Category Archives: MBA

U of A Sweeps Graduate Places at Governor’s Cup Competition

April 20, 2016 – FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – University of Arkansas teams swept all three places Tuesday in the graduate division at the 2016 Donald W. Reynolds Governor’s Cup Collegiate Business Plan Competition.

Donald W. Reynolds Governor's Cup 2016 winners.
Photo by Beth Hall
From left: Cynthia Sides, David Zaharoff, Sean Smith, Drew McKinnon, Amy Hardwick, MJ Orellano, Carol Reeves, Corey Coston, Alan Ellstrand, Senior Associate Dean Anne O¹Leary-Kelly, and interim Dean Matt Waller.

VivImmune, a start-up biotechnology company that specializes in immunotherapy for bladder cancer, finished in first place and won $25,000. The company also won the AT&T Elevator Pitch Contest for $2,000 and the Delta Plastics Innovation Award for $5,000.

Actio Systems, which developed a patient reminder and intelligent rescheduling smartphone app for medical clinics and their patients, placed second and took home $15,000.

Third place and $10,000 went to deciLvl, a company using metamaterial research out of MIT to filter out harmful audio signals in noisy environments.

Read the full article in Newswire.

Walton MBA Team Competes in SEC MBA Case Competition

A team of four M.B.A. students from the Sam M. Walton College Business competed in the 4th Southeastern Conference MBA Case Competition held April 7-9, 2016, on the University of Arkansas campus.

Walton SEC MBA 2016
MBA students (l-r) Haley Cleous, Phil Keil, Ash Ganapathiraju and Clinton Rhodes represented the Sam M. Walton College of Business during the 4th Southeastern Conference MBA Case Competition held April 7-9, 2016, at the University of Arkansas. [photo credit: Jim Bailey]
The Walton team of Haley Cleous, Phil Keil, Ash Ganapathiraju and Clinton Rhodes had 24 hours to create a business plan to a case presented by Henkel Corp., a multinational company that produces consumer and industrial products and whose executives served as judges of the competition.

All 14 SEC universities participated in the event with the University of Alabama bringing home the top prize. The University of Florida placed second, Texas A&M University third and Mississippi State University fourth.

“I was impressed by the caliber of the students who represented the University of Arkansas and the SEC,” said Matthew A. Waller, interim dean of the Walton College. “All of the M.B.A. teams presented quality solutions to a leading international company’s business challenge. Each member of the 14 teams reflects the outstanding business sophistication and talent we have in the SEC.”

Other awards given during the divisional rounds included Best Presenter and Best Q&A.

SEC MBA 2016
MBA teams representing 14 SEC universities were on hand April 7-9, 2016, to compete in the 4th SEC MBA Case Competition. The Walton College at the University of Arkansas served as host for the event. [photo credit: Stacy Allred]
Sarah Gardener from Louisiana State University, Katie Lamberth from the University of Alabama, Lillian Niakan from Texas A&M University and Kate O’Hara from the University of Florida were named Best Presenters for their divisions.

The Best Q&A Awards were earned by Abhinav Bhattacharya from the University of Alabama, Sarah Crook from the University of Tennessee, Kendall Daniel from Texas A&M University and Carew Ferguson from Mississippi State University.

This marks the fourth year for the SEC MBA Case Competition, which provides an opportunity for SEC business schools to showcase their students’ skills at solving simulated, real-world problems that cover the spectrum of business disciplines. The 2017 SEC MBA Case Competition will be held at the University of Florida in Gainesville.

A complete list of winners from the 2016 competition is available at www.thesecu.com.

About SECU
The Southeastern Conference sponsors, supports and promotes collaborative higher education programs and activities involving administrators, faculty and students at its fourteen member universities. The goals of the SECU academic initiative include highlighting the endeavors and achievements of SEC faculty and universities; advancing the merit and reputation of SEC universities outside of the traditional SEC region; identifying and preparing future leaders for high-level service in academia; increasing the amount and type of education abroad opportunities available to SEC students; and providing opportunities for collaboration among SEC university personnel. To connect with SECU online – www.TheSECU.com; on Facebook – TheSECU; on Twitter – @TheSECU; on Instagram – @TheSECUniversity; and on YouTube – SECUniversity.

Walton College to Host 4th SEC MBA Case Competition

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The Sam M. Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas will host the 4th Southeastern Conference MBA Case Competition April 7-9, 2016, with 14 SEC universities participating.

Teams of four graduate students will present a business plan regarding a real problem faced by Henkel Corporation, which will also provide executives to serve as judges. Within a specific time restriction, the teams will analyze the problem, develop a solution and present their findings.

SEC University

“Walton College is proud to host this premier competition,” said Marion Dunagan, Walton College assistant dean, Graduate Programs. “The business plan competition highlights the outstanding talent we have in the Southeastern Conference and our significant contributions to the business world locally, nationally and globally.”

Competing teams will represent graduate business colleges from the University of Alabama, University of Arkansas, Auburn University, University of Florida, University of Georgia, University of Kentucky, Louisiana State University, University of Mississippi, Mississippi State University, University of Missouri, University of South Carolina, University of Tennessee, Texas A&M University and Vanderbilt University.

The University of Florida took first place in the 2015 SEC MBA Case Competition held at the Darla Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina.

Henkel, headquartered in Düsseldorf, Germany, is known for brands such as Persil, Schwarzkopf and Loctite. Henkel North America produces brands such as Dial soaps, Purex laundry detergents, Right Guard deodorants, göt2b hair styling products and Loctite adhesives.

About the University of Arkansas: The University of Arkansas provides an internationally competitive education for undergraduate and graduate students in more than 200 academic programs. The university contributes new knowledge, economic development, basic and applied research, and creative activity while also providing service to academic and professional disciplines. The Carnegie Foundation classifies the University of Arkansas among only 2 percent of universities in America that have the highest level of research activity. U.S. News & World Report ranks the University of Arkansas among its top American public research universities. Founded in 1871, the University of Arkansas comprises 10 colleges and schools and maintains a low student-to-faculty ratio that promotes personal attention and close mentoring.

Walton MBA Program Offers New Certification with Nielsen

By Becca Trippe

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The Sam M. Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas is working with Nielsen, a global performance management company that provides a comprehensive understanding of what consumers watch and buy, to expand its professional development offerings to include a Nielsen Academy Certificate Program for Walton MBA students. Continue reading Walton MBA Program Offers New Certification with Nielsen

Walton MBA and Henkel Partner on Sustainability Course Project

IMG_1234 The M.B.A. program at the Sam M. Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas has joined with Henkel, the company behind well-known brands such as Dial soap, Purex laundry detergent and Loctite adhesive, to offer experiential learning opportunities for students.

The latest partnership revolved around Professor Vikas Anand’s spring-semester course Partnering Project. The course, which enrolls both M.B.A. and honors upper-level undergraduate students, provides the opportunity for academic application of sustainability to a manufacturing company’s real marketing goals.

IMG_1259The course concentrates on market research and consumer behavior analysis with regards to sustainability and on marketing plan development. The first is to determine sustainable products’ impact on shoppers’ habits and the second focuses on how to market to sustainable customers.

Henkel executives were involved in the course from the beginning of the semester, including initial presentations to students about the business challenge. They also served as mentors to student teams as they researched and developed business solutions and as judges as students competed to present insightful consumer research.

IMG_1266Last week, student teams engaged in a final round of friendly competition to present their research on consumer trends in sustainability. Using their findings, they made recommendations geared towards Henkel’s categories – Laundry & Home Care, Personal Care and Adhesives. Representatives from Henkel, Walmart, The Sustainability Consortium and the Walton faculty were on campus April 29 to judge the competition.

IMG_2620“Henkel has been a global leading innovator in developing sustainable products for many decades,” said Brent Horn, Henkel’s vice president of sales responsible for the global business development at Walmart. “Sustainability is one of our company’s five core values, and every new product is required to contribute positively to our sustainability strategy. Since 2007, we have gained invaluable consumer and product insights by partnering with the Walton College and The Sustainability Consortium at University of Arkansas. As a reult, we are launching new products that directly improve the sustainability metrics in our retail customers’ stores.”

The course united guest speakers from a range of businesses in the area that incorporate sustainable principles into their business strategies and that are familiar with consumer trends. Guest speakers included Rand Waddoups, senior director for Home & Office Electronics at Walmart; Angelo Welihindha, heaIMG_2627d of Hardware Sales at Google, Inc.; Julianne Brown, senior manager for Merchant Development at Walmart; Andrew Tucker, senior director for New Business Development at Nickelodeon; Soner Senlikci, vice president-Walmart at ShurTech Brands, LLC, and several others.

The application of the research students took on for this course could have far reaching applicability, as will the continuing partnership between Henkel and the Walton M.B.A. program to provide quality, hands-on project based learning experieIMG_2635nces for Walton College students as they prepare to enter the workforce.

Plans are for the course to be offered every spring. Contact Meredith McKee, assistant M.B.A. director, at mmckee@walton.uark.edu or 479-575-3480 for more information.

Walton MBA Students Compete at SEC Case Competition

Four students from the Sam M. Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas competed in the third Southeastern Conference M.B.A. Case Competition.

The competition was held April 9-11 at the University of South Carolina’s Darla Moore School of Business.

Student teams representing each of the 14 SEC universities competed to analyze case information about a mining company implementing a sustainable community development initiative in a small village in Zambia, Africa.

The Walton College team was made up of three second-year M.B.A. students, Kenny Bierman, Qinghai Sun and Kristen Raney, and one first-year M.B.A. student, Jenny Glover. The team’s faculty adviser was professor Vikas Anand. The team was edged out in the first division by University of Kentucky, which finished second overall in the competition.

Walton College will host the SEC MBA Case Competition in April 2016.

The SEC MBA Case Competition is one of the enterprises of SECU, the academic initiative of the Southeastern Conference. In 2013 the inaugural competition was held at the University of Missouri, and in 2014 the University of Alabama hosted the conference.

The 14 teams were divided into four divisions on Friday morning immediately after which the case was released. The teams had 24 hours to develop strategies and presentations, submitting final presentations by 7 a.m. Saturday. Saturday morning began with divisional rounds, with Florida, Kentucky, Louisiana State University and South Carolina advancing to the finals. Only one team advances from each division.

In this year’s competition, Florida again took first place – repeating its wins from 2013 and 2014. LSU finished fourth overall and South Carolina finished in third.

Information about this year’s SEC MBA Case Competition, including the schedule, results from divisional and final competitions, photos, and recordings of the team presentations can be found on the website of the Moore School of Business.

Contact the Graduate School of Business for more information on the 2016 competition at the University of Arkansas, or Bryan Welbourne, assistant director of SECU, at BWelbourne@sec.org or 205-949-8960 for more information about SECU.