On March 31 and April 1, a group of Northern State University students competed in a student case study competition in Portland, Oregon, sponsored by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).
The NSU team, competing in the undergraduate level, consisted of Joellen Miller, Zachary Ulmer, Nick Murphy, and Alexander Gray. The students worked hard and placed second in Division I, beating out some well- known universities.
The team was led by NSU faculty member Dr. Kristi Bockorny, Instructor of Management, who stated: “I thought it was a great competition. The students did outstanding!” She went on to comment: “I think the competition gave the students a great experience at presenting and networking opportunities. I am hopeful to continue our participation in this competition in the future.”
Bockorny found out about the case competition on the SHRM website, where she was researching student case competitions. This particular competition popped up and seemed like a good opportunity.
. . . the competition gave the students a great experience at presenting and networking opportunities.
– Dr. Kristi Bockorny, NSU Instructor of Management
The students who had the opportunity to present were chosen through a selection process. The four students were selected based on a few different academic qualifications. For instance, all four students had completed the Human Resource Management class, earned a determined grade in the course, and showed strengths in writing, presentation skills, and positive group interactions in various business courses.
The students put in a lot of preparation during the weeks prior the competition. The team met a couple of times a week for about four to six weeks leading up to the competition.
The team received their case on March 10. They had five days to analyze the case, research the case, determine their course of action, write a two-page executive summary, and prepare a 15-minute presentation. This is done completely by the students with no help from the advisor or any other faculty member.
As a whole, the competition consisted of 20 teams across the entire undergraduate level. Each team had the opportunity to present their case to a panel of four judges. The presentation lasted for 15 minutes, with an additional 15 minutes for questions from the judges.
During the opening session on April 1, the top two teams making the finals were announced, with the team from Northern State University being one of those teams.
For the final round, a coin flip determined the NSU team would go first, with the University of Central Oklahoma team going second. Both teams presented in front of all those present at the conference, following the 15-minute presentation/15-minute question and answer format.
The Northern State team took second place in the competition. In expressing how proud she was of the team’s performance at the competition, Bockorny commented that “they were professional, out-going, and took advantage of the amazing opportunity that was in front of them. These four students are phenomenal, and I know they will accomplish anything they put their mind to in life. It was an honor and privilege to accompany these students at SHRM.”
Photo courtesy NSU School of Business.