Stillman school program launches new students into success

On Sept. 9, new Stillman School MBA students convened on campus for two days as part of the Launch Experience course under the guidance of faculty and Seton Hall alumni. Students were not only privy to valuable hands on experience, but also introduced to the improved MBA program.

“We took the mission: ‘Transforming concepts into practice’ to a whole other level,” said Daniel Ladik, associate professor of marketing, professor of records for the Launch Experience course and director of the MBA program. “We wanted the students to have an incredible experience like at the end of the program, at the beginning of the program.”

The newly created Stillman Launch Program allows students to connect with companies like the Stryker Corporation.
Photo courtesy of Daniel Ladik

Ladik said the program was “three years in the making.”

Taking the philosophy of concepts into practice, which is also one of the pillars of the Stillman School, means giving students the chance to work with real life clients beyond what they learn in the classroom. The Launch Experience acts as the first step for students to take part in connection with companies.

Over the course of the two days, they joined a focus exercise on the Stryker Corporation, which manufactures medical devices and equipment, preparing cases and presentations for the company, emphasizing the “practice” part of the mission.

“The other foundation courses for this academic year will also use examples about Stryker,” Ladik said.

Not only was a corporation like Stryker made accessible to the new students, but they were also exposed to vast Stillman alumni like Gabino Roche, 98’ graduate.
Roche spoke to the students and faculty about a range of topics. From branding and self-awareness, to discipline in the workplace and learning how to build leverage through networking.

Telling stories about his own experiences in the industry, he shared wisdom through the lens of anecdotes, giving students points of reference on the concepts they learned.

Reflecting on one of the themes he spoke about, networking, he said, “The whole principal point that I was getting at, was being selfless. Instead of talking at people, talk to them so you can benefit them.”

For more than half an hour, Roche spoke about giving tips, advice, and first-hand accounts of experience working within the business world.

On the last day, 12 groups of students collaborated and created cases with faculty and executives, tackling tasks while also taking pointers.

“Personally, I had a great time with my team,” said Madison McHugh, a MBA/MA diplomacy major. “The Launch Experience gave me a great confidence boost.”

Ladik recognized that his experience and this new program sets Seton Hall apart from other schools. “I don’t think there’s any other MBA program around that has what we have with the Launch Experience,” Ladik said.

Megan Beauchamp can be reached at

Author: Staff Writer

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