RWU graduate students to serve as crisis consultants to Greek and R.I. businesses

BRISTOL – Two cohorts of Roger Williams University MBA students will participate in a nine-day program over the next two academic years acting as consultants exploring crisis management and business strategies developed across multiple industries within Greece.

The university said its Mario J. Gabelli School of Business has partnered with the American College of Greece to develop this program, with the connection being facilitated by RWU President Ioannis N. Miaoulis – a native of Greece.

Additionally, the program won a U.S. Department of Education Business and International Education Program competition that provided RWU with $184,094, or half the total project cost, to finance the international cohort program, the university said. The matching amount for the project, RWU said, will be provided from nonfederal resources.

RWU said the students will connect online with Greek business owners, followed by an in-person meeting, to evaluate the businesses’ responses to the 2008 economic crisis and the COVID-19 pandemic that heavily impacted the country. The students will then offer recommendations on what worked in Greece and what didn’t, the university said, and then share their lessons from Greece in a crisis management symposium for business owners in Rhode Island.

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“This program will be diving into the nuances of crisis management, an issue that isn’t covered enough in mainstream business but is becoming increasingly urgent for organizations to understand and prepare for,” Jason Oliver, director of RWU’s MBA program, said in a statement. “This is the kind of opportunity that will demonstrate the uniqueness of our students’ education and the fact that they gained real-world experience working with actual clients on an issue that impacts every industry.”

James Bessette is the PBN special projects editor, and also covers the nonprofit and education sectors. You may reach him at You may also follow him on Twitter at @James_Bessette.