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Undergraduate Business Students Take Top Honors at State Leadership Conference

March 30, 2011
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PBL winners

The University of Miami's Phi Beta Lambda (PBL), a business career student organization at the School of Business, took home seven awards at the annual State Leadership Conference competition, held this month in Tampa. The team, which included Max Wexler, Christopher Kelm, Christopher Morgan, and Alicia Barroso, competed against teams from the University of Florida, Florida State University, the University of Central Florida, the University of South Florida, Florida International University, Broward College, Miami Dade College, Palm Beach State College and Florida Atlantic University, among others. Close to 350 students competed in more than 50 categories winning awards as well as cash prizes. 

This was the first year that the School’s PBL chapter competed in the State Competition, an opportunity that came after the group dominated with 11 awards at the District Competition last month in Davie. Team members credit the School of Business’s academic rigor and faculty expertise for their achievements at the competition.

"We were all able to succeed because of the great undergraduate business core classes,” said Alicia Barroso, of her experience at the district event. “UM has amazing professors teaching these courses, and we truly realized that when we competed against other business students from local schools.”

Barroso was elected PBL state secretary in addition to the two awards she received.                    

All four students have qualified to compete in the PBL National Leadership Conference June 23-26 in Orlando.

“I am definitely looking forward to Nationals this summer,” said Barroso. “Our Chapter will be preparing through practice competitions to make sure we bring home trophies and award checks of up to $1,000 per competition.”

“We are very excited and looking forward to continuing our success,” agreed Max Wexler about the upcoming national competition.

“Our experiences in the School of Business proved invaluable in our success at the recent competition,” added Christopher Kelm of the district event.  “For every category one of us received an award in, a relevant course had been taken in the previous semester that had prepared us for the event.”

In addition to the competition, the State Leadership Conference offered students networking opportunities with fellow PBL members and employers. Students also had the chance to attend a business panel including firms such as Doug Ryan Consulting, INROADS, Nielson, and Deloitte, among others, where the discussion focused on leadership, future opportunities, internships, and other topics of interest to college students.

 “We’re extremely proud of these four students who represent our school and university so well in all that they do,” said Linda Neider, vice dean of Undergraduate Business Programs, of the wins at the District Competition. “Given their motivation, abilities, and exceptional breadth of knowledge, it is not surprising that they won top accolades at this leadership conference.  All of us look forward to the many ways that they will continue to contribute to the U in the years ahead.”

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