MBA Competition Provides Unique Experience For Students

Five Kent State University MBA students participated in the 2014 John Molson MBA International Case Competition in Montreal, Canada.

Adele El Helou, marketing and fashion merchandising concentration; Tan Kiran, finance and international business concentration; Weihua Peng, international business concentration; James Wright, finance concentration; Jyoti Sharma; marketing concentration and Robert Coleman, team coach, made up the Kent State University team.

“It’s very rewarding to watch the level of skill and the level of presentation of these students,” Coleman said. “They are in a different place at competition time then they were in the beginning of the semester; it’s really something to see.”

The Kent State team competed against 36 other schools, including Yale School of Management; University of Notre Dame; HEC Montreal in Quebec, Canada; Concordia University, John Molson School of Business in Quebec, Canada; Queensland University of Technology in Australia; Lund University in Sweden and more.

“We also observed the presentations by other universities; it was a wonderful experience,” said Peng, Kent State team member. “The competition provided us with opportunities to associate with students and judges, from all business fields across the globe.”

Coleman, who also coached the 2013 team, said it is an honor to be invited to the competition and said it’s an extremely worthwhile experience for students. The Kent State students participate as part of a three credit hour course taught by Associate Professor Mike Mayo, throughout the fall semester. This allows students to stay on-track for their degree while amassing resume worthy experience.

“This competition puts you up against some of the best MBA and executive MBA students from the best schools in the world,” said Wright, Kent State team member. “It really tests what you are capable of and challenges you to grow.”

Four second-year MBA students are recruited from the MBA program to participate as well as one first-year MBA student that serves as alternate for the team but will lead the group the following year. Sharma, served as the alternate for the team this year, and looks forward to next year’s competition.

Because only five spots are open on a team, students must apply and go through an interview process to be on the team.

“Students develop critical thinking and problem solving skills,” Coleman said. “They also learn about team building since they work side by side for the entire semester. It helps them to develop into a high-performance team.”

 “The Molson Case Study Competition is both an educational and enjoyable experience that offers the perfect blend of networking, professional development, competitiveness and friendships,” El Helou, team member said. “I definitely recommend participation. The investment is relatively low given the high rewards and clear educational benefits. It’s a wonderful experience.”

Michael Mayo, Ph.D., associate professor of marketing and director of the Global Management Center, said students, through the case competition, receive many benefits including honing their decision making skills, while polishing their professional communications and presentation abilities.

“This is a once in a lifetime opportunity,” Mayo said. “It’s something only five people in the College of Business Administration get to do.”

POSTED: Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - 12:00am
UPDATED: Tuesday, August 9, 2016 - 8:33am