GWU School of Business Classes Provide Foundation for Alumna’s Human Resources Career

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Tamala DeVon Bullard ’03 Transitions to Role in Higher Education  

Tamala Devon Bullard, a 2003 alumna of Gardner-Webb University, began her business career in management but desired to apply her skills to human resources. “I have always had a passion for working with associates,” she reflected. “I knew all the policies and how things should run within the business, so the transition to human resources was smooth.”

Since earning her Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Human Resources, she’s worked in various corporate and manufacturing positions. Bullard was promoted to assistant human resources manager at Sara Lee Intimate Apparel in Statesville, N.C., and worked there until 2006. Then, she took a job in human resources at Newell Rubbermaid in Huntersville, N.C., where she worked nine years and received various promotions. She worked for Amazon in Spartanburg, S.C., for nearly two years.

Recently, she was named associate director of Human Resources at Davidson (N.C.) College. Her primary responsibilities include managerial training, employee relations and performance management. “Being strategic in the workplace is key to being successful,” Bullard stated. “The Gardner-Webb classes promoted my forward thinking, which has been essential in my growth in human resources.”

She chose to attend GWU for its convenience and flexibility. “I could complete cIasses at the locations in Statesville and Winston-Salem, N.C.,” she affirmed. “The option of online courses was an added benefit as well, because I was working full time with Sara Lee Intimate Apparel.”

Once she began her studies and met her professors, she appreciated the care and concern they gave students. “The professors made sure that we had a complete understanding of the syllabus and ensured that we balanced our time for assignments and exams,” Bullard explained. “They wanted us to succeed and made sure that we had all the necessary information and guidance as working graduate students.”

One of the most helpful activities was reviewing case studies. She developed problem-solving skills, and the principles she learned are still relevant today. “Each case study was about the future of the giant businesses at that time and the impact they would have on the future,” she described. “The class prompted us to think about the current companies we work for and if they will last in the next 10-15 years based on their mission, vision and changes in marketplace. The classes caused us to evaluate how we go to market and the changes in the consumer mindset.”

Bullard, a native of Laurinburg, N.C., received her undergraduate degree in business administration. She is certified in Human Resources, possessing credentials from The Human Capital Institute and The Society for Human Resource Management. Bullard is an active member of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority Inc., the National Coalition of 100 Black Women and Top Ladies of Distinction Inc.