Tag: "Simon Faculty"

Scholarship Weekend is More than Earning Increased Scholarship Support!

By: Jonathan Markowicz

Scholarship weekend at Simon goes by very quickly. A lot is packed into a short amount of time. However, I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way. The opportunity to earn a full scholarship meant the difference between launching my own company while at Simon and not. Therefore, I came to scholarship weekend with a strategy, which was to make an impression.

For me this meant more than just schmoozing with classmates and alumni. My professional background was directing a community rowing program and serving in the United States Air Force- far from Wall Street. I never did a case study before, let alone participate in a competition. When I was handed our case on Ikea, I read it through and thought, “Now what do I do?” Furthermore, I was nervous that people would converse using business jargon and I would have no idea what they were talking about. I couldn’t fake what I didn’t know. Therefore, I needed to highlight my strengths: my communication skills, my creativity, and my energy.

That weekend, we turned my hotel room into base ops where we worked diligently on our Ikea presentation. I worry that I don’t take things seriously sometimes because we framed our presentation as a travel itinerary, in fact my role in the presentation was the travel agent/emcee, and handed out little soaps and shampoos to the judges as a gimmick. In hindsight, it worked; however, on the day we presented, we had no idea how it would go over and just committed to doing something that no other group would. Not only was this the impression I wanted to leave with Simon, it was my way of giving Simon an idea of what I could bring to the class environment.

I’m reading this over and wondering if it comes across as kind of contrived. Let me conclude, then, by sharing a recent experience. I was down in Brooklyn after Hurricane Sandy helping with the relief efforts. My military unit was stationed at the distribution site at Floyd Bennett Field loading and unloading truckloads of food and supplies. Two men from the Coast Guard pull up to load their vehicle with some water. And, wouldn’t you believe, one of the reservists was a teammate of mine from scholarship weekend. Although he didn’t end up going to Simon, for he resolved to pursue other career opportunities, we quickly reminisced over our over-the-top Ikea presentation, late-night work in the hotel, and the evening reception (which is a story for another time). So, there you have it, an example of making an impression at Simon’s Scholarship Weekend and seeing how far the Simon network can reach when you least expect it. It’s real.

Congratulations to everyone invited and I look forward to meeting you this weekend.

Simon Students Won 1st International Graduate Competition

By: Lingling Chen 

After 48-hours of continuous working, four Simon students – Lingling Chen, MS ’12, Irina Ivanova, MBA ’13, Mahendra Goyal, MBA ’13 and Rajesh Chaudhary, MBA ’13 won the 1st International Graduate Competition held by HEC Montreal, under the guidance of Professor David Tilson. The Simon team was highly acknowledged by their international horizon, in-depth analysis, data-driven insights, creative solutions and convincing presentations. Besides the top prize, they also won the only Best Report Award.

The 1st International Graduate Competition drew together talented graduate students from the world’s top-rated business schools in Finland, Canada, Denmark, Australia and USA. Participants acted as consultants to help a company find the optimal solution to its multifaceted problems of international strategy, marketing, human resource management and finance. “It was a very tough competition since we only had 48 hours to work through 4 interrelated cases, come up with a complete consulting report and two final presentations”, says Lingling Chen, the Marketing Specialist, “I still remember how we struggled until the last minute”.

“It was a very unique and enlightening experience for all of us, because it is a ‘cooperative competition’”, says Rajesh Chaudhary, the Strategy Specialist who is still excited about the wonderful experience. On the first day, functional experts from competing teams worked together to analyze individual cases and find solutions to problems raised in the cases.  On the second day, all experts worked with their own team members to find the optimal solution for all cases and prepare their consulting report, the sales pitch and the final presentation as well. On the third day, each team gave a 15-minute sale pitch intended to convince the judges that they completely understand the key issues and are able to find the best solutions. Teams from Simon School and Copenhagen Business School (Denmark) were chosen as the two best teams and gave a 30-minute final presentation followed by a 20-minute Q&A session.

“We really benefited from Simon’s quantitative education and its diverse student and faculty body”, says Lingling Chen, “the Marketing and Finance Specialists need to be very proficient in multivariate regression and time-series analysis, which we have already fully prepared during our classes and in our daily assignments. The quantitative training positioned me to analyze the trends behind large amounts of data and the diversity at Simon afforded me the opportunity to think about problems in multi-angles”.