Lytle to engage in unique post-doctoral fellowship and practicum

Posted October 08, 2012

Dr. Rick Lytle, Dean of the College of Business Administration (COBA), has accepted invitations to two unique post-doctoral opportunities this academic year. The first is a fellowship opportunity with the CEO Forum in Colorado Springs; the second is a practicum in strategic marketing with Walmart in Bentonville, Ark.

"I am grateful to have the opportunity to pursue these unique learning endeavors," Dr. Lytle says. "It's my hope that the experiences will be of benefit to our students and faculty, to myself professionally, and to the overall mission and work of our college."

Lytle will travel to Colorado Springs this month to work with the CEO Forum. The Forum, started by Focus on the Family in 2005, is an independent organization dedicated to "developing spiritual statesmen among senior executives of major corporations."

During his fellowship, Lytle will make various domestic and international CEO visits. The visits will serve two purposes: to increase his understanding of issues being faced by Christians in business and to form new relationships with business leaders. Lytle believes they will in turn lead to more internships and jobs for students, more opportunities for faculty research, and what he hopes will be new avenues for 'friend-raising' for COBA.

Lytle will also engage in the CEO Forum's national project The Virtues Initiative. The project's goal is to develop an enhanced model for teaching ethics and moral virtues to today's students and business leaders. "I anticipate engaging several COBA faculty and students to work with me on this project during the year," Lytle says.

The Virtues Initiative will include many prominent business experts. Among them: Dr. David Miller, Director of Princeton’s Center for Faith and Work; Dr. Tim Irwin, Atlanta author/consultant; Dr. Sean Hannah of Wake Forest; Dr. Gregory Jones of Duke Divinity; Brent Garrison, Director at CEO Forum; and Steve Reinemund, former PepsiCo CEO and Dean of Business at Wake Forest.

"Dr. Lytle's selection to participate in a fellowship with the CEO Forum is a distinct honor for him and of direct benefit to ACU," says Dr. Robert Rhodes, Provost of ACU. "The national and international experiences with leading corporations that this opportunity affords will provide Dr. Lytle with invaluable insight as he leads this important college. His interaction with corporate leaders with also broaden the sphere of influence that ACU has within the business community and increase the opportunities our current students and future graduates have for internships and employment. I am proud that he has been selected for this role and am appreciative that he is willing to lead by example in this way."

Lytle's second opportunity this year will be a marketing practicum with Walmart in Bentonville, Arkansas, that will allow him to work and study alongside the company's senior level executives. There will be significant shadowing opportunities and direct involvement in major projects.

Ultimately, Lytle's goal is to use knowledge and information gained from the Walmart practicum to enhance COBA programs. "I hope this work will expand our thinking and understanding of what our Marketing degree programs need to look like in the decade ahead."

While away from Abilene, the COBA Leadership Team and Dr. Monty Lynn, the college's Associate Dean, will direct COBA's daily operations. Lytle will communicate frequently and continue to provide input on major strategic initiatives for the college.

Learn more about the College of Business Administration.