive MBA program might well be even more apt, especially if it involves hands-on experience with current business problems involving entrepreneurial challenges faced by world-scale as well as start-up enterprises.

Amazon’s leadership team for this exciting project would need to involve also expertise in Business Analytics to frame the entire scenario for planning an executing such a complex and multi-faceted undertaking, involving detailed assessment of multiple locations and logistical considerations, evaluating over 200 proposals from municipalities against a defined set of financial and other criteria that set Amazon’s objectives in advance with precision and confidence.

Financial considerations would, of course, be front-and-center for AMZN given a $5 billion project far more complex than building a multi-million-dollar sports stadium or even a Disney theme park. A master’s degree in Finance would be necessary to make the team tasked to determine exactly how this project would be funded and the rate-of-return benchmarks to be used not only in scoping the project physically and evaluating the various forms of incentives to AMZN offered by the competing communities to determine which are in the long-term interests of the company.

People Power

Speaking of employees, a master’s degree in Human Resources would be extremely helpful in defining the criteria for the type of community where Amazon would like to locate its large workforce, ranging from top-level world-class senior management to the newest entry-level trainee. The company was explicit in the kind of social environment that it wants for this large-scale operation. The community’s engagement in sophisticated workforce development programs such as those that exist in Silicon Valley – supported by many established businesses in the area as well as educational and public service institutions – would be a prime consideration for the company’s senior HR professionals. Similarly, Amazon’s commitment to racial and gender diversity in hiring and advancement would be relevant in evaluating which location is most likely to advance the company’s goals in this area.

At the employee level, a Financial Planning graduate degree would come in handy eventually for assessing the cost-of-living considerations relevant to the tens of thousands of employees that Amazon’s HR department will need to attract a retain with compensation and benefits structures appropriate to the location – and, in the same vein, assess the same metrics in choosing the location most likely to attract the best and brightest employees!

Getting It Done

The design, planning, construction and operation of the new headquarters is a massive undertaking that would require the most sophisticated Project Management knowledge and skills that a master’s degree in that field would provide. The project leadership would have to involved from well before the word “go” in designing criteria to evaluate the optimal-location considerations in terms of design talent, land availability and cost, municipal services quality and availability, labor capacity and supply access to materials, weather patterns, and all other issues relevant to the company’s timetable.

Once designed, the project would have to be executed with attention to the desired timetable; contractor management; compliance with building codes and ordinances, labor standards, and clean-energy objectives and other resource-consumption considerations; local and regional transportation polices and interests; as well as community focus on traffic and public transport routing and planning — for necessary employee housing and related facilities such as schools. In these connections, professionals with a master’s degree in Public Administration would be very helpful in negotiating the nuances of local political and governmental authorities as well as federal and state agencies with stakeholder interest in the headquarters project design and execution.

Nuts and Bolts

A master’s-level education in IT Management would also be critical in terms of specifications for the fiber-optic network and related technology infrastructure required to meet Amazon’s standards and assure seamless and efficient communications between HQ2 and HQ1 — as well as a vast array of warehouses, logistical network, customers, suppliers.

Finally, but crucially, linking all of these complex operations, a master’s degree level of expertise in Supply Chain Management would be essential to get the most value out of the new headquarters in terms of Amazon’s multifaceted connections to its suppliers, merchants, and customers. By the time the new headquarters is fully operational, Amazon might well be operating its own cargo airline delivering food and pharmaceuticals as well as merchandise the company offers now.

What an exciting opportunity for anyone who could in the next year begin pursuing any range of graduate degrees that are so integral to the success of Amazon’s headquarters project. You might even call it a “Prime” opportunity!


About Terry Connelly

terry-connellyTerry Connelly is an economic expert and Dean Emeritus of the Ageno School of Business at Golden Gate University. With more than 30 years experience in investment banking, law and corporate strategy on Wall Street and abroad, Terry analyses the impact of government politics and policies on local, national and international economies, examining the interaction of global financial markets, the U.S. banking industry (and all of its regulatory agencies), the Federal Reserve, domestic employment levels and consumer reactions to the changing economic tides. Terry holds a law degree from NYU School of Law and his professional history includes positions with Ernst & Young Australia, the Queensland University of Technology Graduate School of Business, New York law firm Cravath, Swaine & Moore (corporate, securities and litigation practice in New York and London), global chief of staff at Salomon Brothers investment banking firm and Cowen & Company’s investments, where he served as CEO. In conjunction with Golden Gate University President Dan Angel, Terry co-authored Riptide: The New Normal In Higher Education (2011). Riptidedeconstructs the changing landscape of higher education in the face of the for-profit debacle, graduation gridlock, and staggering student debt, and asserts a new, sustainable model for progress. Terry is a board member of the Public Religion Research Institute, a Washington, DC think tank and polling organization, and the Cardiac Therapy Foundation in Palo Alto, California. Terry lives in Palo Alto with his wife.


Request information about GGU’s advanced degrees in business >>