Mike Haggas, a development director in the MU Robert J. Trulaske, Sr. College of Business, has been awarded a 2009 Excellence in Education award. The honor is presented by the Division of Student Affairs to recognize faculty members, advisors, and academic administrators who have made significant contributions to the outside-the-classroom learning experiences of MU students.
As a member of the Trulaske College’s Advancement Office, Haggas helps to arrange or facilitates various activities within the college that contribute to the breadth and quality of students’ educational experiences. For example, he was instrumental in building a relationship with alumnus Bill Caldwell, who went on to provide funds for the college’s new Professional Development Program (PDP). As of fall 2008, all new undergraduate business students are required to take part in the PDP, which will provide them with numerous opportunities to develop the skills, attributes, and competencies that are prerequisites for success in the business world.
"I congratulate Mike on this honor," says Dean Bruce Walker. "He has done so much to assist with professional-development activities for our students. In my opinion, this award is certainly well deserved."
Other activities and programs have directly benefitted from Haggas’ efforts. For example, in fall 2008, 14 students from MU’s business school went to Wall Street where they met with alumni at major financial institutions and took part in a job-shadow program. Haggas helped to arrange the companies that hosted the students and the alumni who allowed the students to observe their activities for a half day. He is also involved with the college’s Speaker Series and Professor-for-a-Day program, in which successful business executives teach classes as guest lecturers. In addition, Haggas meets routinely with administrators to assist them in finding funding for student-focused programs and helps connect them with alumni who want to be involved with the college.
"It is very gratifying when alumni, who haven’t been back to MU in many years, tell me how impressed they are with the college and the students," says Haggas. "And it is even better when they tell me that they would like to get more engaged with the Trulaske College."