You are here: Home / News Release Archives / 2013 / March / Smeal Case Team Takes Third Place in International Competition

Smeal Case Team Takes Third Place in International Competition

Four Penn State Smeal College of Business students recently returned from the Marshall International Case Competition at the University of Southern California with a third-place trophy—the highest position of all participating American universities.
March 4, 2013

Four Penn State Smeal College of Business students recently returned from the Marshall International Case Competition at the University of Southern California with a third-place trophy—the highest position of all participating American universities.

The Smeal team, led by case team director Andy Gustafson, assistant professor of business administration, included Marketing major Devin Weakland, Actuarial Science and Economics major Benjamin Pugh, Accounting and Finance major Nicholas Fakelmann, and Supply Chain and Information Systems major Samantha Jarmul.

Thirty schools attended the competition. Each was allowed 24 hours to prepare a presentation in response to a case revolving around Owens & Minor, Inc.—a supply chain solutions provider of medical and surgical supplies.

“In essence, the students were charged with the following question: How do we extract the greatest value from our recent European acquisition?” said Gustafson. “The students had to create a business strategy, implementation plan, and financial return analysis in less than 24 hours.”

While all the business skills that contribute to developing this presentation make up about 50 percent of the judging, according to Gustafson, public speaking and presentation skills also count for much of a team’s final score.

Pugh said one of the reasons their team stood out was their clear presentation of ideas: “In any presentation, what’s really important is to make things easy to understand. It also helps if you can make a personal connection with the judges.”

Also important is their ability to think on their feet in the question and answer session with the judging panel—which included Owens & Minor CEO Craig Smith.

“Nick, Devin, Ben, and Samantha were not only great competitors, but also great ambassadors for Penn State,” said Gustafson.

Penn State took third place behind the University of British Columbia, which took top honors, and the Singapore Management University, which came in second.

Recent News
Penn State Smeal team finishes second in inaugural Smeal MBA Sustainability Case Competition 18 Dec Penn State Smeal team finishes second in inaugural Smeal MBA Sustainability Case Competition

A team of MBA students from the Penn State Smeal College of Business finished second in the inaugural Smeal MBA Sustainability Case Competition, which the college recently hosted in its Business Building on the Penn State University Park campus.

Rost Named Fall 2014 Smeal Student Marshal 15 Dec Rost Named Fall 2014 Smeal Student Marshal

The Penn State Smeal College of Business has named Daniel Rost as the student marshal for fall 2014.

Final Five Teams to Vie for $17,500 in Smeal MBA Sustainability Case Competition 01 Dec

Five teams of MBA students from programs in the U.S. will compete Dec. 5 for $17,500 in prize money in the inaugural Penn State Smeal College of Business MBA Sustainability Case Competition.

Businessweek ranks Smeal MBA Program No. 2 in ROI 17 Nov

The Penn State Smeal MBA Program ranks No. 2 in return on investment according to the latest Bloomberg Businessweek rankings.

Smeal Names Four New Members to Its Board of Visitors 31 Oct

The Penn State Smeal College of Business has named four new members to its Board of Visitors. Joining the board are Jon Grosso, ’89, executive vice president and director of stores for Kohl’s Department Stores; Ron Morgan, ’93, co-founder of MorganFranklin Consulting; Stephen Reeves, ’81, executive vice president and chief financial officer of Enviva Holdings; and Salomon “Sal” Sredni, ’87, chief executive officer of TradeStation Group, Inc.

More Recent News... More Recent News...