Students finish in top 100 in global contest

Dec. 30, 2017 at 10:30 p.m.

Jifu Wang

Jifu Wang   Contributed Photo for The Victoria Advocate

Four University of Houston-Victoria graduate students made school history this semester while participating in a Global Business Simulation competition that is part of the Global Master of Business Administration program.

The winning team, Active Jag Cameras, consisted of students Devon Dueser and Frank Hillyard, both of Victoria; Jennifer Sharpe, of Chesterfield, Va; and Vanessa Rivera, of Cypress.

The team developed competitive strategies for a simulated action-capture cameras company in a global simulation of the worldwide economy. The team placed in the top 100 during three out of seven total weeks of the competition. The last time UHV students placed three times in the top 100 was in 2014. This year, the students competed against 2,762 teams from 142 colleges and universities worldwide. The Active Jag Cameras placed 59th with a score of 107.5 out of 110 during the week beginning Oct. 23. The following week, they tied for 95th place with a score of 107. The team then scored 106.5 and placed 77th during the week beginning Nov. 20.

"It was the hard efforts of the students on this team that resulted in such high scores," said Jifu Wang, UHV professor and associate dean in the School of Business Administration. "The team did a great job working closely together, considering marketplace variables and recommending effective solutions for the future of the company."

Each year, students in the Global MBA program compete in the simulation as a part of their "International Business Strategy" course.

The capstone course is intended to prepare students for the workforce by incorporating a learn-by-doing simulation and giving them hands-on practice. In the simulation, students can apply what they learned in class to make business decisions and be held accountable for the results.

Students in the competition were required to determine priority decisions of the simulated business by considering variable factors related to the environment, market and competition, and referring to case studies learned throughout the course. Win or lose, students gained a better understanding of the core issues an international business may encounter while trying to gain a competitive advantage in the marketplace.

"Knowledge alone is only useful when the students use innovative and creative ways to apply them in real-life situations to get favorable results and meet a business's needs," Wang said.

Students from the winning team will receive certificates to commemorate their achievement. In addition, the students will be invited to the school's Distinguished Speaker Series in the spring semester where a prominent keynote speaker will cover a topic related to global business.

"Ultimately, this competition demonstrates the core competency training and quality of education these students receive through the University's Global MBA program," Wang said. "Our students can take quality skills and hands-on experience learned through their education at UHV into the workforce to prepare them for job success and career advancement."


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