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‘This working-day world’ UWG to host ‘Why Shakespeare?’ community lecture that marries English, business

William Shakespeare: Poet. Playwright. Actor. Entrepreneur? If you think about it, the 16th century Bard of Avon was a shrewd businessman for his time. As part owner of London’s Globe Theatre and a member of acting company Lord Chamberlain’s Men, he was arguably one of the first people to make a sustainable profit off of popular entertainment, which he then invested in other ventures.

Dr. David Weiss will delve further into the topic in “Why Shakespeare?”, hosted by the University of West Georgia’s College of Arts, Culture and Scientific Inquiry (CACSI) and Richards College of Business. Sponsored by Milestone Investment Management, the community lecture will be held on Thursday, Sept. 1, at 7 p.m. in the Carrollton Center for the Arts.

A reception for the Shakespearean event, as well as the opening of an exhibition by UWG theatre faculty, will precede the main event from 5-7 p.m. All are free and open to the public.

The community lecture is part of a two-day executive-in-residence program that includes campus lectures to English and business majors on how one can learn leadership skills from Shakespeare.

“My wife, Andrea, and I are proud to help bring a unique program such as this to our community,” said Michael Stone, CEO and founder of Milestone Investment Management. “We believe the students of UWG will greatly benefit from hearing from Dr. Weiss and his practical lessons from Shakespeare’s plays and how those lessons can be applied to the modern working world, and we believe attendees to the evening lecture will also be able to relate to many of the quotes and quips from Shakespeare that will highlight the evening lecture.”

Weiss is a part-time English instructor at Georgia Gwinnett College. He earned his Ph.D. in English literature from the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom and the Shakespeare Institute in Stratford-Upon-Avon after retiring as the CFO of a Fortune 1000 company.

“‘Why Shakespeare’ provides a wonderful opportunity for the UWG and local community to learn more about becoming successful leaders through the lens of Shakespeare’s writings,” said Dr. Christopher Johnson, dean of the Richards College of Business. “Dr. Weiss blends his background in both business and the arts to bring a unique approach to understanding best practices for effective leadership. The program will be one that is enlightening and enriching for our community.”

CACSI Dean Dr. Pauline Gagnon used some of Shakespeare’s own words, penned more than 400 years ago, to describe her excitement for the event.

“We are so pleased that Michael and Andrea Stone chose to honor our spirit of interdisciplinarity with their support of this collaborative event between CACSI and the Richards College of Business,” she said. “Linking Shakespeare’s plays to the world of management is truly brilliant, and our students and community members will benefit greatly. Dr. Weiss brings much wisdom and experience to this topic. I look forward to hearing his insights on, as the bard himself called, ‘this working-day world.’”

by Julie Lineback

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