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Undergrads Take Top Prize in National Case Competition

November 15, 2010
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BYU WinnersA team of undergraduate students from the School of Business has won first place in a national case competition.  The team beat out teams from 11 other business schools to win the BYU Business Language Case Competition held at Brigham Young University on November 12.  The winning team included Nikolay Nedyalkov, Daniel Lopes, and Justyna Milewski who had to showcase both their business skills and their mastery of a foreign language.  Students from each school were presented with a hypothetical business problem and had to research, come up with, and present their solution, all in Spanish.

Teams were given their cases two weeks before the competition in order to prepare their solutions which were presented to three different panels of judges on the day of the competition.  Following the presentations, the groups participated in a 10-minute question and session about their solution, also in Spanish.  At the end of the first two rounds, the UM School of business team had advanced to the finals.  Team member Justyna Milewski said the team was helped in the final round by the advice members had received during the previous two rounds.

“In the final, we saw the presentations of two of our other competitors and found out what we were up against. Up to that point it had been a complete mystery,” said Milewski. “Going into the final, we decided to implement all of the suggestions that we had received from the judges of the previous rounds in order to strengthen our style of presenting and our Q&A skills.”

The UM students feel the competition was beneficial as much for mastering presentations in Spanish as it was for being able to develop a real world business solution.

“During the competition, there was no wiggle room,” said Milewski. “I had to speak Spanish and I had to communicate some tough business-related concepts and vocabulary. I didn't have time to translate my thoughts, I simply had to speak, and the pressure was just what I needed to gain confidence in the language.”

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