Shining A Light On Family Business Education
- By John M Turner
Never mind the polar vortex, last week the University of Vermont School of Business Administration hosted their annual Family Enterprise Case Competition (FECC) and became the global vortex of case competition. Nineteen teams from some of the best business schools on four continents descended on Burlington, Vermont with one goal in mind - to win the cup and bragging rights.
After four days of competition, students from Jönköping International Business School in Sweden won the graduate competition, while the John Molson School of Business at Concordia University in Montreal, took the top slot in the undergraduate rankings.
Students, judges and sponsors from more than 25 countries, travelled from as far away as Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia, Chile and Sweden to compete in this unique event. Now in its second year, FECC focuses on issues that impact family businesses, something that many competitors know about first hand.
"The School of Business Administration is once again proud to be a leader in the field of family enterprise by hosting this global event," said Dean Sanjay Sharma, of the University of Vermont School of Business Administration. "The Family Enterprise Case Competition highlighted that the issues that affect family businesses know no boundaries."
Ramia Marielle El Agamy, one of the judges and Editor-in-Chief of Tharawat magazine, (the leading family business magazine in the world) said "I think its important for family businesses around the world to learn that this competition is going on," she continued "I think this competition is a really great idea, and executed in the way as it is here in Vermont... it's fantastic."
Her sentiments were echoed by both coaches from the winning teams. Mark Haber, coach of the John Molson School of Business at Concordia University in Canada said "it's a lot of fun, my philosophy is if I'm having fun, I transfer the fun to the students, they learn without even knowing they're learning" while Mattias Nordqvist, coach of the Jönköping International Business School team stated "it's very important for our school to be here, because it's a competition where all the best universities in the world with family business programs go."
In the graduate competition, second place went to Kellogg School of Management, while in the undergraduate competition the second, third, fourth and fifth places went to University of Vermont, Dalhousie University, Asper School of Business and Stetson University respectively.
Along with the overall and divisional winners, the following awards were also handed out:
Final Case Best Presenter
- Luis Sixtus Esquivias, Kellogg School of Management, USA
- Elizabeth Whitney, University of Vermont, USA
Divisional Best Presenter Awards
- Guido Diana, Windesheim University of Applied Sciences, Netherlands
- Jacob Czarniecki, Grand Valley State University, USA
- Hillary Dzialowski, Whitman School of Management, Syracuse University, USA
- Robyn Worrall, University of Vermont, USA
- Yeoh Sze Jinn, Universiti Tun Abdul Razak, Malaysia
- Corey Walters, University of Massachusetts, USA
- Team Spirit, Universidad Panamericana, Guadalajara, Mexico
- Most Creative Team, Grand Valley State University, USA
- Team Coach, Robin Ritchie, Sprott School of Business, Carleton University, Canada
- Student Ambassador, Taylor Kammerer
- Student Ambassador, Yuqi Zhou
The FECC was made possible thanks to 30 individual and business sponsors.
Applications are already being received for the 2015 competition. If you are interested in participating, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.