It’s hard to believe that the 4 weeks of the 2013 Summer Business Program have already come and gone! It seems like just yesterday that the group was gathering for their first session, most of them not knowing one another, anxiously awaiting to see what exactly they’d gotten themselves into when they applied for this program…
Last Friday, during the final presentations of the team projects, none of that anxiety was present (or, at least, they did a good job hiding it!) and all of the teams impressed the judges with their presentations!
But, first, to rewind…
The first three days of Week 4 of SBP were focused on more technical skills. Spearheaded by several GE employees the SBP students spent Monday afternoon learning about personal branding, Tuesday focusing on Excel and Wednesday exploring PowerPoint. It was great to have the opportunity for the students to hear from some recent alum, many of whom are in the GE rotational program, and get a day of intensive training with these various programs. Coming out of the Excel day many of the students were indicating they definitely wanted to take the fall Excel workshop – while they learned a lot in one day, it was clear there was so much more to explore and all the alum from GE emphasized how important it is to be able to use Excel if you’re interested in a career in business!
The students had Thursday to work as teams, putting the finishing touches on their projects, and then Friday was game time. Every team had a slightly different project, based on their team exec’s assignment, but the common denominator was that they were all very impressive standing in front of the room. In spite of having to present in front of all their classmates – something that some of the students weren’t thrilled about – watching the presentations it was clear how much time and effort all the groups had poured into their projects. Team Schiffmann put together a marketing pitch for a new wall siding product that’s ideal for DIY home owners. Team Malley presented a pitch to secure funding for a new drug that the group thinks can cure Crohn’s disease. Team Correia came up with a new brand of Irish-American whiskey and Team Villa created a pitch to secure funding for their bicycle company. Lastly, Team Brennan – which ultimately ended up winning – pitched a business plan for a new app that would help facilitate students’ study abroad experiences and allow for parents to more easily track and communicate with their children.
All five were very impressive! But, at the end of the day, the judges felt that Team Brennan was the best developed and the best presented so they walked away with the prize.
I think I speak for all the alum who participated in SBP when I say that this year’s group of students really took advantage of the Summer Business Program and it will be exciting to see where their interest in business takes them in the future! Who knows, perhaps in a few years some of them will be back on campus teaching a session rather than sitting in the audience.
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Helene Horan ’06
Associate Director, Entrepreneurial Studies