Editor’s Note: This is the seventh in a series of profiles on new, full-time faculty members.
Case in point: Stan Wilczek, assistant professor of organizational management.
He is a 30-year veteran of Niagara Mohawk, a Fortune 500 company, where he held down key managerial posts, including vice president of nuclear support and vice president of customer service.
“I feel an obligation to give back to society,” said Wilczek of his desire to teach the next generation of business leaders. “I am lucky to have experienced what I have.”
Executive Director of Communications Doug Lippincott, a former Wilczek student, said Wilczek’s “real-world experience meshed well with what he was teaching in the classroom. That combination was invaluable. Many things I learned in Stan’s classes I was able to put into practice in my job.”
“One of the thoughts I always try to leave students with is that they are not just ‘spending time in the classroom,’ but that they should soak up all of the learning that they can and apply what they are learning in their current jobs,” said Wilczek “If students go through the program with the goal of just earning a degree, it will not take a future boss long to figure out that he or she does not have the skills needed in today’s workplace, such as problem-solving, decision-making, working on teams, and technical/professional writing.”
Wilczek, who earned a bachelor’s degree in nuclear engineering from SUNY Buffalo and a MBA from Syracuse University, has been a part of ASAP for five years. In addition to Keuka, he has taught at SUNY Oswego, Le Moyne College, and Bryant and Stratton. He has taught traditional and older students and enjoys doing both, and adjusts his teaching style to meet the needs of each group.
“Non-traditional students have more knowledge and experience from which to work,” he said. “A 21-year-old doesn’t know as much as someone 55 to 60 years old.”
In addition to his business acumen, Wilczek brings a lot more to the classroom.
“He is the most prepared teacher I ever had,” said Lippincott, who earned a master’s degree in management from Keuka in May.
Wilczek subscribes to dozens of magazines so that he is as up-to-date as he can be. In his Strategic Management course he engaged his students in a discussion about Apple, in particular how the company would fare after the death of Steve Jobs.
Wilczek is also the author of two novels: The Kept Secret was published in 2006, followed by The Soma Man in 2008. His third book is currently in the works.
“He shared what he went through writing books, most notably the importance of conducting quality research,” said Lippincott. “That inspired me to conduct solid research for my Action Research Project.”
Despite a budding writing career, Wilczek has no plans to give up teaching.
“I enjoy being in a classroom,” he says. “I’m at the point in my career where I only do things for fun.”