Cool of the Evening

U-Mary Professor Uses Cool of the Evening to Teach Human Resources Students

For Immediate Release
Wednesday, October 3, 2007

BISMARCK, N.D. - As he read the baseball book Cool of the Evening: The 1965 Minnesota Twins, University of Mary Associate Professor Henry Roehrich noticed that the Twins faced familiar human resources challenges as they chased the '65 American League pennant.  

Dr. Roehrich incorporated the obstacles faced by the 1965 Minnesota Twins into his human resources management class after deciding the old baseball story held interesting parallels to modern human resources issues.

"A baseball manager is a human resources manager, after all," Roehrich says.

Among manager Sam Mele's challenges depicted in the book were cultural differences, a surplus of qualified personnel, and personal conflicts - the latter having been plentiful with volatile Billy Martin among the team's coaches.

Regarding employing a baseball book as class text, Roehrich says, "I believe it's important to use a combination of teaching strategies to create a collaborative learning environment and develop a sense of community. Students journal their thoughts on each chapter as it helps them become familiar with how human resources management affects an organization,"

Minnesota author Jim Thielman says the 20 team members he interviewed for the book would be happy to know about their impact on leadership students.

"These were bright men who drove over plenty of speed bumps on their way to successful careers in baseball, and later in business," Thielman says. "I know they would be delighted to learn that Dr. Roehrich is using their experiences to teach a generation of students who are young enough to be their grandkids."

An Iowa native, Dr. Roehrich designs his curriculum to include real-life stories, tasks and challenges. He also has 20 years of retail management experience to incorporate.

For more information or interviews with Dr. Roehrich or Thielman, media are to contact Tom Ackerman at (701) 355-8002, or (701) 471-5698.

Cool of the Evening