Kirk Snyder

USC Marshall School of Business
Kirk Snyder
Photo by Steve Cohn Photography

“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” While I cannot take credit for this very insightful quote about the power of mentoring widely attributed to Benjamin Franklin—even though we do share the same birthday—the words perfectly sum up my own aspirational goal as a mentor for my students. In addition to the vital and relevant curriculum we provide our students at USC, there is another critical layer that should be equally important—involving students personally in the acquisition of knowledge. In my mind, that simply cannot happen without listening and providing value to the ideas and dreams of students as unique individuals. By understanding what is important to each student, I believe I have a better chance of turning on a light bulb or two about why the knowledge I provide matters as they travel their own road to success. When the learning experience becomes personal, only then do I feel that I have lived up to my role as a USC professor and mentor as well as a Trojan.

Many years ago as an undergraduate business student at USC, I was fortunate enough to have two professors in particular who made the learning experience personal by providing value to my own ideas and dreams. I am beyond honored to receive this award, and thank all of my students who have given me the privilege of listening to their goals and dreams—I believe in you!