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Career Track MBA News

Career Track MBA Student in Prestigious Triathlon Program

Jessica Bottelberghe’s, a student in Boise State’s full-time MBA program, quest to become an Olympic triathlete was recently highlighted on KBOI.

Travis Boersma, Founder of Dutch Bros. Coffee, Delivered an Inspirational Talk at Boise State MBA Students

by Sean Luster

image Travis Boersma, founder Dutch Bros. Coffee, speaks at Boise State 8-20-2015This fall, College of Business and Economics students were treated to an inspirational lecture and Q&A with Travis Boersma, one of the founders of Dutch Bros. Coffee. Travis and his older brother Dane started Dutch Bros. in the early 90s, and the company has blossomed into a growing empire of drive-thru coffee locations throughout the Western U.S. From the start, the brothers made it their mission to not only provide great coffee, but to share a positive and enthusiastic outlook with their customers.

That high-energy, optimistic attitude was apparent throughout the lecture, as Travis wove an amazing tale of humble beginnings working on the family farm, to operating a coffee push cart with a pop-up tent, to becoming “the country’s largest privately held, drive-thru coffee company.” Even having experienced a handful of trials and tribulations, Travis made it clear that having a winning attitude and striving to do better were obvious success factors.image Travis Boersma, founder Dutch Bros. Coffee, Speaks at Boise State 8-20-2015

“Travis had a big impact on me with his down-to-earth attitude and the experiences he’s had starting a business with his brother,” said MBA Career Track student, Sean Luster. “His talk inspired me to continue to push myself and keep growing as a professional and as a person.”

The packed crowd of students and faculty in the audience walked away with a wealth of wisdom and a smile (of course) because Travis, living the Dutch Bros. creed, would not have it any other way.

Career Track MBA Student Team Wins the CFA Institute Global Investment Research Challenge

Five Boise State Career Track MBA students were named champions of the CFA Institute Global Investment Research Challenge (GIRC) yesterday.  The GIRC is an annual competition that provides university students with hands-on mentoring and intensive training in financial analysis.  Students work in teams to research and analyze a publicly traded company, The Boise State team worked on Boise Cascade.  The team members were Jackie Presnell, Nickie Li, Brady Lawrence, Ken Mazur, AND Ebo Makinde. Professor Keith Harvey served as faculty mentor.

Each team writes a research report on their assigned company with a buy, sell, or hold recommendation, and defends their analysis to a panel of CFA judges. Members of the Boise Cascade management team attended the presentations, along with several CFA’s from the Idaho Society.

This is the second consecutive win for Boise State in the regional competition under the mentorship of Professor Harvey.  He commented that “the competition is an incredible learning experience for the students, where the most important lesson is that there’s no substitute for hard work and a team orientation in realizing success. These students worked many late nights, and I couldn’t be more proud of their effort and dedication to one another. The end product is of the same quality you’ll find produced on Wall Street.”

The competition this year consisted of teams from BYU-Idaho, Idaho State University, College of Idaho, and Northwest Nazarene. Boise State’s victory will see the team travel to the Americas competition to be held in Atlanta during April.  Indicative of the prestige of the program, CFA Institute will pay airfare, hotel, food and all ancillary expenses for the teams and their faculty mentors to stay for three nights in the luxurious Lowes hotel in downtown Atlanta.

Boise State Team Advances to Hult Prize Competition for Third Straight Year

Hult prize competition teamA team of Boise State University MBA students has advanced to the regional finals of the sixth annual Hult Prize.

The Hult Prize is the world’s largest student competition and start-up platform for social good.

In partnership with former President Bill Clinton and the Clinton Global Initiative, the innovative crowdsourcing platform identifies and launches disruptive and catalytic social ventures that aim to solve the planet’s most pressing challenges.

Student teams will compete in five cities around the world for a chance to secure $1 million in start-up funding to launch a sustainable social venture. Boise State’s team is from the full-time MBA program in the College of Business and Economics, and includes team members Stephanie Stoenner, Jeremy Branch, Haley Schaefer, Daniel Salamone and Jessica Sokoloski. They will compete in London March 13-14.

Each team selected was chosen from more than 20,000 applications received from more than 500 colleges and universities in 150-plus countries.

“This is the third year in a row that a Boise State MBA student team has advanced to the regional finals of the prestigious Hult Prize,” said Trisha Stevens Lamb, director of the career track MBA program. “This is a testament to how bright, motivated and socially conscious our students are. They are really looking to make a difference in the world and this experience will no doubt shape their global and philanthropic outlook as they become leaders in our communities.”

The Hult Prize gives entrepreneurs from around the world a platform to innovate and revolutionize the way society thinks about servicing the poor. The 2015 Hult Prize will focus on building start-ups that provide sustainable, high-quality early education solutions to 10 million children under the age of 6 who live in urban slums.

“Servicing the world’s poorest through profitable and sustainable enterprise is not just good for the world, it’s great business,” said Ahmad Ashkar, CEO and founder of the Hult Prize Foundation. “We couldn’t be happier that Boise State University will be joining our mission with their participation in the sixth annual Hult Prize.”

The Hult Prize regional final competitions will be held in Boston, San Francisco, London, Dubai and Shanghai. Following the regional finals, one winning team from each host city will move into a summer business incubator, where participants will receive mentorship, advisory and strategic planning as they create prototypes and set up to launch and scale their new ventures. A final round of competition will be hosted by President Bill Clinton and the Clinton Global Initiative at its annual meeting in September, where CGI delegates will select a winning team that will be awarded the $1 million prize.

MBA Students, Walmart Work to Boost Idaho Manufacturing

IMG_8502For years, Walmart’s ads have proclaimed them the “low-priced leader.” And for years, some have criticized the largest retailer in the world on that very issue, noting that those low prices often seem to be on products made in countries with very low labor rates.

In response, Walmart has started an ambitious program to reverse the trend and bring manufacturing jobs back to the United States.

The company reached out to several states, including Idaho, for help in their efforts at re-shoring. They want to source an additional $50 billion worth of American-made goods over the next decade and asked governors if their states would like a piece of the action.

After a meeting with Walmart executives, Idaho Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter reached out to Boise State President Bob Kustra for help figuring out how Idaho companies might benefit. Kustra suggested a team of MBA students might be right for the challenge.

“We thought this was a good project for our Career Track MBA students,” said Kirk Smith, associate dean in the College of Business and Economics. “So we recruited a small team of interested students and then were fortunate enough to convince Rick Seymour, a retired Hewlett-Packard executive, to mentor them.”

Under Seymour’s guidance, the students have worked since last fall with the Idaho Department of Commerce, Walmart executives and several Idaho businesses to tackle the question, “How can Idaho businesses capture some of that $50 billion?”

In late March, the MBA students met with Governor Otter and offered three strategies:

  1. Match companies that already are making what Walmart needs, and connect them to existing opportunities. Educate Idaho businesses on how to work with Walmart.
  2. Grow new suppliers by finding serial entrepreneurs who used to live in Idaho but have moved to other states. Convince them to return and start a supplier business.
  3. Entice some of Walmart’s existing international suppliers to relocate manufacturing operations to Idaho. 

The students, who all tackled the problem on a volunteer basis, interviewed quite a few local manufacturers. They found that many of them quickly dismissed the idea of selling to Walmart because either they were intimidated by the mega-store’s status or because they had absolutely no idea of how to start the process of becoming a Walmart supplier.

Based on those findings, the students are creating “Walmart 101,” a short video to help Idaho companies find out quickly what it takes to do business with Walmart. The video will be available statewide through local chambers of commerce, who can show it to members and follow up with a question-and-answer session.

Otter called the students’ multi-faceted plan promising, adding “I look forward to this plan being put in motion and to Idaho’s promising business future with young people like these at the helm.”

Boise State University Career Track MBA Team BrewPRO Wins at Global Business Competition

image Boise State MBA Team winners of the Nemec Elevator Challenge

Mark Rogers, Kyle Mulder, Kent Neupert (advisor), Hannah Derrick and Remington Turner

Boise State University MBA team, BrewPRO, won the Nemec Elevator Challenge at the 2014 Global Venture Labs Investment Competition, held in Austin, Texas over the weekend. Forty teams from around the globe sent their premier business students to compete for awards and cash prizes in recognition of best business plan and business pitch. For their win, the Boise State team brought home a cash prize of $1,500.

BrewPRO is a student created company that offers all-in-one home brewing kits that allow home-brewers to overcome current pain points by focusing on simple systems, a supportive online marketplace and successful beer brewing.  The team is made up of five Career Track MBA students:  Kyle Mulder, Remington Turner, Mark Rogers, Thomas Atkins, and Hannah Derrick. Kent Neupert, professor in the College of Business and Economics and director of the Center for Entrepreneurship, was the team coach and advisor. The team was sponsored by the College of Business and Economics and the Center for Entrepreneurship.

Student teams participated in a venture tradeshow in which they presented their businesses and products to experts in the field. BrewPRO gained recognition at this event with genuine interest in their unique home brewing product offering. BrewPRO went on to compete in an investment pitch round presenting the business idea to a panel of six venture capitalists. Mulder, graduate assistant at the Center for Entrepreneurship, represented the team in the elevator pitch round, winning the cash award.

The Global Venture Labs Investment Competition is the top competition for student-founded ventures. Now in its 31st year, it brings the top 40 student teams from around the world to Austin Texas to pitch their ideas to venture capitalists for prize money and venture capital investment. This year’s Grand Prize winner was Innoblative Designs, a Northwestern University team that commercializes an innovative technology for the treatment of early stage breast cancer.

More information about the Global Venture Labs Investment Competition is available at mccombs.utexas.edu/Centers/Texas-Venture-Labs/Investment-Competition/Global-Competition

MBA Student, Yeng Chi Morel, Running to Support Learning

image Boise State MBA student Yeng Chi Morel

Yeng Chi Morel, a native of Mexico and  soon-to-be-graduate of the Career Track MBA program, is teaming up to take on the Sawtooth Relay in central Idaho on June 14 to benefit the Running for Learning 2014 campaign, specifically the Lee Pesky Learning Center.

“It is a fundraising opportunity to raise awareness, give back to our community and help students in need,”  says Chi Morel.

Chi Morel and her  team members:  Evelyn Johnson (Lee Pesky Learning Center’s executive director), Mary Jo Surges-Prokop, Pragnyaa Chakravarthy, Michael Shaughnessy and Abel Morel will cover 12 legs, 61.9 miles, beginning at Stanley and finishing in Ketchum.

Chi Morel connected with the Lee Pesky Learning Center though the Career Track MBA program, which provides graduate students work experience with placement in organizations.

“I have gained hands-on experience as a full-time summer intern in the Lee Pesky Learning Center,” Chi Morel says. “This practice and my master’s program have opened doors for me to learn more about the nonprofit sector, to grow my professional network and to connect with inspiring and innovative business leaders. It is great to be able to give back to the Lee Pesky Learning Center.”

The Lee Pesky Learning Center is a nonprofit organization based in Boise that provides learning tools to those with learning disabilities to help them be successful in school and in life.

Click Here to support this fundraiser Running for Learning 2014!

MBA Students Present Walmart Project to Idaho Governor

Boise State MBA Students with Idaho GovernorFor years, Walmart’s ads have proclaimed them the “low-priced leader.” And for years, some have criticized the largest retailer in the world on that very issue, noting that those low prices often seem to be on products made in countries with very low labor rates.

In response, Walmart has started an ambitious program to reverse the trend and bring manufacturing jobs back to the United States.

The company reached out to several states, including Idaho, for help in their efforts at re-shoring. They want to source an additional $50 billion worth of American-made goods over the next decade and asked governors if their states would like a piece of the action.

After a meeting with Walmart executives, Idaho Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter reached out to Boise State President Bob Kustra for help figuring out how Idaho companies might benefit. Kustra suggested a team of MBA students might be right for the challenge.

“We thought this was a good project for our Career Track MBA students,” said Kirk Smith, associate dean in the College of Business and Economics. “So we recruited a small team of interested students and then were fortunate enough to convince Rick Seymour, a retired Hewlett-Packard executive, to mentor them.”

Under Seymour’s guidance, the students have worked since last fall with the Idaho Department of Commerce, Walmart executives and several Idaho businesses to tackle the question, “How can Idaho businesses capture some of that $50 billion?”

In late March, the MBA students met with Governor Otter and offered three strategies:

  1. Match companies that already are making what Walmart needs, and connect them to existing opportunities. Educate Idaho businesses on how to work with Walmart.
  2. Grow new suppliers by finding serial entrepreneurs who used to live in Idaho but have moved to other states. Convince them to return and start a supplier business.
  3. Entice some of Walmart’s existing international suppliers to relocate manufacturing operations to Idaho.

The students, who all tackled the problem on a volunteer basis, interviewed quite a few local manufacturers. They found that many of them quickly dismissed the idea of selling to Walmart because either they were intimidated by the mega-store’s status or because they had absolutely no idea of how to start the process of becoming a Walmart supplier.

Based on those findings, the students are creating “Walmart 101,” a short video to help Idaho companies find out quickly what it takes to do business with Walmart. The video will be available statewide through local chambers of commerce, who can show it to members and follow up with a question-and-answer session.

Otter called the students’ multi-faceted plan promising, adding “I look forward to this plan being put in motion and to Idaho’s promising business future with young people like these at the helm.”

Career Track MBA Students Headed to 2014 Pacific West Regional Student Conference

COBE HR Competition

A Career Track MBA team is heading to the 2014 Pacific West Regional Student Conference in Portland on April 4-5, specifically for the case competition portion. The conference is sponsored by the Society for Human Resource Management. The team consists of Amanda Mumford, Kelly Suter, Chase Twilley and Erin Denney. The team will compete to win two grand prizes: $2,500 cash and complimentary team registration to the 2014 Annual Conference & Exposition in Orlando. COBE lecturer Decateur Reed is the coach of the teams.

Come Learn About All of Boise State’s MBA Programs at MBA Open House

Find out more about all of our MBA programs at our MBA Informational Open House where you will be able to meet with program directors and current students in the program.

When: Friday, March 14 at 5:30pm
Where: Micron Business and Economics Building Room 2302 (Imagination Lab)
RSVP: Please RSVP by 3/11/14 at Open House RSVP