Dreams Made Real for Business Students
For the fifth consecutive year, the Clayton State University chapter for the Society for the Advancement of Management (SAM) has placed in the top two of the undergraduate division of the annual SAM Business Case Competition.
The latest installment in Clayton State’s domination of the competition for the James Rutherford Trophy (the undergraduate SAM division trophy) took place at Harrah’s Hotel, Las Vegas, on Mar. 29 as four College of Business students from Clayton State; Rachel Mannor, Chris Jeboda, Bilma Canseco and Mariama Diallo, placed second in the national competition. For Mannor and Jeboda, this was their second trip to the SAM competition. Along with the aforementioned travelling team, Michael Teachout-Bausin was the fifth student member, although he could not travel to Las Vegas.
The business case competition was structured around creating a business plan for 3D Systems, a Rock Hill, S.C. company that engineers and manufactures 3D printers and is credited with the invention of 3D printing.
Of course, no successful student organization succeeds in making its dreams real without a first-rate advisor, and Clayton State SAM once again benefitted from the expertise of Dr. Reza Kheirandish, who holds as many honors and titles as his students. In addition to being named SAM’s Outstanding Faculty Advisor for the second time, Kheirandish is also the Bud and Mary Miller University Professor, an associate professor of Economics, and the director of the Center for Research on Economic Sustainability and Trends at Clayton State.
“The team worked very hard during the past two months and developed financial and SWOT analysis and suggested recommendations for 3D Systems and the judges were impressed by our team’s performance,” says Kheirandish. “I am very proud of this team, especially because the difference between the first and the last teams is not very great.
“We have been consistently one of the high-performing teams in the national SAM case competition in the years that we have participated in this business case competition.”
The Rutherford Trophy and Kheirandish’s Outstanding Faculty Advisor Award were far from the only hardware brought back from Las Vegas by the Clayton State contingent.
The Clayton State SAM chapter also received the third place Campus Chapter Performance Program award for small SAM chapters, based on the chapter officers’ report of activity and a financial statement submitted to the SAM organization by the Clayton State chapter president, Mannor.
Already Clayton State’s Academic Recognition Day Representative, Mannor also received the Outstanding Student National Award at the SAM competition, an honor that goes to less than 15 SAM chapter student members nationwide.
In addition, Mannor, Jeboda, and Diallo also received Outstanding Student Regional Awards at the SAME competition.
“I would like to acknowledge the leadership of our previous faculty advisors, Drs. Deis and Arjomand,” concludes Kheirandish. “As the current faculty advisor I also want to thank my colleagues at the College of Business for encouraging their most talented students to participate in the SAM case competition team and their words of encouragement for me throughout the past few years.”