GWU Grad Student Develops Plan to Help her Husband Expand His Business

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Joy Greene ’18 Applies Class Assignment to Real Life

Joy Greene ’18 entered the Godbold School of Business at Gardner-Webb University because she wanted a career change. She hadn’t expected one of her classes to also benefit her husband’s business. The assignment in Dr. Felice Policastro’s Entrepreneurial Management class was to develop a business plan. “My husband, Bryan, was already pursuing a food trailer for his restaurant, The Shak, in Forest City, N.C.,” Greene related. “I knew the food trailer was my perfect opportunity to explore my husband’s businesses and take a deeper look into the financing and long-term goals of the food trailer and the other restaurants.”

Greene and business partner, George Rizkallah, co-own the business and also run Shelby (N.C.) Café and Lincoln Café in Lincolnton, N.C. The business plan helped her husband understand how to balance expenses and explore menu options to appeal to the millennial generation. They purchased a trailer and have been pleased with the response. The menu includes barbecue pork and chicken, brisket, wings, beans, fried okra, French fries, onion rings, and white or red slaw. “The public has been very receptive to our barbecue and brisket,” Greene stated. “We get so many comments that no one can cook brisket, but ours is perfect. We’ve also seen an increase in customers who tried our food at various events and decided to try the full menu (at the restaurant).”

Bryan Greene works in The Shak food trailer.

Greene had been thinking about obtaining her Master of Business Administration (MBA) for several years. She attended GWU as a freshman, but transferred to another college to finish her degree. When she heard that GWU’s online MBA program was ranked ninth in the world, she decided it was time to pursue her dream. “I’ve always been interested in human resources and the laws associated with it,” she explained. “In my current job, I manage five associates and work closely with my company’s human resources department when needed. I have had Dr. Mickey Metcalf for all of my HR courses and his class structures have really helped me to learn about HR and the processes and laws surrounding this field.”

Although the GWU classes are online, Greene still feels a sense of community. “The professors have been great to answer any questions I have and help when needed,” she affirmed. “I love the Christian values that each professor has held and the fostering of a great learning experience. Dr. Policastro has been such a wonderful professor and attentive to any issues or questions I may have had in his courses. Also, he came out to the Cleveland County Fair (Shelby), stopped by the food trailer, introduced himself, and spoke with my husband and me about his success.”