Join Us for a Kellogg Tradition

One last opportunity to hear your favorite faculty members speak

Nota Bene is a series of lectures throughout April and May that lead up to convocation. These lectures provide graduating Full-Time and Evening & Weekend MBA students with one last chance to hear from some of Kellogg's favorite professors.

Mitchell Petersen
April 14, 5:15-6:15 P.M. (VIRTUAL)


Mitchell Petersen
Glen Vasel Professor of Finance
Director of the Heizer Center for Private Equity and Venture Capital

The Theory of Finance: Is it a good guide for Life's Big Decisions?

In class, we spend a significant amount of time developing the theory of finance, focusing on questions where value can be expressed in monetary terms. How should firms raise capital? How the firms should invest their capital? Which project should firms take? But does the logic of finance that we teach in class have any relevance for the truly big investment decisions you must make in life? Professor Petersen will explore this question by examining several of the largest personal investment decisions you may make, skipping the math and statistics and instead focusing on the stories.

Victoria Medvec
May 11, 5:15-6:15 p.m. (VIRTUAL)


Victoria Medvec
Adeline Barry Davee Professor of Management & Organizations
Executive Director of the Center for Executive Women


COVID-19 has created unprecedented disruption and complication in the global economy this year. As you enter the next phase in your career, you will likely encounter a number of challenging situations, including limited resources at your company, a distracting environment, and general uncertainty in both internal and external interactions at your position.

In her talk, Professor Medvec will discuss the many factors complicating negotiations today, and how applying negotiation strategies to the unique, unprecedented situations you will encounter can help you succeed in the face of uncertainty. She will highlight how Kellogg graduates have a strong background that they can leverage to position themselves effectively during this time and negotiate to optimize outcomes for both their organizations and their own careers. 


Carter Cast
May 21, 5:15-6:15 p.m. (VIRTUAL)


Carter Cast
Michael S. and Mary Sue Shannon Clinical Endowed Professor

NOTEs to Myself

This talk is about a handful of life management principles that Professor Cast landed on after going through a tough personal stretch. He asked himself, “How can I bring my best self to my family, to my friends, to my work, to my life?” and came up with a few answers that help him better navigate through his life.

Brooke Vuckovic
June 2, 5:15-6:15 p.m. (VIRTUAL)


Brooke Vuckovic
Clinical Professor of Leadership


As students leave Kellogg, Professor Vuckovic is frequently asked the following question: “What should I do to keep learning and developing as a leader?” One unexpected answer: Read. Read widely and well. In this talk, Prof Vuckovic will show you how literary fiction illuminates key issues you will face as a leader. She will explore these lessons in literature, in her own life, and end with a few ideas about developing this discipline. 

David Besanko
June 16, 5:15-6:15 p.m. (VIRTUAL)


David Besanko
IBM Professor of Regulation & Competitive Practices

Reflections on “Tragedy” in Business, Markets and Society

The conventional concept of tragedy is that it is an unexpectedly devastating event that upends and possibly changes our lives. But tragedy’s origins are actually in art—after all, tragedy is first and foremost a dramatic form, just as comedy, melodrama, or history are also dramatic forms.  And while the focus of dramatic tragedy is indeed human suffering, it is suffering of a particular kind: suffering that cannot be stopped despite our best efforts as humans to stop the events that lead to it. As British mathematician and philosopher Alfred North Whitehead put it in his book, Science and the Modern World, “The essence of dramatic tragedy is not unhappiness. It resides in the solemnity of the remorseless workings of things.”

Seen this way, we can find many interesting examples of dramatic tragedy—the remorseless workings of things—that unfold in business, markets, and society. And though a session on tragedy might not seem like a natural topic for Grad Week, the message of this Nota Bene talk is, I think, an uplifting one: with what you have learned in your years at Kellogg you are in a position not only to understand the kinds of tragedy that can arise in business, markets, and society, but to avoid and even overcome them. This is something to be savored and perhaps even celebrated.

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