Professor Spotlight: Bryan McLeod


Photo by: Kei'yona Jordon

Bryan McLeod creates new opportunities with new class.

Assistant Professor of Marketing Bryan McLeod’s passion for marketing pushed him to create courses that teach students about the more modern methods of marketing.

“Marketing is not just for businesses,” McLeod said.

As part of a group effort from the marketing department, McLeod has designed a course that will include social media marketing, mobile marketing and email marketing.

“That’s the route everything is headed now,” McLeod said. “Everything is online now.”

If the course is approved, he will be teaching this course starting in the fall of 2021.

McLeod and the marketing department hope to soon have a track solely for digital marketing. To get the ball rolling, McLeod has also transformed the foundation of one class to cover more information.

Instead of the marketing communication course covering mainly advertising and promotion, McLeod has revamped it so that it covers more digital aspects.

McLeod’s journey to become a marketing professor was everything but a traditional route. Joining the navy in 1996, McLeod served his country for eight years. McLeod may have been honorably discharged from the United States Navy, but he hasn’t stopped serving since.

Being in the navy gave McLeod an opportunity to travel the world, learning about different cultures and ways of life. He traveled to Ecuador, Chile, Peru, Brazil, Panama, Venezuela and other South American countries.

Traveling to all those different places helped him to be able to connect with all his students and coworkers. McLeod said that helping people was his main goal.

“It’s what I really wanted to do,” McLeod said. “I wanted to help people.”

After leaving the navy in 2004, McLeod earned his law degree at Southern Illinois University and shortly afterward opened a non-profit law office to help defend people who couldn’t afford lawyers.

Being the passionate person he is, McLeod had trouble leaving his work at work. He cared deeply about the things his clients were going through and he realized that he wanted to try helping in a different way.

While practicing law, McLeod was still taking classes to get his MBA. During that time, McLeod lost a case that weighed heavily on his conscience and was a major reason he decided to leave that field.

McLeod said he had never thought about becoming a marketing professor until one of his professors suggested that he get his Ph.D in marketing.

“I always figured I would get my Ph.D in political science or something,” McLeod said.

McLeod said he was still studying to get his Ph.D when he started teaching his first marketing class.

“They needed someone to fill in for a class and I kind of got thrown into it and from that moment I was hooked,” McLeod said. “I loved it.”

McLeod was hired by FMU during the time of the thousand-year flood and said he was captivated by how welcoming the faculty and staff was.

During the time he had been teaching at FMU in October 2016, he suffered a life-threatening health issue.

“I was really sick and I was put in McLeod Hospital for about a month,” McLeod said.

While McLeod was sick, he said he was amazed at how much his coworkers and people at the school helped him.

“They are the main reasons I came to FMU,” McLeod said.

McLeod is the faculty advisor for the American Marketing Association, an organization that shows marketing students and any interested students about the field of marketing.

Before the pandemic, McLeod said the marketing association invited guest speakers and got the students to do cool projects. McLeod hopes to be able to continue helping people and inspiring students through marketing.