Elon MBA Class of 2019 competes in capstone case analysis event

The graduating class applied the knowledge and skills acquired throughout their studies to a business case analysis.  

Forty-four MBA candidates completed the Elon MBA case competition, a signature experience for each year’s graduating class.

Teams applied what they’ve learned throughout their time in the MBA program to analyze the case of a small winery, examining the business’ challenges and the financial ramifications of expanding the business. After evaluating options, teams presented their recommendations for the business strategy to a panel of judges on Feb. 9.

“The MBA 502 case competition was a great way to wrap up the program,” said Morgan Hood, director of marketing at Morrisette. “It required us to incorporate everything we learned – from finance to strategy to communications – throughout our time at Elon in order to succeed.”

Hood, along with teammates Bradley Knesel, assoc. administrative director, Anatomic Pathology at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center; Thomas Fitzgerald, principal at Schnabel Engineering; and Joe Ward ’15, senior coordinator of regional alumni engagement at Elon University; placed first in the competition.

“It was very rewarding to collaborate with such a diverse and hard-working group,” Fitzgerald said. “Everyone brought a unique perspective, resulting in a holistic evaluation and recommendations.”

“We learned a lot from each other and brought out each other’s strengths,” Ward added. “We knew it was going to take a team effort to deliver an effective recommendation.”

Michael Gannaway, Love School of Business executive-in-residence; Jody Jones, a professional business consultant and adjunct professor of strategic management; Matt Valle, Martha and Spencer Love Professor of Business; and Jay O’Toole, assistant professor of strategic management; served as judges, evaluating teams on presentation delivery, solution quality, and a question and answer session.

“The capstone project presented a challenging and engaging experience, allowing my team to showcase what we have learned in the program,” Knesel said. “It was an awesome experience to work with a great group of individuals, whom I was fortunate to have worked with in other classes.”

The runner-up team was Victoria Brown, clinical trial manager at Innocrin Pharmaceuticals; Jackie Morse, senior marketing manager at Red Hat; Cathy O’Neill, business manager at Duke University School of Medicine; and Justin Thompson, senior product engineer at Suntech Medical, Inc.

Designed for working professionals from Winston-Salem, Greensboro, Raleigh and beyond, the Elon MBA offers a part-time program with full-time benefits. Elon MBA students benefit from small class sizes, a curriculum focused on the transfer of course content to practical application, career services and an extraordinary faculty committed to teaching and engaged learning.