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George Vlahakis

Margaret Garrison
Kelley School

Last modified: Friday, May 3, 2002

Kelley MBA captures top international student leadership award

Kristina Alkire came to Indiana University's Kelley School of Business to prepare for a future career in retailing. Not only did she earn a master of business administration degree and land a job at the nation's leading retailer, but she emerged as a proven leader.

Alkire, from Warrensburg, Mo., received the 2002 Student Leadership Award recently at the Graduate Business Foundation's annual meeting in Atlanta, Ga. The award is presented to the individual "best exemplifying the Graduate Business Foundation ideals of leadership and innovation within the graduate business community."

Alkire will receive her IU degree on Saturday (May 4).

She won out over competing MBA students from business schools at Duke, Emory and Cornell universities, the University of Michigan, and the Stockholm School of Economics, among others.

Terrill Cosgray, director of Kelley's MBA programs, described Alkire as "an exceptional achiever and a natural leader."

Alkire served as vice president for professional development of the Kelley School's MBA Association, where she created a manual and orientation program for the professional development of all Kelley School first-year MBA students. The program covered everything from resume writing and interviewing to corporate etiquette and information for the assessment process in Kelley's Leadership Development Institute.

She also spearheaded "Kelley Kick-Off," an event that hosted 15 recruiters who conducted mock interviews with 200 students. Much of her project was created during her Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. She also was active in mentoring students through the Graduate Women in Business organization.

Before coming to the Kelley School, Alkire had been an assistant in the Office of Planning and Budget at the University of Missouri. She prepared monthly reports on the university system's administrative operating budget and analyzed general revenue estimates from the state of Missouri.

She will work at Sears Roebuck and Co., in Hoffman Estates, Ill., as a strategy analyst with Sears' corporate strategy group. She interned with Sears in that group while she was a Kelley School student.

"I came for Kelley's open environment and responsive faculty," Alkire said, "and everything here exceeded my expectations."