The UNO CBA Student Excellence series highlights several of the outstanding students at the college who were recently recognized for their accomplishments at the 2019 Beta Gamma Sigma Honors and Awards Ceremony. UNO CBA students are diverse, multitalented, and hard-working, and they graduate as intelligent and ambitious business leaders with the knowledge they need to make an impact. Learn more about why we're proud of Chris Winchester, honored for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Management, and Marketing, below.
BSBA in Management, Marketing, and Entrepreneurship
Honors and Involvement
Senior Vice Chancellor Outstanding Undergraduate Student Award
CBA Student of the Year
Phi Kappa Phi
Beta Gamma Sigma
Omicron Delta Kappa
Honored at department ceremonies for Management, Marketing, and Entrepreneurship
Recipient of the Delta Sigma Pi Scholarship Key
Why did you choose to attend UNO?
"I chose to attend UNO for a plethora of reasons, but it all boils down to the numerous possibilities I would have here. I had actually developed a spreadsheet and numbering system for more than 30 different factors I was considering amongst colleges and UNO clearly won in the end.
"For starters, UNO is great for accepting dual enrollment/AP credits, it is extremely affordable, and it offers a myriad of astounding resources, courses, faculty, and students. However, the key piece that drove me to choose UNO was the CBA Scholars Academy run by Bethany Hughes. This is a program that consists of four cohorts of 20 students each (one cohort per year) and offers mentors from the business community, select advanced courses, unique business visits, amazing friendships, and very generous scholarships. This collective program drove me to UNO and was my final deciding factor in going here, so you can thank the Scholars Academy for making sure I walked through the doors of Mammel Hall and never left."
Have you had a favorite class at UNO? Why was it your favorite?
"My favorite class at UNO was my Honors and Scholars Academy Applied Leadership course with Dr. Ligon. This course was very hands-on and focused on my research interest of leadership and leadership theories. During this class I was able to complete a service learning project in which I co-founded the Career Skills Workshop. This was a day-long workshop that a group of three Scholars and I put on to provide business skills to high schoolers from all backgrounds across the state of Nebraska.
"Without this class, I never would have been able to do this project and this became something I did again the following year so it was wonderful to see it carry beyond the classroom. Because Applied Leadership combined this hands-on learning activity with my favorite research topic of leadership taught by one of the most amazing professors makes this a clear favorite for me."
How has attending UNO CBA helped you to achieve your personal and professional goals?
"UNO CBA has been an integral part to my growth as an academic, within my career, and as an individual. I would not be where I am today if I had not attended UNO's CBA and I owe a lot to the amazing programs, top-notch faculty, and stellar facilities and resources that CBA offers. I may be biased, but amongst all the classes I have taken, there is a clear difference in the level of faculty that CBA offers including experienced professors and world-renowned research faculty. Learning from them has made my passion for learning even stronger than before I came here.
"In addition, the Koraleski Commerce and Applied Behavioral Laboratory has given me hands-on experience in writing, proctoring, and analyzing advanced research studies which is a rare resource for a business college to boast.
"Finally, Mammel Hall itself has been a stellar addition to my learning. From the sustainable features to the breakout rooms, this building has fostered my academic success better than any college building could. Everything that CBA offers has enabled me to be where I am at today and has instilled the confidence and capabilities within me to achieve my personal, academic, and professional goals."
What's your dream job? What pursuits or goals do you have for the future?
"My ultimate goal is to earn my MBA and PhD in Organizational Behavior. I want to use this knowledge to become a professor and do as much research as I can to add to my fields of interest which include organizational behavior, leadership, management, and entrepreneurship.
"In addition to these academic endeavors, I plan on opening at least one other business, if not more, because I love being able to provide my community with a product that can help them. Not to mention I love being my own boss too. I get bored quickly so I am always looking to experience something new so I can see myself starting multiple businesses, being an executive for a Fortune 500 company, and a professor at a University (who knows, maybe even a professor here at UNO someday).
"Obviously this won't all be at once, but I am never satisfied with doing the best I can do right now. I know I can always improve and I strive for those improvements every day, and this will be reflected in my ever-changing and evolving future career plans."
What parts of your CBA journey are you most proud of?
"My biggest struggle came during the first semester of my second year here. A disease had been manifesting in my stomach since high school and it had once again flared up, meaning I had to miss an entire month of school. This resulted in a little over three weeks of missed classes, not being able to run my organizations, not being able to work, and not able to further my educational or career goals because I had to stop and take care of myself first. During this time, I was forced to a strict diet of basically just oats and water paired with a lot of sleep.
"CBA, my professors, classmates, family, and friends were stellar at taking care of me during this time. Everyone worked with me before, during, and after to get all my work done, delegate responsibilities, and allow me time and resources to complete everything. I came back not fully healed but very close after a very difficult month and because of the love and support from everyone, I was still able to run my organizations, complete my work, and finish every class with straight A's. This is something I could not have done alone, and I certainly could not have done this without the help of everyone around me."
What has been the top highlight of your CBA experience?
"Picking the top highlight is near impossible because I have had so many wonderful opportunities and experiences at UNO. However, if I have to pick just one, the top highlight of my CBA experience was traveling to San Franciso with the entrepreneurship program run by Dr. Eesley. This was a week-long trip during spring break where I was able to tour multiple businesses and start-ups in San Francisco and the surrounding area. This included places such as Google, Facebook, Apple, and Monday Motorbikes, a start-up from a UNO alumnus.
"It was inspiring, educational, and overall breath-taking to visit these places along with the state of California. I love entrepreneurship and being able to visit successful businesses at various stages provided me with new insight and dreams for where I can take my start-ups in the future. In addition, this trip was paid for through the entrepreneurship program due to the generous donations and fundraising activities, which made it even more special to me. This was by far one of the best experiences I have had at CBA."
If you could tell someone about UNO CBA, what would you say?
"I am beyond proud of what this college has done. Look at all of the students, professors, resources, staff, and the list goes on and on. You can't find a place quite like UNO's CBA anywhere else. This is the best business college in the entire state and I would argue in the entire midwest. There are tons of different rankings for the best colleges for various programs, degrees, etc. However, the only ranking anyone should be concerned about is what our number one ranking is in the minds of hundreds if not thousands of people. CBA is a rare yet affordable gem that will give you more than you could ever imagine, and I stand firmly behind that statement."
And finally, if you could give a message to any prospective students interested in coming to UNO CBA, what would you tell them?
"Looking for the right college can be a very stressful task. I remember quite vividly looking at the best colleges to attend and where I wanted to go, and there's a reason I chose UNO CBA. We all want the best education, yet we all want to be able to afford college too. In my opinion, there's only one place to go to get both, and that's UNO CBA.
"People will tell you that you should always look to get into the best Ivy League universities but I strongly disagree with that. One piece of advice that I took from my high school guidance counselor was that it doesn't matter where you go to college, it matters what you do once you go there. UNO's CBA has all of the resources, capabilities, and potential for any student to achieve what they want as long as they are willing to put in the time and effort. This college is affordable and stellar at the same time, and this is a nearly impossible combination to find in today's saturated college marketplace. If you're interested in UNO CBA, there's no reason to consider any other college because you've already found the place you should be."