Professor John Kammeyer-Mueller Wins 2016 Herbie Award

kammeyer-mueller-june-2013Professor John Kammeyer-Mueller has been awarded the 2016 Herbie Award. Since 1969, students in the MA-HRIR program have voted for, and presented, the “Herbie” Award to a faculty member displaying excellence in teaching.

Named after the second director of the then Industrial Relations Center, Herbert Heneman was well known in the HR/IR community as one of the foremost experts of his time in our field. He was a distinguished teacher and researcher, a charismatic leader, and an academic colleague who helped propel our program to where it is today.

Kammeyer-Mueller joined the Carlson School in 2013, currently teaches Staffing, Training and Development courses, and serves as the PhD coordinator for the Department of Work and Organizations. Congratulations, John!

Spotlight on…


Alumna Delphine Barringer-Mills

Delphine Barringer-Mills, ’08 MA-HRIR, works as a senior talent acquisition advisor for Mercy Corps in Belgium. Here she shares what living abroad is like.

What was appealing to you about working internationally?
I really love the multicultural dimension. Especially working in recruitment, it’s not only the assessing a candidate in an interview but the element of connection between someone of another culture, which I love.

In my new job I am working on building Mercy Corps’ employment brand in Europe. In this role I will need to think through what elements of the organization are most interesting to a European audience, and what the nuances are in connecting and bringing our brand here while remaining genuine to who we are as an organization.

Do you speak any foreign languages?
I speak French, Italian, Spanish, and some limited Arabic (enough to connect with people and make them laugh).

How has your career unfolded throughout the years?
I worked as an international recruitment manager with Land O’Lakes before moving into my current role. At Land O’Lakes’ international development division, my role was recruiting, but also designing the teams and team structures for our proposal efforts. In the world of USAID (US Agency for International Development), organizations like ours would respond to “requests for proposals” and essentially compete for funding with other comparable organizations.

Since leaving Land O’Lakes I have gone back for a degree in executive management at the business school here (Solvay School of Economics and Business).

What benefits and challenges have you faced?
I am half Belgian and spent a lot of time here growing up. I did struggle in trying to recreate my Minnesotan life here. Each culture is different and you need to adapt. With work the struggle is, I keep finding remote roles and I would love to work in an office.

How often do you return to the United States?
With work still over in the United States, I come back often, about two to three times per year.

Professounnamed-1r John Budd

Professor John Budd joined the Carlson School in 1991. Here he answers a few questions about his teaching and research.

Can you tell us about research that you’re excited about?
While my book “Employment with a Human Face: Balancing Efficiency, Equity, and Voice” is now 12 years old, it’s still exciting to me because of the number of compliments I continue to receive. Faculty from around the world have indicated that it’s useful in their teaching (the latest from the Philippines, just this month), and many PhD students have commented on how useful it’s been for them to organize their thoughts for their dissertations (the latest from Italy, just this month). Currently, one project I’m working on uses data from workers in 27 European countries to analyze the extent to which workplace-level employee participation practices enable individuals to be more engaged in the political arena, by creating a sense of empowerment and by sharpening deliberative skills. I think this is exciting because the connections between what happens in the workplace and what happens in civil society are often overlooked. So what HR leaders do can be even more important than we think.

What will you be teaching this academic year?
I am teaching “Using Metrics and Data in HRIR” and two sections of “Personnel Economics.” It’s fun teaching data and metrics in the first year core again. That was the first course I taught in the program many years ago, but it’s been a few years since the last time so I’m playing catch-up a little.

Do you have any advice for current students?
One piece of advice for students is to talk to your professors. We are here to help. And it’s fun getting to know you.

What do you like to do in your free time?
I like to do a little of this, a little of that. Recently this has included traveling (I had a conference Milan and I went a little early to explore Lake Como), dealing with a kitchen remodel, and watching sports (especially football and soccer, plus looking forward to the start of hockey season). And once the remodel is done, I’ll enjoy cooking again, too.

What are you currently reading?
Since I was traveling to northern Italy, I just finished two Commissario Trotti mysteries.I also just finished reviewing a book-length manuscript for Stanford University Press called “Models of Labor Markets.” Now I need to read a forthcoming book called “A Fight for the Soul of Public Education: The Story of the Chicago Teachers Strike” so that I can write a brief endorsement that will appear on the back cover. I’ve also been meaning to read “Cubed: A Secret History of the Workplace” but other things keep coming up.

Is there any little-known fact about you that people might be surprised about?
I’ve driven a train and a 213-foot Coast Guard ship.



chris-morrisonFirst Year Student Chris Morrison

Chris Morrison joined the full-time MA-HRIR program this fall, and shares a little about his pathway to the program.

Why did you choose to attend the Carlson School’s MA-HRIR program?
Two reasons. The first is the reputation of the program and the Carlson graduates. The program has been around for a long time, and is well known for producing the most qualified professionals in the field. The second reason was the warm welcome I received from the HRIR program. From getting a phone call about my acceptance, to current students and staff reaching out to help me with the transition to Minneapolis, I knew the program was the right fit for me.

Where did you go for your undergraduate degree, and what was your major?
I graduated from Idaho State University in 2011, with a Bachelor of Business Administration, Business Management.

Do you have any work experience?
My work experience between my undergrad and Carlson was with the United States Marine Corps. I served four years with 3rd Battalion, 3rd Marines, stationed in Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii. I went on two deployments to the Asia-Pacific region, and now I am looking to apply that leadership experience to a career in Human Resources.

What’s been your favorite part of the program so far?
The diversity of the COHORT is absolutely incredible. I’ve been fortunate to travel and work with people from all over the world, but I have never had the opportunity to work so closely with so many different cultures and professional backgrounds in one small group. For example, I am working on a project in Business Principles with group members from China, Ukraine, Russia, and the Maldives. The diversity of the class is an amazing experience so far.

What do you like to do in your free time?
My wife and I are avid stand up paddle boarders so we’ve been exploring the lakes around Minneapolis. However, the surf tends to be a little smaller here than in Hawaii so we’ve been exploring the bike trails around Minneapolis as well.



Congratulations Graduates!

As the sounds of Pomp and Circumstance filled the air on May 16, close to 700 students filed into Mariucci Arena as current Carlson School of Management graduate students and marched out as alumni! Seventy of those students earned a Master of Arts in Human Resources and Industrial Relations, and two earned a PhD in Business Administration with a concentration in Work and Organizations.

Dean Sri Zaheer inspired the emerging leaders to embrace business as a means to shape a brighter world.

“At its core, business is truly about creating new ideas for the future. It’s about enabling consumers, employees, and people to improve their own quality of life and contribute to improving that of others,” she says. “Part of why I’m so optimistic for the future is that I’ve seen you all embracing these principles while at the Carlson School.”

Keynote speaker Barbara Mowry, ’75 MBA, CEO of GoreCreek Advisors, shared advice and encouragement from her decades’ experience as a corporate executive, entrepreneur, and corporate board member. “This will likely be the last time you graduate from a formal degree program,” she says. “You are now transitioning from a formal education process to a self-directed course of continuous learning – and now the real education begins.”

As our newly-minted alumni leave campus to begin new careers, pursue additional schooling, enjoy travel and family time, or embark on any number of other great adventures, we wish them all the best in whatever the future holds.  (We’ve posted a selection of photos from this momentous occasion here.)

Congratulations, graduates! Best of luck, and please stay in touch!

MA-HRIR Alum Embraces Global Career in Lagos, Nigeria

f72dfe41-0a3c-45fa-ac54-ac2d2cddb55fRuss Lee, ’14 MA-HRIR, joined Chevron immediately after graduation and recently began a six-month rotation in Lagos, Nigeria.  Read on to find out what life is like so far for him in Lagos.

Why Lagos?

-I am in Lagos, Nigeria for six months as part of the Chevron HR Development Program (HRDP). Chevron sees value in sending all their development program members on an international rotation sometime within their first two years at the company. Other alums have rotated through Nigeria while on HRDP with Chevron. They have all done great things here, and I hope to carry on their legacy.

How long have you lived in Lagos?

-1.5 months.

What has been the most interesting experience for you so far?

– My most interesting experience was flying on a helicopter for the first time. This one held 18+ people and it was a smooth ride to and from an off-shore platform on the Atlantic Ocean. I spent the time looking out at the vast ocean and writing in my journal to self-reflect about my experience here, my family and life goals.

What does working in a city like Lagos entail?

-I mainly work in Lagos at the Chevron office buildings.  I recently did a two-day trip to one of our off-shore platforms. There, I was involved in supervisor engagement sessions, new leader assimilations and other HR meetings. My next business trip will be to our Escravos gas-to-liquids plant located near the Niger Delta. I am able to learn and understand much more about our business and our workforce when I can physically be at the location. I appreciate these opportunities and try to make the most out of each experience.

What’s a benefit and challenge of living or working in Lagos?

-We love it here. I am accompanied by my wife, Adri, and two daughters, Sophia and Grace. We live in a company expatriate neighborhood where over a dozen different nationalities are represented. We spend time participating in community events around Lagos and car traffic can be really heavy at times. My most difficult challenge: the main language spoken here is “Pigeon” English. At first, I struggled to understand the English words spoken by locals. One Nigerian co-worker remarked, “Russ, you really need to learn our English language here.”. We both laughed. I am getting better.

Were you nervous or excited to move to such a foreign place?

-No matter where you live in this world, you will find differing opinions. When we first told my side of the family about moving to Nigeria, they reacted with concerns for our safety. When we told my wife’s family, their response was, “Wow! We have never been there, when can we come visit you?” Overall, we were excited to come, but we also tried to be realistic in what to expect when we arrived because it is very different than the U.S. and very much still a developing country. By the time we boarded the airplane, we felt prepared for what was next, and so far so good. I hope to see more HRIR graduates join Chevron and carry-on

Where in the world Wednesday? Featuring Christina Spriggle

AAEAAQAAAAAAAAK0AAAAJDZiMjA0NTdiLTQ2ZjctNDc3YS1iN2EzLTVjZjA3YjkxYmU3NQChristina Spriggle, ’04 MA-HRIR recently took on a new title as HR director for a professional medical liability company, Constellation, Inc. in December 2015. Spriggle’s past experience includes working at UnitedHealth Group Inc.

She now lives in Woodbury, MN with her family. Last August, she enjoyed planning a family vacation where they ventured by plane, train, and automobile across five New England States: Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, and ended the voyage with a 3 day visit to New York City.

Jing Liao, ’97 MA-HRIR, Named President and Chief Commercial Officer of Viridis Learning

Jing_Liao-214x3002Jing Liao, ’97 MA-HRIR, has been named President and Chief Commercial Officer of Viridis Learning Inc., a leading provider of algorithm-based software for college student career placement.

Felix Ortiz, Chairman and CEO of Viridis commented, “We are very excited to invite Jing to join our team. We have an unprecedented opportunity to capture the higher education placement market and impact millions of people’s lives globally. Jing’s passion and her remarkable experience and success in providing enterprise-class human capital solutions is just what we need to take Viridis to the next level. We are looking forward to a bright future with Jing coming on board to spearhead our sales efforts!”

“I am thrilled to work with Viridis’ highly reputable board and investors, our passionate and fearless leader Felix, and our committed leadership team and staff, and critical college and corporate partners to extend our impact in connecting students, schools and employment,” said Liao. “Time to fill, cost of hire, and quality of hire have always been the front and center of corporations’ talent concerns. Viridis Learning provides a unique solution with access to validated school records and systematic job match. I am honored to be considered for this ideal leadership opportunity to marry my passion for higher education and talent development with my track record of successful enterprise talent management. Our vision to build stronger career path for millions of college students will have a real impact of the whole world. I’m excited to be a part of the journey.”

Liao comes to Viridis Learning from TriNet HR Corporation, the leading bundled HR service provider for small to mid-sized companies as their Senior Vice President of Human Resources. Under Liao’s leadership, TriNet won the Elite Award of the Best and Brightest Company in San Francisco in 2014, and the National Award of Best and Brightest Company in 2015, and National Award of Best and Brightest Wellness Practice in 2015. Her team filled more than a thousand positions in 2015 and created one of the largest sales organizations in the Professional Employer Organization industry.

Prior to that, she was the Vice President of Global Human Resources for Atmel Corporation, a leading semiconductor company. Atmel was called the “King of Touch Controller outside of Apple” in 2011. Liao has been co-chair of the San Francisco CHRO Forum since 2011, and serves on the advisory board of the MA-HRIR program for the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota. She also serves on the Board Executive Compensation Committee for El Camino Hospital. She was named a winner of the 2013 Top 10 Breakaway Leader Awards – Influence the Future of Work – Talent, Strategy, Leadership by Evanta.

Where in the World Wednesday? Featuring Alexandria Smith

alexAlexandria (Crump) Smith, ’05 MA-HRIR, now lives in Memphis, Tennessee with her husband and 3-year old-daughter where she works as the chief of human resources for Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland’s administration. Before settling down in Memphis, however, Smith had lots of experience in the HR world all around the country. With jobs at Microsoft Corporation near Seattle, Target Corporation in Minneapolis, and serving as director of human resources at Brightstar Device Protection in Miami, Smith has learned important lessons that she continues to use in her career. “Every one of those cities had a unique diversity,” Smith said. A Duke University undergrad, Smith always thought growing up that she would work on Wall Street. However, after a college field trip there she realized it was not for her, which then compelled her to attend the University of Minnesota to get her master’s degree in human resources and industrial relations.