Goal: Best learning experience for students

"I have one passion: teaching. My personal mission is to help students develop the skills and acquire the knowledge to achieve their personal and professional goals. College is about producing meaningful change.

My scholarly work is mostly about how to create the best possible learning experience for students: What are the best ways to help students engage with and learn the important concepts? I incorporate a lot of activities and students do a lot of talking and sharing with me and each other. Lecture is still important, but it is kept to a minimum. I use a lot of technology in the classroom and students enjoy that.

My teaching philosophy is very simple. My role is to inspire and guide. I make sure the student knows why the topic is important and how it has the ability to contribute to your personal and professional growth. I also believe that learning should be fun and challenging. When students choose to take my class, they're in for a fun, challenging and interactive experience.

I started teaching at Naz in 1983, after working for C. H. Stuart and Parker Hannifan. I spent much of my business career in the areas of customer relations, pricing strategy, and marketing research. At Nazareth, I served as dean of the school for 11 years before returning to full-time teaching."

Favorite course to teach

"I love teaching Entrepreneurship. Students gain more control over their economic future by developing the ability to create opportunities in the marketplace for themselves and others.

I also teach applied research methods, marketing strategy, consumer behavior and advanced management."

Why I Teach at Nazareth

"Nazareth's School of Business and Leadership is a great place for students who want a good blend of the theoretical and practical side of business. Most SBL faculty have significant business experience and a lot of business connections.

I admire that most of the SBL students want to be challenged. Most are willing to step out of their comfort zones to achieve personal and professional growth."

Stay relevant and current

"I simulate the work environment and show how course topics are relevant to business decision-making through computer simulations and case studies. I also bring in executives who discuss how classroom learning applies to their daily life."

Learning is a lifelong process

"I am an innovator in the classroom. I am never satisfied and constantly find ways to improve my teaching. I integrate technology into my teaching in careful and thoughtful ways to improve student learning."

Technology is a universal language

"Students with a serious interest in marketing and entrepreneurship should learn as much technology as possible. Technology transcends every business discipline. In addition, develop strong oral and written communication skills. Communication skills are key to advancement and long-term success. They provide you with a clear competitive advantage in the workplace."

Business is about building relationships

"Internships are key to professional development. Also, three important pieces of advice: network, network, network. Build as many relationships as you can and do it in a way that provides mutual benefit."

Jerry Zappia with Naz students

Why I teach

"I find joy in interacting with students and helping them work through the challenges of college life and gain the confidence to pursue a meaningful career. "