USC Upstate to Host Business Blitz Week

October 16, 2012 at 8:25 am

Business majors and the faculty of the George Dean Johnson, Jr. College of Business (“the George”) at the University of South Carolina Upstate are hosting a “Business Blitz” from October 8-15, featuring guest speakers drawn from business and manufacturing sectors, a downtown scavenger hunt, visits to downtown businesses, guided tours, a cookout with games and music, networking events and more. Locations below are at the George (160 E. St. John St., downtown Spartanburg) unless specified otherwise. Faculty, staff, students and downtown business leaders are invited to participate in these events. For more information on the Blitz Week, contact Hannah Terpack at (864) 503-5049 or

Monday, October 8

Business Visits
Throughout the day
Students will drop in on ten downtown businesses all within walking distance of the George

Scavenger Hunt
3:30-5 p.m.
Scavenger hunt begins. Registration forms available in George 153. Continues through Wednesday. Students may compete in small groups or individually.

ScanSource Meet and Greet
3:30–5 p.m.,  Zimmerli Plaza
Join the ScanSource human resources team and alumni who work for ScanSource

Guest Speaker: Bill Barnet
6 p.m., Room 260
Former Spartanburg Mayor Bill Barnet will be speaking to the Senior Strategy Class about his experiences in business and as mayor of Spartanburg. Instructor: Mike Dinger.


Tuesday, October 9

Guest Speaker: Paul Garner
9:25 a.m.,  Room 250
Paul Garner, director of finance at Polydeck Screen Corporation, will visit the Advanced Accounting class to discuss the difficulties (accounting and otherwise) that his mid-sized firm has encountered while establishing operations in Chile and in planning to set up operations in Indonesia.  Instructor: Elizabeth Cole.

Guest Speaker: Ray Barry
3:05 p.m., Room 250
Ray Barry, President of Total Training Services, will be speaking to the New Business Enterprise Class. Instructor: Jeff Smith.

Games & Food
4:30-6 p.m.,  Zimmerli Plaza
Games (corn hole, dodge ball with faculty vs. students, etc.) and food (hot dogs, hamburgers and sides)

Wednesday, October 10

Guest Speaker: Jessica Murphy
9:25 a.m. Room 260, and 12:25 p.m. Room 170
The International Business class welcomes Jessica Murphy of DHL, the world market leader in logistics and shipping operations.  A recent graduate of USC Upstate, Jessica will talk about DHL’s business practices and the appeal of an internationally-oriented career.  Instructor: Mark Pruett

Guest Speaker: Al Gossett
11 a.m. Room 250, and 2 p.m. Room 260
The Strategic Management of Information Systems Class welcomes Al Gossett from Integral Solutions to discuss his experiences as a manager working with information technology (IT) in organizations. He will also talk about the opportunities and threats posed by IT in contemporary competitive environments. Finally, he plans to note the skills and competencies that today’s graduates need to effectively manage and leverage IT in the workplace. Instructor: Nick Roberts.

Scavenger Hunt Ends
12 p.m., Return forms to Hannah Terpack in Room 153

Guest Speaker: Beth Rutherford
12:25 p.m., Room 260
The Issues in Economics Class welcomes Beth Rutherford, executive director of the Spartanburg Interfaith Hospitality Network. The class is exploring the issue of poverty in the U.S. and she will provide information concerning services available to assist those in need, particularly homeless families. Instructor: Sarah Rook 

Guided Walking Tour of Downtown
2 p.m., Meet in Atrium, First Floor
Led by Mark Pruett and Hannah Terpack, this tour will stop by several local businesses and end at Zarza’s at 2:45 p.m.

Student & Faculty Reception with Spartanburg Downtown Business Association
2:45 p.m., Zarza’s, 149 S. Daniel Morgan Ave.
Refreshments and networking.

Games, Food & Music
4:30-6 p.m., Zimmerli Plaza
Games (corn hole, dodge ball with faculty vs. students, etc.), food (hot dogs, hamburgers and sides), and live music performed by USC Upstate faculty.

Thursday, October 11

Guest Speaker: Rick Tepatti, “Translating Company Strategy into Operations Strategy”
8 a.m., Room 160
Joining the Advanced Operations Class is Rick Tepatti who has more than 33 years of experience in operations management, primarily in supply chain management, Lean Six Sigma implementation, and quality management.  He is currently a Lean Six Sigma expert and Quality Assurance Leader for Honeywell Aerospace in Greer where they manufacture parts for turbine engines.  He has also worked in the automotive, electronics, and commercial and consumer products industries.  Instructor: Jim O’Connor

Scavenger Hunt Champions Announced
12:05 p.m., Atrium

Guest Speaker: Kyle Sikkila
12:15 p.m., Audit Class
Kyle Sikkila, a 2010 USC Upstate graduate, is employed with a Spartanburg CPA firm and will be the guest speaker for this Audit Class. Sikkila passed three parts of the CPA exam and needs to complete one more part. He is also applying to grad school. Instructor: John Cronin

Guest Speaker: John Lodmell
12:15 p.m.,  Room 260
John Lodmell, director of credit and data analytics for Advance America, will discuss the role of analytics in business today in the Managerial Economics Class. Instructor: Adriana Cordis

Guest Speakers: Evin Martin and Heather Fouts
1:40 p.m., Room 250
Evin Martin and Heather Fouts from Brickhouse Fresh Pizzeria will be joining Jeff Smith’s class.

Monday, October 15

Guest Speaker: Eric Hayler, “Driving Customer Satisfaction – How BMW Manages and Improves Quality”
6 p.m., Room 280
Eric Hayler, Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt at BMW Manufacturing, will give an overview of BMW Manufacturing’s Quality Management System. His presentation will include a discussion of their Integrated Management System and how the balanced scorecard approach is used to manage targets.  BMW’s Continuous Improvement program includes Lean Six Sigma methodology as well as mature kaizen event and employee suggestion programs. Instructor: Frank Rudisill