college of business

college of business

Connections open doors to career prospects 
Img Fran Garton 260x186


Top Alum Brings New Opportunities to Students
Thanks to one of Johnson & Wales University’s top alumni, business students now have the chance to interview for positions previously reserved for Ivy Leaguers and students from other top-tier schools. Fran Garton ’99, ’01 M.B.A., business sales manager for AT&T in its New York City market, reached out to his employer and to David Mitchell, Ph.D., Providence dean of the College of Business, to bring the partnership to life.

In October 2008, for the first time, AT&T recruited JWU students for its College New Hire Program. After graduation, those accepted become full-time employees and enter a six-month program. “They are trained in all types of AT&T systems, products strategic sales, relationship selling, and industry knowledge,” explains Garton.

Along with his nine-member team, Garton is responsible for $30 million in revenue through sales to companies with one to 5,000-plus employees. Products include wireless devices like the iPhone and BlackBerry and the applications and services that make them work well for clients. “At the end of the day, our goal is to provide our clients more productivity time so they can make more money. We do that by enabling them to do their work through a wireless world, so to speak,” Garton says. And he’s not just talking about phones.

Garton sells devices and applications for lawyers to track billable hours on wireless handsets, wireless networks that recover data from crashed cash registers and get them back online quickly, and a geographic accountability program to track a vehicle’s movements.
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Img Busn Susan Kiely and Johana RodriguesVolunteer Opportunity Leads to Much More
When sophomore Johana Rodriguez, a fashion merchandising and retail marketing student at the Denver Campus, volunteered for Women with a Cause’s DiverCITY fashion show in February, she ended up with an internship and a new mentor.

Women with a Cause is dedicated to women helping women. Teams of American women go to global locations including India, Thailand and Burma, and teach impoverished women how to sew and produce clothing and other goods. The organization then sells the items and puts all proceeds back into the program.

While volunteering at the fashion show, Rodriguez viewed a video describing the transformational journey of women in these countries from having no marketable skills to becoming skilled seamstresses and teaching the craft to others.

Rodriguez says she realized that “fashion can do more than dress people. It can truly make a difference.” After the show, she had the opportunity to speak with Susan Kiely, the founder of Women with a Cause. That conversation resulted in an internship with the organization for Rodriguez.

Kiely, who was already familiar with JWU’s programs, community involvement and experiential education said, “Working with Johana is fabulous. She’s a great young leader with so much energy.”

Kiely has also become Rodriguez’s mentor, teaching her about marketing and inventory, and how to create a business plan. “The best way to mentor someone is to be in their lives and I get to be in Johana’s,” said Kiely.
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Top: l-r: Susan Kiely, founder of Women with a Cause, poses with sophmore, Johana Rodriguez.

quick take:business

The 3rd annual R.I. Small Business Economic Summit was hosted by the Providence Campus, at the Culinary Arts Museum in January and included a panel discussion with Gov. Donald Carcieri, Lt. Gov. Elizabeth Roberts, General Treasurer Frank Caprio and leaders of the R.I. General Assembly.