SOM Prof’s Winning Style Brings Teaching Award

It was 1996, and it was a momentous time for Professor Charles Hazzard’s two children. His daughter was about to graduate from college, and his son was on the verge of taking the University of Florida baseball team to the College World Series.

The hitch? Both were happening at the same time.

Realizing they couldn’t be at two places simultaneously, Hazzard, a clinical professor in the School of Management, and his wife decided to fly to Florida to catch as many NCAA East Regional playoff games as possible before flying back to see their daughter graduate from UT Dallas.

The morning of their daughter’s graduation, Hazzard and his wife, Carol, left Gainesville, listening to that day’s game on a cell phone all the way to the ceremony. At the exact moment that their daughter, Mandy, walked across the stage to receive her diploma, their son, Chuck, hit a 13th-inning home run to send Florida on to the national championships.

“It was such an emotional moment in our lives and one I’ll never forget,” Hazzard said.

Hazzard has recounted the story a number of times over the past 15 years — including to UT Dallas President David Daniel as they sat on stage at the May convocation ceremony, where Hazzard  received the President’s Outstanding Teaching Award for non-tenure track faculty.

“When I told Dr. Daniel, he said, ‘That’s one of the best graduation stories I’ve ever heard,’ ” Hazzard said.

Since 1996, Hazzard, a former executive vice president at Occidental Petroleum (OxyChem), has made the switch from business to business education, where he has made a lasting impression with his students and other faculty members.

“He’s one of the most dedicated teachers in the School of Management. He’s here every day of the week and even on Saturdays because he wants to make sure he’s there for students who work,” said Dr. Tracey Rockett, a senior lecturer in Organizations, Strategy and International Management. “He’s really wonderful at showing students what they’re capable of, and he’s involved in students’ lives now and after they graduate. And they all know that his door is always open to them when he’s on campus.”

Hazzard was selected for the President’s Outstanding Teaching Award from among 400 eligible non-tenure track faculty members that undergraduate students nominated for the honor.

Among the remarks from students who nominated Hazzard for the award were: “He really teaches from his vast experience,” and “He shares his knowledge with a passion and really gets the students to think and engage in discussion.”

He also won the Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award from the School of Management in 2010.

Hazzard, who earned his MBA from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania retired as executive vice president of administration at OxyChem in 2000. Hazzard guest-lectured and taught classes at both SMU and UT Dallas before joining UT Dallas full time in 2006.

Hazzard teaches Contemporary Business Issues, a class he helped create, to undergraduate honors students and Full-Time MBA students, as well as undergraduate courses in honors International Business and Organizational Behavior.

Drawing on decades of experience in the private sector, Hazzard says he teaches students that what not to do is sometimes just as important as what to do in their careers.

“I also believe that attitude is everything. I tell my students that they have talent, but so do all the other thousands of college graduates. I ask them how they’re going to set themselves apart. It’s attitude. It’s all behavioral,” Hazzard said.

“Not many people get a chance at a second act, and here I am working 8 to 6 Monday through Friday, but I’m enjoying every minute of it,” Hazzard said.

“I tell my students that they have talent, but so do all the other thousands of college graduates. I ask them how they’re going to set themselves apart. It’s attitude. It’s all behavioral,” Professor Charles Hazzard says.

Media Contact: The Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, [email protected].