The Paul Dickinson College of Business at OBU hosted its spring business forum Friday, March 8. The event took place in Tulsa Royalties Auditorium inside Bailey Business Center on the OBU campus in Shawnee. The forum included a panel with three OBU alumni who gave advice and guidance to students, including Nate Geist, Brad Johnson and Doug Ledbetter.

Geist graduated from OBU in 2005 with degrees in accounting and finance. He spent 10 years as a CPA in Oklahoma City before joining Edward Jones in 2015. He now offices in the Quail Springs area of northwest Oklahoma City.

Johnson also graduated in 2005 with a degree in accounting and a minor in mathematics. He joined Finley and Cook’s audit practice following graduation. In 2009, he began working at the Baptist Foundation of Oklahoma where he served as vice president and controller for eight years. In 2018, he was promoted to senior vice president and CFO.

Ledbetter, also a 2005 graduate, earned degrees in accounting and finance. He joined Ernst and Young’s Oklahoma City audit practice upon graduation. In 2010, he transferred to the company’s Wichita office where he was promoted to partner in 2017. In Wichita, he works with several public and private companies in the aerospace, commodities and manufacturing sectors.

Each of the alumni spent time describing to students where they are now and how they got there from OBU. They also discussed how, when they were searching for jobs, they looked at companies that aligned with their beliefs.

“Although I work for a secular organization, their values align with my beliefs,” Ledbetter said. “That has been very helpful to me to be able to live in a way that is honoring God through my business career.”

Geist encouraged students to work every day and do the best they can. He reminded them that each day matters when working toward long-term goals.

Johnson encouraged the audience to build relationships and use those relationships to their advantage, while also giving their best effort for even routine daily tasks.

“Don’t be afraid to reach out and build those relationships,” he said. “Take a small task and take it seriously. Take that ownership mindset and start applying it immediately. Innovate and make it better, make it faster. People will notice that.”

For more information about OBU’s Paul Dickinson College of Business, or to view this business forum, visit www.okbu.edu/business.

With its campus located in Shawnee, OBU offers 10 bachelor’s degrees with 88 fields of study and five master’s degree programs. The Christian liberal arts university has an overall enrollment of 2,011, with students from 37 states and 40 other countries. OBU has been rated as one of the top 10 regional colleges in the West by U.S. News and World Report for 27 consecutive years and has been Oklahoma’s highest rated regional college in the U.S. News rankings for 25 consecutive years. OBU is one of three universities in Oklahoma and the only private Oklahoma university listed on Great Value College’s rankings of 50 Great Affordable Colleges in the Midwest. The Wall Street Journal ranks OBU second in the nation for student engagement among all U.S. colleges and universities. Forbes.com consistently ranks OBU as a top university in Oklahoma and the Princeton Review has named OBU one of the best colleges and universities in the western United States for 14 consecutive years.