Thursday, June 4, 2009

Dobre Makes An International Impact

Ferris graduate puts Finance degree to work in Middle East

BIG RAPIDS – Striking a balance between Islamic culture and modern banking practices presented Mircea Dobre and his team of fellow graduate students from the University of Chicago with quite a challenge: to help Barclay’s Bank (based in the United Kingdom) operate efficiently, find ways to profit, while adhering to Muslim beliefs that prohibit charging and collecting interest.

That challenge was issued and eagerly accepted in 2008. Dobre, a 2001 Ferris State University graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Finance, traveled with his diverse seven-member team on a 10-week mission to the Middle East, with stops in Dubai, United Arab Emirates and Cairo. The group also journeyed to London, England, during a period from April through June. To accommodate the trip, Dobre was granted a sabbatical by R.W. Baird, a Grand Rapids-based consulting firm, where he is a senior investment consultant.

“We went there as advisers and our function was to assist Barclay’s with a plan that would allow them to function effectively as a bank and accomplish two major things,” said Dobre, who is pursuing his MBA in economics with concentrations in accounting and finance from the University of Chicago. “Number one, we needed to help them to function while not being able to charge interest because there is a prohibition against charging interest. Number two, banking has to be a partnership with risk-sharing between the bank and the customer.”

For the complete story of Dobre's trip to the Middle East, visit:

For a profile of Dobre, visit:

Ferris Graduate Presents An Alaskan Survival Guide

Bellinger sees Alaska as "larger than life in many, many ways"

Brookelyn Bellinger (EHS '97) is a renaissance woman in a Carhartt coat. She is the author of The Frozen Toe Guide to Real Alaskan Livin': Learn How to Survive Moose Attacks, Endless Winters & Life Without Indoor Plumbing.

She is a singer-songwriter who has released a CD entitled Dance With Me, and been the opening act for Laura Love, Jeff Lang and Nanci Griffith. A self-taught filmmaker, she is in post-production on a documentary about the extreme Mount Marathon foot race in Seward.

She has also used an outhouse at 50 below zero.

"Alaska is larger than life in many, many ways. There's a unique group of people who live here," says Bellinger, whose description clearly includes herself. She says that the state has "quirkiness beyond measure."

For the complete version of Brookelyn Bellinger's unique story, visit:

Successful Ferris Graduates: Russ Miller

Miller rises as director of of golf at The Broadmoor

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - The time is 6:51 according to a large, gold-bezeled Rolex clock. The spectators who are already milling around the first tee of The Broadmoor’s East Course make way for an early-morning gaggle of goslings heading toward the water that guards the third green. Inside the ropes, a technician plants a wooly-looking microphone near the tee markers to capture the sound of driver striking ball. There is a basket of fruit and a cooler of bottled water for the players and caddies.

Only a few scattered clouds dot the blue Colorado sky as the sun begins to beat down on a day that weather forecasters predict will reach a high of 97 degrees. People begin taking seats in the grandstands, which are full by the time Tom Carey, the first golfer to tee off in the second round of the 2008 U.S. Senior Open, launches his ball toward looming Cheyenne Mountain.

Although temperatures will be near record highs, there is no rain in the forecast. The white canvas concession stands that will soon be doing a brisk business in hot dogs and Coors beer now lend a certain bucolic feel to the scene. Fan favorite Fred Funk is in the lead at 5-under par, and Greg Norman, who just two weeks earlier finished tied for third at the British Open, is also near the top of the leader board.

For Ferris State University graduate Russ Miller (B’87), director of golf at The Broadmoor, all is right with the world.

For the complete Miller story, visit:

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Great Times And Tough Times For Bulldog Hockey Fans

It the Stanley Cup Finals … It’s Hard Out Here For A Ferris State University Bulldog

BIG RAPIDS – This year’s Stanley Cup Finals have been an emotional tug of war for so many hockey fans at Ferris State University.

On the one side, many of us have grown up as fans of the Detroit Red Wings – one of the legendary and most recognizable franchises in all of professional sports. The winged wheel, for many people, has become synonymous with professional ice hockey success. Detroit, in the hockey world is “Hockeytown.” Those of us born and/or raised in the state of Michigan, particularly those who have or used to call Southeast Michigan home, tend to have a strong affinity for the Wings.

Watching the Wings play for the Stanley Cup never gets old – not even in Hockeytown – a place that so often has been home to Lord Stanley’s Cup.

This year’s trip to the Stanley Cup Finals is a little different for so many fans of the Red Wings. A large number of fans living in Big Rapids, or Bulldogs who live outside of Big Rapids, have been a bit conflicted.

Sure, we love our Red Wings.

But, we also love our Bulldogs, too – past, present and future Bulldogs.

Opposing the Red Wings, on the other side of this Stanley Cup Finals equation, is former Bulldog All-American Chris Kunitz. It’s hard to think of Bulldog hockey and not think of Chris. Our community swelled with pride as Chris, as a member of the Anaheim Ducks, brought the Stanley Cup to Big Rapids – to share that one-of-a-kind experience with Ferris. It was an unbelievably gracious gesture to bring the Cup to Ferris – the place where he blossomed as a hockey star and turned dreams of becoming a National Hockey League star into reality.

Chris enjoyed a meteoric rise to national college hockey prominence, at Ferris. He became an All-American and a Hobey Baker Award finalist during his senior season in crimson and gold colors as he tallied 79 points on 35 goals with 44 assists – the kind of season most people can only dream of.

Chris, as so many of us now know, no longer plays for the Anaheim Ducks.

These days, Chris is playing for the upstart Pittsburgh Penguins – alongside two of the sports great stars, Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin.

These days, Chris is playing in the Stanley Cup Finals.

These days, Chris is battling the Wings … for Lord Stanley’s Cup.

This year’s Stanley Cup Finals pit one of our favorite sons, Chris Kunitz, against our beloved Detroit Red Wings – the team many Michiganders grew up loving.

Yes, it’s a heart-wrenching experience.

But, if you love professional hockey … you probably are in hockey heaven these days as this series between the Penguins and Red Wings heats up.

It begs the questions: What are the emotions of Ferris State University people watching Chris Kunitz battling the Detroit Red Wings?

Chris Kunitz Featured on

Check out this feature story on the pride of the Bulldogs, Chris Kunitz.

Monday, June 1, 2009

The Ferris Ospreys Hatch One Chick

The first of 3 chicks has hatched....check out the Campus Osprey Web Cam to see!!
Click on the image for a full view....visit the Osprey Web Cam at

Bulldog Great Chris Kunitz in Stanley Cup Finals (Again)

Former Ferris State Skater Setting Sights On Winning Lord Stanley's Cup
Photo Courtesy of Pittsburgh Penguins

Living the dream.

For the second time in his professional career, former Ferris State University standout Chris Kunitz is appearing on the national stage with aspirations of winning the National Hockey League's (NHL) Stanley Cup as a 2008-09 member of the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Kunitz and the Penguins are squaring off against the defending Stanley Cup champion Detroit Red Wings in a best-of-seven 2009 Stanley Cup Final series, which began last weekend with a pair of Detroit victories. Pittsburgh has advanced to the finals for the second straight season after winning the Prince of Wales Trophy as the NHL's Eastern Conference Champions with a 4-0 series sweep over the Carolina Hurricanes.

Kunitz, who has presently tallied a career-best 12 post-season points with a goal and 11 assists in 19 playoff games this season for Pittsburgh, is hopeful his second appearance in the NHL Finals is just as rewarding as the first time. Just two years ago, Kunitz was an integral component in leading the 2006-07 Anaheim Ducks to their first-ever Lord Stanley's Cup with a 4-1 series victory against the Ottawa Senators.

The treasured opportunity for Kunitz this spring wouldn't have been possible if not for a transaction between Anaheim and Pittsburgh on Feb. 26. Kunitz along with a prospect were shipped off to Pittsburgh in exchange for Ryan Whitney six days prior to the NHL trade deadline.

Now Ferris State's most decorated skater is one series away from putting another Stanley Cup ring on his finger.

This season has been a productive one for the Kunitz, who registered 23 goals and 30 assists for 53 points in a combined 82 regular-season outings with Anaheim and Pittsburgh. The Regina, Saskatchewan native also generated a point in 12 of his 20 regular-season contests with Pittsburgh.

The 6-0, 193-pound left wing spent parts of five seasons (2003-04; 2005-present) with the Anaheim Ducks before his trade to Pittsburgh.

As a collegian at Ferris State, Kunitz excelled during his 2002-03 senior season by garnering American Hockey Coaches Association (AHCA) All-America First-Team honors and was among the final three 2003 finalists for the Hobey Baker Memorial Award as college hockey's top player. A two-time (2001-02 and 2002-03) Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) First-Team pick, Kunitz became the first Bulldog skater to earn CCHA Player of the Year honors after leading the league in points, goals, assists, and plus/minus for the 2002-03 campaign.

Kunitz concluded his stellar career ranking tied for sixth in career points (175), second in goals (99) and 18th in assists (76) in 152 contests. He played an integral role in leading the 2002-03 Bulldogs to a school-best 31-10-1 overall record, the school's first-ever CCHA Regular-Season Championship title and the program's first-ever NCAA Division I Championship Tournament appearance. Kunitz was also recognized as the male student-athlete recipient of the 2002-03 Bulldog of the Year Award, which is presented annually to the most outstanding Ferris State student-athlete.


Saturday, May 30 at Detroit, 8 pm -- NBC, CBC, RDS
Sunday, May 31 at Detroit, TBD-Evening -- NBC, CBC, RDS
Tuesday, June 2 at Pittsburgh, 8 pm -- VERSUS, CBC, RDS
Thursday, June 4 at Pittsburgh, 8 pm -- VERSUS, CBC, RDS
* Saturday, June 6 at Detroit, 8 pm -- NBC, CBC, RDS
* Tuesday, June 9 at Pittsburgh, 8 pm -- NBC, CBC, RDS
* Friday, June 12 at Detroit, 8:00 pm -- NBC, CBC, RDS

* denotes if necessary
All start times are Eastern Daylight (EDT)