Image of Dean Sharon Matusik next to "Michigan Ross" lettering

December Message from the Dean

Dear colleagues,

Happy holidays! Winter break is almost here, and I hope you will be able to spend some relaxing time with family and friends. Seeing so many of you at the Ross Holiday Party earlier this month was such a great reminder of the strength of community. We had a great turnout, and our events team once again did an exceptional job. To top it off, we were able to wrap all of the gifts donated for local Ann Arbor families through the Holiday Sharing Program. Thanks again to everyone who participated in the gift drive — either through planning, donations, or gift-wrapping. Your generosity will mean so much to the families who are in need this holiday season.

It was also a pleasure to speak at the Ross on-boarding session on Dec. 12. I truly enjoyed welcoming and talking with our new staff members and those who have been with us for a while about our mission and strategic initiatives at Michigan Ross.

Switching gears, I want to share information on some of the things on the horizon in the new year. To welcome everyone back from the holiday break, I will host a Winter Open House in the Dean’s Suite on Jan. 11 from 3:30-5 p.m. Please take a break from work that day and drop by for some winter-themed snacks and refreshments. Then, on Jan. 15, Michigan Ross celebrates the life and legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. by sponsoring the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Symposium Keynote Memorial Lecture at 10 a.m. in Hill Auditorium. Best-selling author Michelle Alexander will speak on the event theme: Transforming the Jangling Discords of our Nation. This event is open to all faculty, staff, and students, so please join us if you can. On Jan. 25 and 26, the Sanger Leadership Center will host its annual Leadership Crisis Challenge at Ross and Michigan Stadium. The Leadership Crisis Challenge is an excellent example of action-based learning, which is central to our teaching philosophy at Michigan Ross. The challenge immerses students in a simulated business and media crisis, testing their ability to strategize and work together under pressure. The students also receive personalized feedback from business leaders, faculty, and communications coaches. Between 325 and 350 students are expected to participate this year, and Sanger is looking for Ross community members to volunteer by Jan. 12 to work as judges, network with students, and run behind-the-scenes “crisis” by interacting with student teams.

Lastly, the dawn of our 2024 Centennial year is upon us. To kick off our centennial celebrations, on Jan. 17, we will have a special Centennial Toast for faculty, staff, and students in the Davidson Winter Garden at 4:15 p.m. In early January, please check out our Centennial webpage for more information about upcoming celebrations as well as reflections on special milestones. 

As another reminder, I host weekly open office hours for students, faculty, and staff. In January, the in-person office hours for faculty and staff will be held in the Winter Garden on the following dates and times:

  • Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2024: 2:00-2:45 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2024: 4:15-5:00 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2024: 3:15-4:00 p.m.

The monthly virtual office hours will be held on Thursday, Feb. 1 from 9:30-10:15 a.m. If you would like to attend the virtual office hours, please contact Heather Cooper (hmcooper@umich.edu) for an invite with the link to join. 

To close, my very best wishes for a happy and safe holiday season and new year. Over our holiday break, I hope you will all be cheering on our Michigan Wolverines football team in the Rose Bowl. With any luck, we’ll see them through to championship game in Houston. Go Blue!

Warm regards,

Sharon

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