Visiting professor sheds light on nature of ‘new economy’

By Chris Biggs, Special to The China Post

By Chris Biggs Special to The China Post In the media we sometimes find references to ‘the new economy’. Has the traditional supply-demand paradigm fundamentally changed in the past decade?

Dr. Susan Aldridge, Ph.D, a management professor from Troy State University (TSU), would answer “no.” She is in Taiwan to give presentation entitled “The New Economy: Managing in The New Millennium”. Citing a number of academics in support of her thesis, Aldridge nonetheless recognizes how the economy is driven by technology and the new information age. The talk will take place today at the Howard Plaza Hotel from 1000 a.m. to 1100 a.m.

In addition to speaking on the economy, Aldridge is also visiting in her capacity as director of international programs at TSU’s University College, which has offered degree programs away from its main campus for over 50 years. The school became involved in off-site education at the request of the U.S. Defense Department, said Aldridge. TSU currently offers degree programs at 60 different sites around the world. TSU sites offering degrees in Asia currently include nine at military installations in Korea and Japan, a number of sites in Malaysia, and one each in Bangkok and Hong Kong and Hanoi, she said. “What brings us to Taiwan is we’re starting a series of executive seminars for business executives,” said Aldridge. “We will be sending faculty members and business people who will come here to talk about various topics.” TSU plans to hold one such seminar per month over the next year, she added. Aldridge said that business people attending the seminars can approach them in one of two ways: they can either audit the courses to enhance their professional knowledge, or they can attend seminars with the goal of completing an Executive Master of Business Administration degree (EMBA) at the TSU’s main campus in Troy, Alabama. The minimum requirements for those who want to work towards a degree must have five years of work experience

The seminars, which cost US$2,000 to attend, are 41 hours for those auditing, or 45 hours for those who wish to travel to the U.S. to complete an EMBA. The difference in length comes from the absence of a four-hour exam for those auditing the seminar. The total cost for attendees wishing to go on to complete an EMBA at TSU in the U.S. is US$26,000. That program can be completed in 13 months. Degree-minded seminar attendees are required have five years of work experience and must submit TOEFL and GRE or GMAT scores in order to be accepted to the program. Executives first attend 12 seminars in Taiwan before attending a thirteenth seminar at the university’s Troy, Alabama campus to complete the degree. The 13-seminar curriculum begins with “Survey of Business Concepts,” said Aldridge. The course is a prerequisite for those wishing to take all 12 seminars in Taiwan and complete the EMBA degree in the U.S., she added. It provides an overview. Students then study these concepts in depth with seminars in the following areas: quantitative analysis, economics, operations management, accounting, finance, ethics, marketing, information technology, organizational behavior, human resources, business strategy and applied research. TSU is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, said Aldridge, and its business school is accredited by both the American Association of Colleges and Schools of Business (AACSB) and the Association of College and Business School Programs (ACBSP).

TSU graduates of note mentioned by Aldridge include American astronaut Kevin Kregel, who served as mission commander for the February 2000 mission of the space shuttle Endeavor; Dr. Manley Johnson, who was the U.S. assistant secretary of the treasury during the Reagan administration, and General James M. Shamess, the director of security forces for Headquarters U.S. Air Force Security Forces, Washington, D.C. Aldridge is the Director of International Programs for University College at Troy State University. Her oversight responsibilities include university campuses in the Western part of the United States, as well as Taiwan, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Bangkok, Vietnam and China.