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Recent News

COBA Advisory Board
COBA in China
COBA in London/Summer Program
Alumnus of the Year

Center for Professional Excellence
Building Renovation

COBA Advisory Board

We are pleased to announce the establishment of a new COBA Advisory Board for the Paul R. Carter College of Business.  With this new structure, we now how two divisions of our advisory board which should help us focus their attention on the internal activities and the external activities.  Many universities have boards that lean one way or the other in regards to structure and focus, but this structure should allow us to do both.  Both are crucial to our current and future success with our numerous constituents.   

The Academic board (internal focus) is structured with three alumni, three employers, and three academics.  The Center for Professional Excellence (CPE) board (external focus) is comprised of six employers and two faculty representatives.  The two divisions are considered "equals" as both roles are vital to our success in the College of Business. 

Advisory Board:
 CPE Division:   
    Joan Bell, VP at First Federal Bank in Harrison, AR
    Brett Biggs, EVP, CFO, Wal-Mart, Bentonville, AR
    Brad Bradley, former CEO of Equifirst and Senderra Capital, Charlotte, NC
    Byron Carlock, National Partner/Real Estate, PWC in Dallas/NYC
    Dave Finley, President and CEO of LeadsOnline in Dallas, TX    
    Mark Weeks, Retired Sr. VP of Finance from CVS Caremark in Nashville, TN
   Faculty Reps:
    Phil Brown, Chair of Acct and Fin at Harding
    Reet Cronk, Chair of MIS at Harding
 Academic Division:
     Bruce Binkley, President and CEO of TDW, Tulsa, OK
     Brant Bryan, Principal at Fairways Equity, Dallas, TX
     Brooks Davis, President of Simmons First Searcy
     Brad DeLong, CIO at Orix, Dallas, TX
     Charlie Elkins, Senior Managing Director of Marketing, Aviall, Dallas, TX
     Nancee Roberson, VP and COO, American Fidelity, Oklahoma City, OK
     Ray Eldridge, Senior Associate Dean of Business, Lipscomb University, Nashville, TN
     Gail Hudson, Former Chair of Marketing and Management at ASU Jonesboro, AR
     J.T. Rose, Finance Professor at Baylor, Waco, TX

COBA in Chinachina2013.jpg

During May 2013, a group of business students and two faculty sponsors experienced China for two weeks!  The journey began in Beijing where they visited several businesses and saw cultural sites such as the Great Wall, Forbidden City, and the Summer Palace.  They continued on to Xi’an for more business visits and a tour of the Terra Cotta warriors’ display.  The journey then took them to Guangzhou where they visited Guangdong University of Foreign Studies, one of the university’s partners.  With a visit through Zhuhai, they eventually landed in Hong Kong for continued business visits and city tours.  The 13 day trip which included five cities, two domestic flights, seven business visits, and numerous cultural visits, was an excellent addition to the many opportunities offered to our students in the College of Business.   

The College of Business is making plans to host this China Experience Trip during Intersession of each year.  If you are a student at Harding, we encourage you to look at this opportunity to expand your global horizons.  We limit the group to 15 students per year.  If you are an alumni and have business contacts in China, we would enjoy hearing from you.  For more information, contact the dean’s office in the College of Business.

COBA in London / Summer Program


London is the economic center for European business and one of the three global giants—along with Tokyo and New York. It is the 6th largest world economy and home to the world's largest international banking center, handling half of all European activity.

The London study program provides exposure to broad international businesses, multi-cultural diversity, and extensive history. With the primary language being English, travel and information exchange are easy.

Students will meet with, and learn from, such business as Murphy Oil, Cargill, ASDA, Tate and Lyle, Thames Refinery, Deloitte, Wimbledon, Leeds, the BBC, Sky Television, Jaguar, and similar companies. It is an opportunity to see how businesses perform in a vast global environment.

You will have an opportunity to experience the international lifestyle and culture on a daily basis. Cultural and historical visits include such landmarks as the 900 year old Tower of London, Westminster Abbey and St. Paul's Cathedral, the Borough Market, Portobello Road, the British Museum, London Eye, Shakespeare's Globe Theater, Imperial War Museum, The Royal Pavilion, castles, the British Open, and even the streets walked by Jack the Ripper. In past years, our arrival time has corresponded with the final rounds at Wimbledon and students have been able to spend a day at the world's most famous tennis tournament.

The Business Study Abroad Program includes a six week program with 8 semester hours of credit. Students are involved in four weeks of study, business visits, and travel in London and the surrounding area as well as two weeks of individual free travel throughout Europe (free travel time can be adjusted by traveler at personal cost).

If you are interested in this opportunity or would like more information, please contact Jim Shelton, jgshelton@harding.edu or 501-279-5685

Alumnus of the Year:

John FreemanThe Paul R. Carter Business Administration is honored to have John Freeman as our Alumnus of the Year.  Having worked in banking since 1974, John Freeman (69') has served many roles.  

Currently, he is president of Liberty Bank of Arkansas, a title he's held since 2003, and executive officer of Liberty Bancshares.  Prior to his work with Liberty, he was executive vice president of Citizens Bank of Jacksonville, Ark.; executive vice president of First National Bank of Batesville, Ark.; president of Independence Federal Bank of Batesville; and president of Union Planters of Arkansas.

He is vice chairman of the Arkansas State Banking Department board of directors, chairman of the Arkansas Bankers Association Governmental Affairs Committee, and a member of the Arkansas State University's chancellor's cabinet, among other organizations.  He and his wife, Lois Cooper, have two grown daughters.

Center for Professional Excellence

In the Spring of 2012, the Carter College of Business announced the "Center for Professional Services." This new center focuses on the needs of our business students in relation to career service, student development, and alumni relations. Our goal is to connect these three areas for the betterment of our student and alumni.

More specifically, the center helps students with internships and full time placement opportunities. This office invites numerous companies to come to campus, hosts several career fairs, as well as helps makes connections with other companies unable to come to campus. In addition, this office organized several student development activities and events to better prepare our students for their career. Finally, this center reaches out to our alumni all over the world to find out how we can involve them and support them through student involvement. All three of these areas connect strongly under this new "Center for Professional Excellence" under the direction of Nate Copeland.

For more information contact Nate Copeland, nbcopeland@harding.edu or 501-279-5555

Building Renovation

The J.E. and L.E. Mabee Business Building, which has housed the college since 1982, received an addition and renovation during 2010 and 2011.  We added new classrooms, a
finance trading lab, expanded student common areas, break-out rooms for group projects, faculty offices, expanded lobby, and a center for alumni networking. 

building1.jpgMore specifically, we added four new classrooms, one of which is a larger multi-purpose room.  We also added several new faculty offices and an expanded work room for our faculty and staff.  In response to our students, we created several breakout rooms that could be used as meeting rooms or study rooms.  The students also desired a larger student cafe, the "COBA Cafe", which was designed with a patio on the back of the building and a coffee/snack shop.  The newly expanded front lobby overlooks the newly created finance lab to the right and the newly refurbished dean's office to the left.  The stock tickers, technology panels, and welcome center enhance the technology and global aspect of today's business environment.  When students and visitors walk into the new lobby, it should be obvious that this is a professional yet comfortable building for our students to learn business.

College of Business