Defying expectations

People always tell you what not to do. Find out what you can do at IUPUI.

In the business of engaging with students

Description of the following video:

[Video: Classroom setting with student and professor interaction.]

[Announcer speaks: Don't ask questions.]

[Student speaks Professor Mohan? How do we help startups succeed?]

[Mohan Tatikonda speaks: So for startup companies the objective is-]

[Words appear: IUPUI Presents]

[Mohan Tatikonda speaks: It was a very novel experience for me. I've done media interviews, television interviews, and so forth. But I've never been in a crew production setting with makeup and multiple crew and extras and takes and takes and takes, it was fascinating.]

[Words appear: Mohan Tatikonda, Professor of operations management]

[Video: Mohan walks around a classroom professing.]

[Mohan speaks: When I teach, I teach in a very interactive way. I really personally try to bring a lot of energy. It's fun for me because I get feedback and energy from the students. I very rarely use a PowerPoint. It's been remarked that some students have told me I don't see too many professors anymore that go a whole semester without PowerPoint.

And that's just part of my teaching style. And I was asked for the mock classroom to pull up one of my PowerPoints, which I thought, I really don't actually have any.]

[Video: More classroom footage]

[Mohan speaks: And also, yes-]

[Mohan speaks: I teach primarily in the Business of Medicine MBA program, which is a very unique graduate program for physicians.

It's the only one like it in the country. And so, we're very proud that Indiana University and the Kelley School hosts this program.]

[Words appear: IUPUI Fulfilling the Promise, iupui.edu]

[End of transcript]

When professor of operations management Mohan Tatikonda was tapped to be in IUPUI's latest television commercial, he wasn't sure what to expect. The Indiana University Kelley School of Business educator was surprised with makeup and many, many takes.

What the production team was sure of was that Tatikonda would have lesson-based PowerPoint presentations to fire up in order to help make a mock classroom in the Campus Center appear more authentic. But Tatikonda had no such files. The young professor forgoes slides; he prefers walking among his students and engaging them in a discussion-friendly setting.

"I teach in a very interactive way. I try to personally bring a lot of energy," Tatikonda said. "It's fun for me because I get feedback and energy from the students."

With a career spent helping hospitals and medical professionals work more efficiently, he called up some conference notes and led a room full of extras and random IUPUI students in a free business class session throughout that August afternoon. With each take, he moved on to a new part of his lecture.

Tatikonda's unique field, which has been a crucial part of Kelley and the IU School of Medicine, helped him get cast for the commercial, which will air throughout the Winter Olympics. Thousands of new viewers will see Tatikonda and his fellow IUPUI Jaguars on WTHR-TV.

This semester, Tatikonda is leading dozens of medical professionals to an MBA degree. His classes focus on health care revenue, delivery models and improvement.

"We know we can always serve more patients more quickly," Tatikonda said, "sometimes in friendlier ways and with better health outcomes."

Tatikonda admitted to almost turning down the opportunity to be on-camera for the commercial. Now he is happy he went through with it and happy to help promote IUPUI to a large audience.

"It's just really well-done," Tatikonda said. "It shows how cutting-edge some aspects of IUPUI are. The commercial really highlights research activity and technology that is not just advanced but pushing the international boundaries.

"This is a world-class institution doing things that are important."