MBA student Cassi Matthews helped organize a recent panel discussion at the David Eccles School of Business that took on the important topic of diversity. Here, she shares her thoughts on the rationale behind the discussion, and some of what she learned.

Cassi writes: 

Diversity is a hot topic around the business school. There are a lot of misconceptions and ideas about it that leave a bad taste in many students’ mouths–not because students don’t care about equal rights, but because it is unclear how it affects the workplace.

When the idea to have a panel on diversity came up, my goal was to clear up these misconceptions, to give students a reason to grasp diversity efforts, and to show them how they can utilize and measure diversity once they are out in the business world.

The “Diversity to Dollars: Leveraging Employee Differences” panel came together perfectly, and the interest from faculty, staff, and local business executives made the project even more exciting! It is apparent that diversity is not just a hot topic at the business school, but also to executives and leaders in the business world.

Dr. Abe Bakhsheshy, professor in the Management department and Daniels Professor of Business Ethics, moderated the panel. As a leader of our Daniels Ethics Initiative, Dr. Abe’s participation in the event heightened the level of the ethical commitment we have as business leaders to include and accept all people regardless of race, gender, age, or sexual orientation.

Panelists included Senator Luz Robles, Jeanine Wilson from Corporate Talent Advisors, Connie DeIanni from Zion’s Bank, Mark Bishop from the LDS Church, and Mary Anne Berzins with the University of Utah. The level of experience and th