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Team finishes global business simulation with third week in top 100

University of Houston-Victoria business graduate students have made school history this semester while participating in the Business Strategy Game competition.

Farhang Niroomand

Justin Adler-Swanberg of Las Vegas; Darrell Brightmon, Houston; Jon Bujan, Austin; and Rebecca Windle, Jacksonville, Fla.; were tasked with managing Geryon, a simulated athletic shoe company in a global simulation of the worldwide economy. For the last three weeks of the competition, the team has placed in the top 100.

“This accomplishment reflects the capability of our students who are participating in the global competition,” said Farhang Niroomand, dean of the UHV School of Business Administration. “We’re looking at building confidence to take action instead of just studying the textbook. I applaud these students and all of the faculty members who had a hand in their training at UHV.”

The students tied for 71st place for the week beginning Oct. 20 with a score of 108.5 out of 110. After that week, Adler-Swanberg left the team, but even though the team was a person short, that didn’t hurt its efforts. The next week, the students received a score of 109.5, which tied them for 21st place. Then, for the week beginning Nov. 10, they tied for 48th with a score of 109. Each week, the students faced anywhere from 4,500 to more than 5,000 teams from universities around the globe.

Jifu Wang

“That’s really rare in the simulation to have three wins in a row,” said Jifu Wang, associate professor in the UHV School of Business Administration. “There might be one or two wins during the competition, but it’s uncommon to see a team do this well. They put a lot of energy and time into this competition. They really did a nice job.”

Another UHV team managed by David Dao of Corinth; Catalina Otalora, Katy; Catherine Rugano, Conroe; and Andie Scott, Missouri City also placed in the top 100 during the semester’s competition. That team, known as Asphalt Kix, took 18th during the week beginning Sept. 29.

The students are competing in the simulation as part of their graduate-level “International Business Strategy” course, the capstone course of the Global Master of Business Administration program.

Jeffrey Cass

“This capstone course is all about applying the skills and knowledge from their other courses and putting them into practice,” Wang said. “They have to integrate these tools to be able to look at what other teams are doing and plan their own actions accordingly. It’s just like real life. A company needs to know what its competitors are doing in order to react and prosper.”

The students were invited to attend the School of Business Administration’s MBA Case Conference on Dec. 6, where they will receive special plaques to commemorate their achievement. In addition, they have received personal emails from Jeffrey Cass, UHV provost and vice president for academic affairs, congratulating them on their accomplishment.

“These students have been through the whole UHV School of Business Administration graduate program,” Cass said. “Now, they are showing that they are able to put together what they learned through each of their courses, and that reflects the quality of education offered at UHV.”

The University of Houston-Victoria, located in the heart of the Coastal Bend region since 1973, offers courses leading to 70 bachelor’s, master’s and specialist degree programs and concentrations in the schools of Arts & Sciences; Business Administration; and Education, Health Professions & Human Development. UHV provides face-to-face classes at its Victoria campus, as well as an instructional site in Katy, and online classes that students can take from anywhere. UHV supports the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Opportunities for All initiative to increase awareness about state colleges and universities and the important role they have in providing a high-quality and accessible education to an increasingly diverse student population, as well as contributing to regional and state economic development.