Chip Miller visits with Fr. Mark Matthias, dean of the College of Commerce, as his guest at the school of businesses’ alumni homecoming celebration.
Drake Fulbright Scholar takes expertise to the
Whether working one-on-one with students or
addressing a lecture hall filled with more than 200 of them, Drake University
Professor of Marketing Chip Miller is making sure his expertise has a lasting
impact on many students for years to come.
Miller was awarded a Fulbright Scholar grant to
lecture at the University of San Carlos in Cebu, Philippines. His task is
to work with faculty to update academic programs undergraduate, masters and
Ph.D. levels, improve teaching and assist faculty and graduate students in
publishing their research.
“The most meaningful part of this experience
has been helping the school get its programs aligned and better
delivered,” Miller said. “I feel better education is part of getting
more fulfillment from life, as well as proving the bedrock for creating change
for the better in one’s community and nation.”
He left for the Philippines last fall expecting to
work with students. Miller hopes to make a difference as he faces the
unforeseen challenge of streamlining and improving the College of Commerce’s
curriculum. His time has been spent interviewing administrators, observing
faculty, and even writing comprehensive exam questions for graduate students.
The activity has been non-stop, but rewarding.
“My original intent was to teach the teachers
how to run a class in personal selling; how to add a module of negotiations to
international business; and teach my own class in marketing management at the
MBA level,” said Miller. “After I arrived the dean and I decided that I
could have the greatest impact working with faculty on their teaching and
developing the undergraduate and graduate curricula for the benefit of future
classes. The effect would reach
far beyond the handful of students I could teach directly.”
His stay in the Philippines, lasting from November
2007 to April 2008, hasn’t come without some adaptations for Miller. His fourth
trip to the country, he had some idea of what to expect, though this stay has
been his longest.
Chip Miller learns cultural Filipino dance.
Even through the chaotic traffic, lack of hot or
drinkable water and poverty in the area, Miller found a colorful highlight of
his stay at a farewell party for a group of visiting Taiwanese students.
“The university’s dance troupe put on a
performance of Filipino dances that was positively wonderful,” he said.
“Colorful costumes, beaming smiles and precise movements. It was a great
experience to see such talent.”
The university is the largest academic institution
outside of the city of Manila. It is best known for its top level performance
on professional exams by the engineering and accounting programs. The College
of Commerce has nearly 5,000 students–in comparison, there are approximately
1,500 bachelor’s and master’s students within Drake’s College of Business and
With a bachelor’s degree in biology, master’s
degrees in business administration and East Asian studies and a Ph.D. in
marketing, he also has marketing experience in pharmaceutical sales, entrepreneurship
and marketing research.
“I’m elated for the chance to make a
significant impact in a third-world country,” said Miller. “The
experience is a great way to make a difference and bring back information for
use in the classroom.”