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The Basics - Some FAQs?

The Basics - Some FAQs?


Business Competitions at Zicklin

The Zicklin School of Business actively supports and STRONGLY encourages all its MBA and MS students as well as its undergraduates to enter and compete in business competitions.

You may ask, “Why should I enter these events?” This part of the site gives you some of the answers.

What Are Business Competitions?

In the early 1980s, two Texas MBA students, sought a business school activity as challenging and prestigious as “moot court” in law school. They envisioned an entrepreneurial competition in which business students working in teams would conceive an idea for a new business or solve a business problem, develop the idea or solution into a written business plan, and present the results in a competitive environment either intra-murally or against another school. The concept included judging by a panel that might consist of entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, accountants or lawyers.

Since the 1980s the number of new venture and other competitions in the United States has grown exponentially and Baruch has joined the many schools that promote these activities. For example, for the past eleven years the Zicklin school of business has held in a widely-respected entrepreneurial competition at the Field Center for Entrepreneurship at Baruch.

There are many types of competitions besides entrepreneurial competitions. Some competitions specialize in what are called “elevator speeches" in which students compete to present a two to three minute synopsis of their new business plans. See a sample from a Baruch winning team. Elevator pitch. Other competitions have Baruch students competing to solve a long-standing business problem which is addressed through a comprehensive study of potential solutions over the course of a semester. Still others focus on accounting, marketing, or “going green”. These competitions can be at Baruch College or at other universities.

Why Compete When You Have So Many Other Items On Your Plate?

Many of our students are working, some have family obligations, some do volunteer work, and some are doing all of the above. With so many responsibilities it is sometimes difficult to conceive of taking on additional roles. Yet we believe that a student’s co-curricular life complements his/her formal education.

Competitions are all about learning hands-on business skills in a competitive environment, integrating those skills in a real world type setting and standing out from the crowd. In business school we learn the building blocks and techniques to successfully enter the business world. Frequently, however, there is not an opportunity to integrate your skill sets learned in a variety of courses in solving a real world problem or exercise, in presenting your solutions to a panel of experts and perhaps taking home some cash if you have the best solutions and presentation skills. Business competitions allow you to do all these things and more.

Through participation in competitions students increase their networking skills, acquire resources to enhance their academic experiences and prepare for meaningful careers. Competitions improve teamwork abilities, leadership, upgrade presentation skills and help students define their career goals through doing. Competition participants get a taste of the real world of business and add another dimension to the academic experience and coursework they receive while at business school.

And, competition experience looks very cool on a resume !

What Your Peers Are Saying About Their Competition Experiences:

  • Rory Christian, Class of 2008, said, “The structure of the project (the Executive Leadership Council Competition,) is exactly what Baruch had prepared us for…Case studies such as the ELC’s are based on a looking at a business from multiple perspectives, not just through the lenses of a specific subject...”
  • Jessica Salvatore, a member of ONE – the Baruch graduate team that won 2nd place in the Microsoft Digital Marketing Challenge recalls : “The ( competition) has certainly been one of the greatest experiences I had while pursuing my MBA at Baruch. It was hard to compete with so many students from all over US but the benefit and opportunity we had were a lot. The competition challenged my creativity, and enhanced not only my technical skills but my communication skills, team working skills, time management skills, writing skills and much more. These are the things I always dreamed to learn and be mine while pursuing my career path. The competition complemented the classroom learning experience and gave me a crucial inside perspective of the real business world. And last but not least we really had a lot of fun!”
  • Iwona Rozalewicz remarks that, “The Microsoft competition was the greatest experience ever!!! Hard work that was very rewarding at the end. It was the best way to meet a lot of people and successfully network with great dose of fun!”

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