John C. Stophel Distinguished Student Award

The College of Business John C. Stophel Distinguished Student Award is presented annually to recognize high potential business students who have made significant and meaningful civic contributions to UTC and the College of Business while maintaining a strong academic record.

Students must provide evidence of exceptional extracurricular leadership and community service, strong leadership skills, self-motivating initiative, exceptional presentation skills, and a strong academic record with minimum GPA of 3.0.

Below are the 2011-2012 John C. Stophel Distinguished Students.


Undergraduate Students

Michael Bennett

Megan Hallar

Jonathan Mansfield

Josh Neighbors

Isaac Poore

Simona Vitali

Graduate Students

David Moore


Undergraduate Students


Michael Bennett

Michael is a human resources management major from Chattanooga, TN.

Michael is currently a human resources intern at Tennessee Valley Authority and was an Infantry Squad Leader for the Tennessee National Guard until November 2011. Michael has also conducted one combat tour as an Infantry Squad Leader in Afghanistan. He is a member of Beta Gamma Sigma and Sigma Iota Epsilon honors societies. Michael is also a member of the UTC College of Business SHRM chapter.

After graduation, Michael will be working as an Employee Relations Consultant for TVA and hopes to continue his business education by pursuing an MBA and completing the Professional in Human Resources SHRM certification exam.







Megan Hallar

Megan is a marketing major from White House, TN.

Megan was a student in the International Student Exchange Program at Johannes Kepler University Linz in Linz, Austria last fall. She has been involved in Delta Zeta Sorority as a mentor and Vice President of Programs, Student Alumni Council, the UTC H.O.P.E. Mentor Program as a mentor, the UTC Office of National and International Student Exchanges as an ambassador, and TEAMeffort Youth Mission Camps as a summer staff member. She is a part of Beta Gamma Sigma and Golden Key International Honor Society.

After graduation, Megan plans to start a full-time job and obtain a Master’s degree before 2015. She hopes to have a job that interests her and uses her skills to the fullest extent.






Jonathan Mansfield

Jonathan graduated in December 2011 as an entrepreneurship major from Chattanooga, TN.

Jonathan taught an 8-week Business Planning class for students at Howard High School where students learn the beginning skills of market research and business planning. He is a partner and head writer at D&J Identity and Strategy, a branding firm. Jonathan has also held an internship at The Company Lab and was a club officer for the Collegiate Entrepreneurs Organization at UTC.

Jonathan wants to invest in the lives of the people he works with and employs in his career. He wants to innovate and excel in the career he undertakes, provide for his family, travel the world, and give more than he takes from his colleagues and his community.






Josh-Neighbors Josh Neighbors

Josh graduated in December 2011 as a human resource management and general management major from Soddy Daisy, TN.

Josh is a member of Society for Human Resource Management, Golden Key International Honor Society, National Scholars Honor Society, National Society of Collegiate Scholars, Beta Gamma Sigma, and has been on the Dean’s List since fall of 2007. Josh has interned at the Unum Group as an HR Staffing Intern. He is also an active volunteer at Student Venture, the high school and middle school ministry of Cru (formerly Campus Crusade for Christ).

Currently, Josh is working in Client services with OrthoBanc, LLC. He hopes to gain experience to move up in the world of HR and acquire his PHR certification. He would like to be able to work overseas in Christian Ministry as well as obtaining a degree in Biblical Studies. Josh hopes to be able to combine these two degrees and work for management at a mission organization.




Isaac_Poore Isaac Poore

Isaac graduated in December 2011, magna cum laude, as an accounting and finance major from Kenton, TN.

Isaac is currently an intern in the tax department at Joseph Decosimo & Company. He has been actively involved with the Student Government Association at UTC holding many positions such as Environmental Task Force Member, Social Issues Committee Member, and SGA and Student Body Treasurer. Isaac is a student member of the state and local chapters of Tennessee Society of Certified Public Accountants as well as the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.


Isaac's plan for the future include obtaining his CPA certification while working in public accounting at a large firm.  He also plans to earn a master and doctorate in accounting with the hopes of teaching at the collegiate level.




Simona_Vitali Simona Vitali

Simona graduated in December 2011, summa cum laude, with a degree in finance. She is an international student originally from Lake Como, Italy.

Simona is co-founder and co-president of the Trading and Investment Club at UTC College of Business. She enjoys researching, analyzing, and learning about different companies, industries, and their market effect. She is currently a financial analyst intern for Lauren Templeton Capital Management, LLC and a technical assistant for a UTC computer lab. Simona is a member of Beta Gamma Sigma, the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, and has been on the Dean’s List since 2007. She is also fluent in Italian and knows basic French and Spanish.


After graduation, Simona hopes to become a financial analyst because she wants to be able to think globally and understand how the different markets and events in the world are interconnected.



Graduate Students

David_Moore David Moore

David is a Master of Business Administration student from Chattanooga, TN.

David currently helps professors with research papers and furthering their publications as a graduate assistant for the business department at UTC. David graduated from UTC as one of the first students with a Construction Management degree. He is an Academic All-American in cross-country and track and field and won the Dayle May Award, graduating as an athlete with the highest GPA. David is also an active participant with registration and organization of cross-country and road races in the Chattanooga area.

After graduation, David plans to continue on to a Ph.D. program in management science, finance, or operations management. Eventually he hopes to work as a professor at an accredited University in the United States.