Business and Public Management Center
50 Sharpless Street
West Chester, PA 19383
Name: Kathy Koval
Position: Assistant Dean, Director of Business and Public Management Programs
Name: Cindy Cheyney
Position: Assistant Dean
Name: Laurie Christie
Position: Administrative Assistant to the Dean
Name: Danah Allen
Position: Communications and Impact Coordinator
Name: Paige Carey
What drew you to WCU originally? And how has WCU changed since?
"I grew up in West Chester, so that was definitely part of it. I taught at another school for about ten years before the opportunity to come home came about. One of the things I could see over a twenty-year period was the tremendous strides West Chester University had made. So, when the opportunity arose, I really wanted to be a part of the growth, quality, and opportunities that West Chester was offering. Since I've been here, one of the big changes has been the growth of CBPM. We've moved from a recognized regional state school to a national presence. We're ranked in U.S. News and World Report, so we have a national audience now. We're attracting high quality students because we have all of the accreditation of far more expensive schools, but we have the value as well. So, I've seen a great increase in the quality of our programs and our facilities"
What makes CBPM at WCU standout compared to other business and public management programs across the country?
"One of the main draws is our value. We offer most of the same things that other programs offer, but we can provide those programs without breaking the bank. One of the things we do is put the money into the education and into the educational experience of the students. We're ranked on the same level as schools that are exponentially more expensive."
What is the most fulfilling part about working at WCU and/or for CBPM?
"Working with the students. It's one of the best parts of my job. I have the opportunity to work with everyone from incoming freshman to graduate students. I can see that progression of how students grow and how they develop an attachment to the West Chester Community, which is really rewarding."
What is the cutting edge in your field and how does your research extend it?
"My area is business law, and right now it is in an upheaval. Most of my research right now is focused on the intersection between business commercial law and technology. For example, I research how your privacy is impacted by emerging technologies or how businesses are impacted by new technologies and the laws surrounding that new tech. The law usually is a little behind where the technology is. The law is essentially playing catch-up to match and grapple with these issues that are popping up in the real world, because things are moving at a much quicker pace than they were even just ten years ago."
How has your research influenced your teaching? In what ways have you been able to bring the insights of your research to your courses?
"One of the nice things about students and technology is that, many times, they're a little bit ahead of the professor. So, it's easy to relate a privacy issues on Facebook or an app on your phone to college students, because they're using these technologies all of the time. It's not something that's esoteric, it's something they're experiencing right now. So, I can take my research and apply it to the real world. I can say, ‘When you press that button on your phone, what are you doing?' In that way, it engages students quickly, and it keeps my teaching fresh because I'm not necessarily teaching the same thing all of the time. Even though we always start with the basics, I can bring in very current topics, and it engages the students as well."
Does any particular moment standout as being your favorite since working at WCU?
"I have several. It seems like once a semester or so, a former student will call me up and say, ‘I remember something you said in my class and I took your advice and it paid off in this way.' Those kinds of moments really are my favorite. I love it when students take something from their education and apply it to the real world and come back and take the time to tell me. It'll make my day, and really make my week."
What advice would you give to our incoming freshman?
"Studying is important, but you need to maintain some balance. At the same time, though, you need to remember that your job is to go to college to get an education. I see two different kinds of students that don't take that advice. One is the student who goes a little crazy, doesn't really apply themselves, and ends up paying for it down the road. There are other students who take their studying just a little too seriously. You don't need to get an A in every course. Try to, of course, but you need to have a balance between study, work, and life. If you can find that happy medium, you'll be good."
What advice would you give to our graduating seniors?
"You're not done. You should be educating yourself, whether you're continuing your education formally or informally, you should try to learn something new every day. I've been doing this since I graduated. Just remember that your education is never finished."
What is your guilty pleasure?
"I have three teenage girls, and every once in a while, I find myself humming along to music that they like that I really shouldn't."