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University of Iowa News Release


Feb. 1, 2011

Sustainability Summit to explore business and social responsibility link Feb. 11

Sustainability is not just an environmental notion, it makes good business sense, too, and the University of Iowa’s Tippie MBA program is hoping to make that connection clear with a new Sustainability Summit event.

The Iowa chapter of Net Impact, an MBA student organization that focuses on environmental and social responsibility, will host its first-ever Sustainability Summit from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, Feb. 11, in the Second Floor Ballroom of the Iowa Memorial Union.

The speakers scheduled for this inaugural event include Craig Just, a UI adjunct associate professor of engineering; Laurie Zelnio, a director and sustainability expert from Deere & Co.; and Cheryl Davenport, a manager for Corporate Practice Team at Mission Measurement, a social impact consulting firm based in Chicago. Their presentations will focus on the nuts and bolts of sustainability and the role of sustainability and ethics in the corporate world.

“There’s this misconception that green awareness and sustainability is only about recycling and reducing our carbon footprint but I think that’s an outdated perspective,” said M. Jeremie Yoder, the former Net Impact president and second-year MBA student. “Sustainability also refers to good business and I believe bringing students face-to-face with those who live that reality is an important opportunity.”

Nadia Dwight, the director of full-time MBA student services and Net Impact adviser, said the program fulfills the Tippie MBA’s mission of developing socially responsible leaders.

“We have an ethical behavior here that we ask students to uphold,” said Dwight. “It’s about being responsible for your own actions both here as a student and as you move forward into the business world. My hope is that students have a broader and deeper understanding of what it means to be socially responsible.”

Students in the UI graduate MBA program are required to attend but Net Impact, in conjunction with the UI Office of Sustainability, has extended invitations to other graduate programs across campus. Tickets can be purchased through the University Box Office at

Along with the Office of Sustainability, other sponsors include the Interdisciplinary Outreach Committee, the graduate School of Management, the MBA Association, and two UI professors -- Sara Rynes and David Collins.

More information about Net Impact is available online at

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500

MEDIA CONTACTS: Nadia Dwight, Tippie School of Management, 319-335-1042,; Tom Snee, University News Service,, 319-384-0010 (office), 319-541-8434 (cell); Tiffany Hung, writer.