Retired business executive Bill Elwell has won the 2012-2013 Patrick J. Scullion Excellence in Adjunct Teaching Award in LTU’s College of Management.
Elwell began teaching on a part-time basis at LTU in the fall of 2008, the year before he took an early retirement as director of advertising and strategic communications at Blue Cross Blue Shield and Blue Care Network of Michigan.
He has taught the introductory business course in the College of Management and classes on business principles, supervision, marketing and business law to high school seniors who come to LTU to earn college credits, under the dual enrollment program conducted by the provost’s office.
“A number of my students in the high school classes have come to LTU,” Elwell said.
An LTU student nominated Elwell for the teaching award for helping him decide what direction to take in his business career. The student started the semester with the vague ambition to start his own business, but he didn’t know what to do or how to do it.
“The knowledge that I have acquired from him through his preparation and personal experience has helped me immensely in what is now the creation of my own personal business plan, and in defining my path for the future,” the student wrote. “After all, is that not the whole purpose of college in the long run?”
Elwell said he enjoys the challenge of teaching students how business theories apply in the real world. “Here’s the theory, and here’s the practicality of putting it in place,” Elwell said. “I’ve worked for fairly large companies and that’s been helpful in teaching.”
Elwell also has more than 20 years of experience as a marketing executive in the banking industry. For six years he was first vice president and manager for brand and corporate marketing communications for Comerica before leaving that position to join Blue Cross in 2000.
He earned a degree in economics with a minor in education while an undergraduate at Eastern Michigan University, and went back to EMU for a master’s degree in economics and marketing. During his banking career, he taught several classes on finance, marketing and accounting to people who were new to the industry.
He is grateful for the opportunity to pursue his interest in teaching at LTU. “I didn’t want to stop doing things when I retired,” he said.
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