AU “Best of the Nest” team earns second place in business strategy competition

04/27/2020 ASHLAND, Ohio -- Four AU Dauch College of Business & Economics students were awarded second place for Best Overall Performance in their “world” at the International Collegiate Business Strategy Competition, hosted by California State University--Long Beach. 

The competition finals originally were to be conducted in California but were moved to an online platform in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. Still, it included virtual decision rounds, opening and closing ceremonies, team meetings, advisor meetings and informal and formal judges meetings, as well as team presentations from all across the US, as well as Hong Kong. 

AU’s “Best of the Nest” team included:
* Rachel Stallard, a Marketing and Business Management major from Medina, who graduated in December of 2019 and started a job at Signet Jewelers.

* Taylor Elliott, a Supply Chain Management major with a Business Management minor and a specialization in Project Management from Ashland. Elliott, who will graduate in December, is the executive director of marketing for Eagle Consulting, the secretary for Eagle Entrepreneurs and a member of The Association for Supply Chain Management,

* Coleton Heffelfinger,  a Finance and Business Management major from Loudonville. He will graduate in May and hopes to secure a position as a financial analyst. He has been involved in Eagle Investment Group, where he and 11 other Finance majors collectively developed an active stock portfolio of $1.5 million of the University’s Endowment.

* Elizabeth Paydo, a Business Management, Entrepreneurship, and Supply Chain Management major from Wadsworth. She will graduate in May and then return to Ashland University in the fall to pursue her Master’s in Business Administration with a specialization in Project Management. Paydo has been president of both Eagle Consulting and Eagle Entrepreneurs.

The team’s advisors are Pat Berry and Rebecca Schmeller.

The competition began in February (with weekly decision rounds) then culminated with the finals phase April 16-18.

The AU team ran its simulated, publicly held international company for 20 decision rounds (quarterly for five years). Students make decision about company operations – finance, marketing, accounting, operations, human resources –and then put those decision into a simulation computer.

“Rebecca and I are truly blessed to have been the advisors for this team, but the winners are the students. While we had to do the intensive phase via Zoom, due to the (pandemic), in lieu of face to face in California, this team amazed the judges and administrators with its strategic planning and financial skills,” said Berry.  “I cannot say enough good things about this team other than they are a top-shelf group and I would be happy to help them get a job in the business world should they have the desire.

Ashland University is a mid-sized, private university conveniently located a short distance from Akron, Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio. Ashland University (www.ashland.eduvalues the individual student and offers a unique educational experience that combines the challenge of strong, applied academic programs with a faculty and staff who build nurturing relationships with their students.###