MBA Program: Students Compete in Case Competition and Online Program Earns College Choice Accolades
This April, a group of four MBA students traveled to the Sam Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas to compete in the 2016 SEC MBA Case Competition. The team consisted of Caroline Rohde-Moe, Ben Tedford, Colin Wattigney, and Lucas Harth. They were led by Faculty Advisor Dr. Walter Davis and accompanied by MBA Director Ashley Jones.
To be nominated for the team, students must have excellent faculty recommendations and an exemplary performance in the Speaker’s Edge competition. Lucas Harth said, “It was truly an honor to be selected as a representative for the University of Mississippi. I am grateful for the opportunity to compete against top candidates of the SEC universities and for the case competition experience. I would like to thank my teammates for their hard work and dedication, and Ms. Jones and Dr. Davis for their coaching and guidance. Even though we did not bring home the trophy, the real prize was the experience.”
“The School of Business and the MBA program is incredibly proud of this year’s team. Caroline, Lucas, Colin, and Ben delivered a high caliber presentation. Their talent and performance puts us on the same playing field with the SEC’s best,” said Jones.
The University of Mississippi’s MBA students have been participating in the competition since the event launched in 2013. The annual event emerged when SEC officials aspired to develop an academic competition that stirs the same excitement as athletic competitions of the SEC. The event offers opportunities to make connections with MBA students from around the SEC, as well as with the companies that partner in the event.
The event was an opportunity to represent the best of the University of Mississippi’s MBA program on a regional stage. Colin Wattigney said, “My team and I worked hard to compete against MBA students across 13 other universities in the SEC, and we held our own against the best of them. The competition was a great and valuable experience that I’m happy to have shared with my team.”
The competition involves developing a strategic business plan for a company in 24 hours. The catch is, the team is only given the name of the company and limited information about the case prior to the event. They are given the specific details of the case when they arrive, and they must immediately begin to craft their plan, which will be presented to a panel of judges at the end of their allotted time.
Caroline Rohde-Moe enjoyed the challenge of the competition, saying, “Getting to be a part of the SEC Case Competition was a great opportunity to get real life experience and act as a consultant for 24 hours to help a company with a strategic issue. I really enjoyed it!”
Fellow team member Ben Tedford saw the competition as an opportunity to try their knowledge against their peers. He said, “Imagine a company sharing an issue with you and expecting you to propose a workable solution in 24 hours. That’s the SEC Case Competition. It was a great opportunity to test what we have learned in our program against other schools.”
Faculty advisor Dr. Walter Davis explained that, while the competition may only go on for 24 hours, the team put a semester’s worth of work into preparing for it. He expressed his pride in the team, saying, “It’s been an honor to work with our case competition team throughout the semester. Their dedication was contagious, and they represented the Ole Miss spirit with tremendous enthusiasm.”
And while the campus-based MBA program has represented the university in the SEC-wide challenge, the online MBA program has recently been named the top in the nation by College Choice, judged on academic reputation, value, career success for graduates and overall cost.