“The commitment to student success is huge at FGCU. They are also very focused on community partnerships. There’s not just a family here among students and faculty, but among the greater community as well.”
Dr. Ashley Mandeville has a clever interviewing technique she teaches to her business students—observe the people interviewing you. Do they seem happy? Is their appearance disheveled? Do they seem engaged in their work? If they aren’t happy, alert and engaged, there may be an issue in their workplace.
When Ashley graduated with her Ph.D., she attended the Academy of Management Conference where she had 16 interviews lined up. She applied her technique and gravitated toward the FGCU table where the faculty were laughing, engaged and eager to share their stories. They were also tan, indicating not just their Floridian roots, but also a work-life balance. She also visited the website to see who else taught there and was piqued by the faculty’s impressive backgrounds. Finally, she visited campus to see if her observations stood up. And they did.
Since starting her professorship at FGCU in Fall 2017, Ashley has been impressed with the balance between research, teaching and community engagement. She was pregnant twice when she was a Ph.D. student, so her current research centers on the differences between when men and women disclose their upcoming parenthood in the workplace and the differences in response to those announcements. While she started that research prior to FGCU, her continued work is supported and future projects are encouraged. In addition to continuing her research, she will teach two or three courses each semester and is beginning to work more with the community, as well.
Another area of research Ashley favors is testing assumptions in the workplace. So did her assumptions about her new workplace hold out? To that, she replies, “I’m still feeling the energy that brought me here. I see it in the research people are doing and in the commitment to the students. Everyone is really engaged and wanting to make the students successful.”