College awards - students

Outstanding Doctoral Student Award

Derick Davis

Derick Davis, a fourth-year doctoral student in marketing, "is one of the best young researchers that our program has produced, a very promising teacher, and a solid department citizen," wrote marketing department head Kent Nakamoto.

Davis' research makes strong theoretical contributions to consumer behavior studies, Nakamoto said, by showing "how the use of common features of language, such as homophones (e.g., 'bye' and 'buy') or alliteration, can have significant effects on later judgments or choices."

With two co-authored papers published in the Journal of Consumer Research in 2012 — "an exceptional accomplishment for any student at this stage" — Davis has a "research record that places him among the top students nationwide" in the job market last fall.

Davis has given 11 presentations at national conferences of the Association for Consumer Research and the Society for Consumer Psychology. He has received two Pamplin research grants and was selected to represent his department as the 2011 AMA-Sheth Consortium Fellow at an annual meeting of the top doctoral students and research faculty in marketing.

He has taught Marketing Research, receiving favorable ratings for all three course sections. "Both peers and faculty regard him as a model doctoral student," Nakamoto said.

"He is always willing to undertake department service and does so cheerfully. He is a consistent contributor to our department and to every aspect of our doctoral program." Davis has accepted an assistant professor position with the University of Miami (Florida), starting fall 2013.

Outstanding Doctoral Dissertation

Gretchen Schaupp

Gretchen Schaupp's dissertation makes "an important and completely original contribution to the literature" in how psychological contracts are studied, wrote associate professor of management Terry Cobb, who chaired her dissertation committee.

While the study of psychological contracts (the implicit exchange relationships employees develop with their employers) — and what happens when they are breached — is extensive, "the literature has been severely limited by its reliance on field studies and survey methodologies alone," Cobb wrote.

Schaupp, who received her Ph.D. in management in May 2012, designed and produced "an experimental method to develop psychological contracts in the laboratory for the first time and, as a result, was able to study the causal effects tying contract type to breach for the first time," he said.

"This one contribution alone has allowed Gretchen, and now others in the field, to study causal connections between contract elements and outcomes never before studied and address theoretical issues that, heretofore, could not have been proposed."

Her original study design, he said, also allowed her to focus on a new construct that largely lay out of the reach of earlier work: the impact of "exchange congruence," or the extent to which psychological contracts, their breach, and their attempted repair are congruent in terms of resources involved — for example, the effects of transactional resources being used to repair relational breach and vice versa.

"In addition to kudos from a leading researcher and theoretician in the field, her work was very well received at the Academy of Management meeting last year."

Schaupp's study is titled ""An Experimental Study of Psychological Contract Breach: The Effects of Exchange Congruence in the Employer-Employee Relationship."

Doctoral Student Research Award

Hanko Zeitzmann

Hanko Zeitzmann is a "particularly promising young researcher," wrote management associate professor Don Hatfield.

Hatfield wrote that, as Zeitzmann's co-author on conference presentations and chairman of his dissertation committee, he has seen his former student develop "a deep understanding" of the main academic research problems in his area, clearly identify theoretical and empirical gaps, and raise relevant research questions. "As a researcher, he has shown deep critical thinking skills."

A recently published study that Zeitzmann co-authored focused on corporate social responsibility and orphan drug development.

Zeitzmann's co-authors have praised his contributions to the project, "from identifying a relevant research question to developing and testing research hypotheses and analyzing implications of the results," Hatfield said. "In fact, his contributions during the course of the study got him promoted to second author."

Zeitzmann's research approach "offers value to both academic research and business practice," Hatfield said. "What is noticeable is his ability to contain a clear research focus throughout various projects. At the same time he is able to substantially contribute to an array of different research agendas."

Zeitzmann, who received his Ph.D. in management in December 2012, is now an assistant professor of management and strategy at Zayed University in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

Graduate Student Teaching Award

Eric Negangard

Eric Negangard, a fourth-year doctoral student in accounting and information systems, has taught multiple sections of three different undergraduate courses and recently designed and taught a new Forensic Accounting course for the department.

"Eric is consistently one of our students' favorite instructors," wrote department head Reza Barkhi. Students seek out the sections he is teaching despite the significant effort that he requires of them, Barkhi said. "While maintaining a strong focus on research, Eric's commitment to the classroom is unparalleled."

Negangard has averaged above 4.75 (on a 5.0 scale) in student evaluations across all sections of his courses, two of which — Principles of Accounting and Personal Computers in Business — are not only required for all business majors and minors but also very popular among non-business majors, Barkhi noted.

In spring 2012, Negangard received a PwC INQuires grant to develop the Forensic Accounting course.

"Eric spent seven years working at KPMG as a forensic accountant and brings invaluable real-life examples and experience to the classroom," Barkhi said. As a result, he said, the class became an instant hit among the department's undergraduate and graduate students.

"Eric has been a tremendous addition to our Ph.D. program and a great asset to our classroom instruction."

These student comments (excerpts) are a testimony to Negangard's teaching talents:

  • "From the first session, it was evident that Eric was well prepared. His knowledge and experience were interwoven in lectures to provide a vivid description of concepts."
  • "Eric used a large number of real-life examples and his experience from working in public accounting. He actively engaged the class and was always prepared and willing to answer student's questions."
  • "Eric was a great teacher who really cared about his students. He used different techniques to teach the material, which kept the course interesting and relevant. He was also always in a good mood and excited to be there, which made coming to class more enjoyable."
  • "This is hands down the best class I've had at VT; Mr. Negangard was amazing and really facilitated learning difficult material."

Outstanding Pamplin Senior Award

William Jones

William Jones, a senior majoring in finance, economics, and accounting and minoring in history, has served since March 2012 as co-CEO of SEED, Virginia Tech's student-managed equity investment fund.

He "has proven to be one the best CEOs we have ever had," wrote finance department head Art Keown. "He took over after SEED experienced some investment problems and did an amazing job of turning things around — restructuring and streamlining the investment decision process and making it much more successful."

As co-CEO, Jones helped design a new valuation model for potential investments, organize a trip to New York, create a new recruitment process, and oversee the general management of SEED's members and portfolio.

As a global loans intern at Citi last summer, Jones assisted team members in providing origination, structuring, and syndication advice to clients to support strategic capital raising and financing requirements.

In previous summer jobs, he was a member of the serving staff at Blacksburg Country Club, a shift supervisor at Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream, and a caretaker for a local multiple sclerosis patient (done in part on a volunteer basis). He has worked nearly every semester in college.

A member of the Virginia Tech wrestling team in 2009, Jones volunteered as a wrestling coach in the local parks and recreation department for three summers and helped provide individual instruction for athletes at Blacksburg High School. He has accepted a full-time job at Citi.

H. H. Mitchell Outstanding Leadership Award

Marlee Newman

Marlee P. Newman, a senior majoring in marketing and minoring in international business, assisted in developing a new Virginia Tech study abroad program, "Creating Sustainable Social Change."

Expecting to graduate this spring, Newman plans to help lead and mentor 27 students during the first year of this program in Lugano, Switzerland, this fall and to lead completion of a service project in Africa.

Newman served as an ambassador for a small group of Virginia Tech students who spent 10 days in Kenya teaching at a primary school and founded a non-profit organization to help further education for underprivileged children there. As vice president of finance for Delta Gamma sorority, she was responsible for managing and allocating a $120,000 budget.

She has worked as an instructor with Virginia Tech's recreational sports department since December 2010, teaching cycling and cross-training classes at McComas Hall, and as a sales team leader and social media manager at local businesses.

College Service Award

Natalie Love

Hospitality and tourism management senior Natalie Love is the "consummate community, university, college, and departmental volunteer," wrote department head Rick Perdue.

She has volunteered with the Blacksburg Partnership, Business Horizons, the Residence Hall Federation (as president of O'Shaughnessy), Hospitality Management Association (vice president), Eta Sigma Delta Honors Society (events director), the Pamplin Leadership Development Team, and the college's peer mentor program and commencement committee.

"No matter where I am or what I am doing, Natalie is there as a volunteer and service leader ... She is a very good student who is truly engaged in every aspect of the university and is living our Ut Prosim motto."

Shadow for bottom of page