Brandman News

Brandman program, student organization reflect trends in human resources education

July 28, 2016 by Brandman University

Some of the members of the newly chartered Brandman University SHRM student chapter.

Brandman University’s revised Master of Science in human resources (MSHR) and the newly chartered student chapter of the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) are part of a larger shift in focus for human resources professionals.

“Our research, our feedback from advisory board members, all showed we need to change from a focus on functional competency to a strategic one. A lot of people land in HR because they like people or are good at training. They’re seen as helpers but not as strategic partners in the business,” said Sharon Floyd during a recent information session for prospective students for the MSHRprogram.

Among the outcomes the MSHR program now focuses on are business acumen, globalization and diversity, workforce planning, talent management, strategic leadership and data-driven decision-making.

The Brandman student chapter of SHRM echoes those goals. During the recent virtual installation of the inaugural set of officers, leaders from SHRM emphasized how the Brandman members could have an impact even before they finish their degrees.

Information about the SHRM student chapter is available by emailing
“You have fantastic opportunities. The skills you’re developing (as SHRM members) are worldwide skills and are transferable across industries and across the globe. You have the ability to change people’s lives,” said Jon Decoteau, divisional director for SHRM’s West Division.

“Taking a leadership role provides us with an additional vehicle to continue to work with the ideas and methods we all learn in the classroom,” said Manuel De La Torre, president of the student chapter.

The SHRM student chapter is open to any student interested in human resources, including doctoral level student such as De La Torre and MBA students such as Christine Juarez, who serves as the director of corporate relations for the SHRM chapter.

“I will have the opportunity to network with professionals and coordinate guest speakers for future chapter meetings. Beyond participating in regular student chapter meetings, I will have the opportunity to organize a variety of activities including company tours, interviewing workshops, fundraisers, and social events. All these activities are what led me to join the Brandman University SHRM,” said Juarez during the chartering ceremony.

Other officers include MSHR students Damon Devins, Jennifer Medina and Amanda Amiel and MBA students Jessica Lopez and Kiara Robinson.

Supporting the students as co-advisors are faculty members Kath Bates and Nina Woodard.

“This is my first opportunity to be a part of a student chapter and I am so honored and pleased to be part of the Brandman chapter,” said Woodard. “You are the future of the profession.”

Said Bates “My life’s mission and passion is supporting people who are trying to take charge of their lives (or organizations) through self-development, formal education, strategic change, crisis management.”

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