The Chamber showcases faculty member’s ‘Big Ideas’

Reynolds School Assistant Professor Bob Felten featured as inaugural speaker, focuses on lessons learned from working with students

The Chamber showcases faculty member’s ‘Big Ideas’

Reynolds School Assistant Professor Bob Felten featured as inaugural speaker, focuses on lessons learned from working with students

A new monthly event brings together The Chamber and the Nevada Museum of Art to showcase inspiring faculty members from the University of Nevada, Reno. The Big Ideas series begins April 30, 5:30-6:30 p.m. in the NMOA Auditorium and will feature Bob Felten, assistant professor in the Reynolds School of Journalism and Center for Advanced Media Studies.

The Chamber is sponsoring the program to help integrate the University and the business and arts communities.

"When you went to college, the most memorable professors stimulated new ideas and inspired you to think outside the box," said Tim Ruffin, a commercial realtor and 2013 board chair of The Chamber, a regional Chamber of Commerce organization representing northern Nevada businesses, organizations and individuals. "Through this program I want our community to see how good our professors are."

Felten's passion for mentoring students has been affirmed through numerous recognitions. A University alumnus who has taught at the University since 2000, Felten has been selected as the outstanding faculty mentor by the Reynolds School's Senior Scholar multiple times. Reno News and Review named Felten the region's Best College Instructor in 2012, a category for which Felten had been included in the top three for several years.

"It is very humbling to receive such recognition," said Felten. "We are here to positively impact our students. I like to think this reflects my efforts to help our students learn and grow."

Felten serves as lead coach to the University's Integrated Marketing Communications competition team made up of students from the Reynolds School and the College of Business. Over the past 11 years, Felten's teams have won six regional titles, placed among the top ten in the national competition three times and were the national champions in 2003. The National Student Advertising Competition is a program of the American Advertising Federation.

Lessons learned from working with students after a long career in the private sector will be at the heart of Felten's Big Ideas presentation.

The series will continue with a free, one-hour presentation by a faculty member on the last Tuesday evening of each month. Ruffin sees the program as melding several aspects that contribute to the vibrancy of the community: the University, NMOA, Mid Town, The Chamber and the business community.

"If you live in a town that has this amenity, take advantage of it," he said of the University and its faculty. "Let's put this in front of the community and do more to integrate the University and the community."

An additional, quarterly program hosted by The Chamber, Breakfast with the Deans, is further introducing the business community to the role and impact of the University's colleges. The program launched Feb. 28 with a well-attended and well-received presentation by Greg Mosier, dean of the College of Business.

Breakfast with the Deans continues on May 9 with a presentation by Tom Schwenk, vice president of the Division of Health Sciences and dean of the University of Nevada School of Medicine.

"It has been wonderful to see this interest in the University," said Heidi Gansert, University special assistant to the president for external affairs. "The Chamber is really leading the way in helping its members better understand the many dimensions of the University and how we positively engage with our region's economy and quality of life."

For more information or to register for The Chamber's Big Ideas and Breakfast with the Deans programs, visit and click events, or call at 775-636-9550.

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