Category: Undergraduate Students

Net Impact Undergraduate Club Earns Gold Standing

June 29th, 2012 in Energy & Environment Sector, News, School, Student Activities, Students, Undergraduate Students

One of Just Nine Lauded Chapters Across the Nation

Photo by Cydney Scott for Boston University Photography

Net Impact held 22 events throughout the year, including an initiative to get students to pledge to reduce their usage of paper cups. The pledges are shown above hanging in the School's atrium. Photo by Cydney Scott via BU Today.

The national headquarters of Net Impact (whose mission is “to mobilize a new generation of students to use their careers to drive transformational change in their workplaces and the world”) announced that the undergraduate chapter at Boston University has achieved Gold Chapter standing, a designation awarded to only nine of 67 undergraduate chapters.

According to Liz Maw, CEO of Net Impact, “This is a tremendous achievement. Gold chapters are the most outstanding in the Net Impact network, which includes over 300 chapters around the world. They play an integral role in helping us to provide support, connections, and practical advice to help people in all sectors and job functions create a more just and sustainable future.”

To earn gold, a chapter has to have a higher than normal level of events, they have to send a representative to the national conference, and they need to provide at least one “impact program.” The achievement also reflects strong support from the University and the faculty advisors, she added. Assistant Professor Kira Fabrizio and Executive in Residence and Lecturer Paul McManus (both of strategy & innovation) advise the club.

The Boston University undergraduate chapter, led by president Joe Nangle (BSBA’12), held 22 events to benefit the student body and surrounding community throughout the year. Teaming with Sustainabilty@BU, SMG Student Government, business fraternity Delta Sigma Pi, and the Starbucks location at SMG, the club got students to pledge to reduce their usage of paper cups, and distributed almost 500 reusable mugs to replace them. They also ran panel discussions on “The Art of Social Entrepreneurship,” and another on “Finance for Good.” The club also ran Sustainability Sundays, informal gatherings where anyone on campus was invited to gather and discuss important events in the sustainability realm.

Honors Program’s Spring Service Trip

April 20th, 2012 in Student Activities, Undergraduate Students

Undergrads Work in D.C. Over Spring Break

Alternative Spring Break Honors Program
 
Boston University always has an enormous number of students participate in Alternative Spring Break, and School of Management students have been well represented among them. This spring, a group of undergrad School of Management Honors Program students decided to travel to the nation’s capital for an alternative alternative spring break, or as the honors program billed it, the Spring Service Trip.

“Between the people that we met, the work we were able to do, and the cultural experience of being in D.C., it was amazing,” said Liz Katz, assistant director in the Undergraduate Program Office, and one of the two advisers on the trip.

The students aided in the District’s fight against hunger and homelessness, volunteering at several organizations over the course of the first week of March.

“The organizations where we worked were ready for us and loved that we came all this way to lend a hand. They usually rely on local volunteers,” Katz said.

“By being able to volunteer over spring break and to brighten the days of those people whom we served, I am proud to say that I am a part of an honors program that is full of humble and kind people,” said Rebecca Lang (BSBA’14).

The group helped out at two supportive housing sites for formerly homeless families and in the soup kitchens at So Others Might Eat (SOME), helped prepare meals from local ingredients for public school students at DC Central Kitchen’s program Fresh Start, and spent a day at the Capital Area Food Bank inspecting and sorting through donations.

“I feel one of the most valuable experiences for the students was their exposure to the SOME  dining room,” Katz said.  ”It wasn’t just the ‘obviously’ homeless. There were people there in work uniforms, some families as neat and clean as could be. You got the sense they could have been your neighbors and friends. It put a really different face on hunger and homelessness.”

The trip itself was the honors program student leaders’ response to the increased requirement in volunteer hours for freshmen honors students, and the brain child of Selena Su (BSBA’14).

Su pitched the idea for an honors alternative to the Undergraduate Program office. This, she reasoned, would also help current honors freshmen fulfill the community service hours.

Su said the idea got her the position as coordinator.

“I planned a trip to Washington, D.C.,” Su said, “but it’s the first time that it’s been done so I didn’t have a lot to go on.”

Not allowing precedent to restrain her, Su contacted a handful of organizations in the D.C. area, and helped the trip come to fruition.

“By being able to volunteer over spring break and to brighten the days of those people whom we served, I am proud to say that I am a part of an honors program that is full of humble and kind people,” said Rebecca Lang (BSBA’14).

“We worked hard, played hard, and relaxed in-between,” said Sahiba Chopra (BSBA’14). “And we left DC with the satisfaction of knowing that we actually made a difference, however small.”

By Lauren Dezenski

KontrolTV Wins ITEC’s 12th Annual $50K New Venture Competition

April 5th, 2012 in Digital Technology Sector, Entrepreneurship, News, School, Student Activities, Students, Undergraduate Students

From left to right: Professor Pete Russo, Director of Entrepreneurship Programs; Beth Goldstein, Director of the K New Venture Competition; and winners Juan Pablo Gnecco with son Daniel Gnecco (SMG'12).

From left to right: Senior Lecturer Pete Russo, Director of Entrepreneurship Programs; Beth Goldstein, Director of the $50K New Venture Competition; and KontrolTV winners Juan Pablo Gnecco with son Daniel Gnecco (BSBA'12). Photo via BU ITEC.

Story via BU ITEC:

Congratulations to Daniel Gnecco (BSBA’12) whose company, KontrolTV, won first place in this year’s 12th annual $50K New Venture Competition. KontrolTV’s mission is to design an application that would make it possible to use a mobile phone like a television remote control, allowing the user to find and launch TV listings. The application would also allow you to see what your friends are watching on TV in real time. Gnecco started his company with his father, Juan Pablo Gnecco, and Alan Queen, an engineer from Gnecco’s hometown of Atlanta.

In addition to winning BU’s Competition, Gnecco has landed $500,000 in seed money from Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban. KontrolTV was also selected as the winner of the TeleEMG People’s Choice Award, representing the company the audience believed is most likely to succeed.

Landing the second place position was BU alum Michael Adelizzi (ENG’02). His company, Stabiliz Orthopaedics, based in Philadelphia, focuses on developing innovative orthopaedic medical devices for the treatment of traumatic bone fractures. The company’s lead product is a hybrid metallic-resorbable plate and screw system that allows surgeons to customize the healing process, eliminate the need for future surgeries, and reduce overall health care costs. Michael started the company in 2008 with colleagues Douglas Cerynik, MD and Bradley Grossman.

Third place was won by City Fuel Company, headed by Diego Torres-Palma (MBA’13) and MIT graduate Matthew Pearlson. City Fuel is a small-scale renewable fuel technology company that plans to put Massachusetts at the leading edge of renewable energy and transportation technology. Its technology can convert new and used vegetable oils into fuels and chemicals.

Judges for the competition include: Louis Volpe (MBA’78), Kodiak Venture Partners; Charles Lax (BSBA’82), Grandbanks Capital; Eugene Hill (MBA’80), SV Life Sciences; and David Verrill, Hub Angels Investment Group.

The $50K New Venture Competition is generously supported by ITEC’s valued business partners: Cummings Properties, GrandBanks Capital, Kodiak Venture Partners, Morse, Barnes-Brown & Pendleton, Paul Horn & Associates, SV Life Sciences, TeleEMG, and WilmerHale.

Finalists Chosen for Hartford Case Comp

March 5th, 2012 in News, Students, Undergraduate Students

Finals Set for March 30 in Hartford, CT

The Feld Career Center was happy to host The Hartford on campus this past Monday evening for the second annual Campus Case Competition. Five teams from Boston University competed for the $1,000 top prize. Each team was asked to prepare and present for 15 minutes on the following criteria:

  • Terriers Financial Services Company (Terriers), a fictitious company offering a full range of insurance and investment products, is interested in utilizing mobile technology applications to improve their business segments.
  • Terriers hired your consulting team to analyze the mobile technology trends and opportunities for the company.
  • The final deliverable is a recommendation on what the mobile application will do regarding the best option to achieve Terriers’ goals.

Executives from The Hartford were judges on the panel and their decision was difficult in selecting a winner as members from each team had great presentations skills and analytical thinking. The winning SMG team (below) consisted of Myron Chen (Tay Jen-Ti) (BSBA ’13), Yiwei (Vivian) Chen (BSBA ’14), Christopher Kovalik (BSBA ’13), Katrina Lyter (BSBA ’13), and Haobo Shen (BSBA ’13).

From left to right: Katrina Lyter, Vivian Chen, Haobo Shen, Timothy Nazzaro (from The Hartford), Myron Tay, and Christopher Kovalik. Katrina will not be able to represent BU in the finals as she will be in another competition, rowing with the BU crew team.

From left to right: Katrina Lyter, Vivian Chen, Haobo Shen, Timothy Nazzaro (from The Hartford), Myron Chen, and Christopher Kovalik. Katrina will not be able to represent BU in the finals as she will be in another competition, rowing with the BU crew team.

They received a $1K prize to share and will represent Boston University for the final round presentation at The Hartford headquarters on March 30th. There they will compete against teams from Bentley, Bryant, and the University of Connecticut for an additional $1K.

SMG Alums’ Boston Nightlife Express Takes Off

March 2nd, 2012 in Alumni, Entrepreneurship, News, Undergraduate Students

New Bus Service Caters to College Club-Goers

Eric Pasinski (SAR’11) (left) and Jonathan Castillo (SMG’11) stick their Boston Nightlife Express sign to the side of a charter bus. Photo by Cydney Scott, BU Today

Eric Pasinski (SAR’11) and Jonathan Castillo (SMG’11) stick their Boston Nightlife Express sign to the side of a charter bus. Photo by Cydney Scott, BU Today

Excerpts from BU Today:

With the thermostat hovering in the 20s last Friday night, BU alums Ryan Kaplan, Eric Pasinski, and Jonathan Castillo gingerly applied a sticky sign the size of a giant toboggan to the side of a charter bus. They were shooting for zero bubbling and a level presentation, and they nailed it. Castillo squeezed out extra air with a yardstick.

“This is the most stressful part of our night,” Kaplan (SMG ’11) said with a laugh.

That’s quite a statement, considering that their new business, Boston Nightlife Express (BNE), involves shuttling buses of college students to and from Boston nightclubs and adhering to tight schedules despite unpredictable traffic—all while wearing the hats of promoter, market researcher, bouncer, and businessman.

BNE launched Veterans Day weekend, initially serving only Boston University students. Having turned a profit by its fourth run, the alumni now provide rides to Emerson College students going to parties in Allston. And this night they have begun service for Endicott College students, busing them from Beverly, Mass., and back, with plans to expand to more universities, like Boston College in late February and Tufts and Brandeis shortly afterwards.

Kaplan and a team of School of Management students hatched the idea for the shuttle service in an entrepreneurship class senior year. Each of the students had horror stories about taxi rides home after a night of clubbing. They were tired of paying exorbitant fares and waiting in the cold for long periods (Kaplan’s record is an hour and a half). Their idea was voted best in the class, but only Kaplan wanted to pursue it after graduation. He recruited Pasinski and Castillo (both entrepreneurs and college friends), and the trio began work on BNE last summer.

Read the full article here.

Visit the BNE website for more information, and see their recent feature in the Boston Globe.

Finance Undergrads Win Boston Regional

February 28th, 2012 in Finance, News, School, Students, Undergraduate Students

SMG Seniors Win Boston Investment Research Challenge

Next: On to the Americas Regional

 

Chris Fanning, a team mentor from Wellington Management, with undergraduate students Eldar Karymsakov, Elaine Lin, Amit Singh, Luiza Santos, and Professor Scott Stewart.

Chris Fanning, a team mentor from Wellington Management, with undergraduate students Eldar Karymsakov, Elaine Lin, Amit Singh, Luiza Santos, and Research Professor Scott Stewart.

The School of Management finance undergrads have done it again.

Congratulations to Boston University School of Management students Amit Singh, Elaine Lin, Eldar Karymsakov, and Luiza Santos (all BSBA’12) for winning the Boston Investment Research Challenge on Wednesday, February 15, 2012.

This is the fourth year in a row that BU has made the final round in the Boston Investment Research Challenge, and the second time that our students have won.

The competition is sponsored by the Boston Security Analyst Society and the CFA Institute. Area schools join the competition by invitation (based on past performance) and prepare a written investment research report in the fall. Most schools send teams of MBAs, but not BU. Four schools were selected from this group: BU was joined by Bentley undergrads, and Brandeis and MIT MBAs for the February 15 finals competition where student teams presented their analyses and recommendations.

As the winners of the Boston round, Singh, Lin, Karymsakov, and Santos will now advance to the Americas Regional in New York City on April 10th to compete against other winning teams from North and South America. The BU team finished third at the NYC round in 2009.

Teams who win in New York advance to the world finals.

The students have worked closely with Research Professor Scott Stewart of the Finance department in a directed study on investment. To compete on the Investment Research Challenge team, the students have to have been part of the BU Finance Club and also enroll in a rigorous directed study where they do a deep analysis of an industry, and then a deeper investment analysis of a chosen company within that industry.

“The reason our students are so strong,” says Stewart, “is that they get exposure to business analysis and valuation early on in the School’s Finance Club and fine tune these skills in the directed study program. It’s run much like an investment research department, with a hierarchy of analysts and traders who investigate—and invest in—real companies, with faculty guidance. As freshmen, students start to pick up the vocabulary and build early skills as members of one of 8-10 investment teams. They gain more responsibility each year, and by senior year, they’re way ahead of most students elsewhere. The directed study program takes this skill set to a professional level, where members become specialists on their own in a narrowly-defined industry. These students in turn are leaders in the club and teach others about investment research. ”

Alumnus Jason Krishnan (BSBA ’03), one of the earliest members of the Finance Club and the directed study program, is today a CFA charterholder and research analyst with RGM Capital in Naples, FL. “The combination of the club and the directed study was an excellent way to learn how to do research and exposed us to the real work we might one day be doing. You see the good and the bad, learn what data are most important to an investment decision and how to succinctly communicate an investment recommendation to your peers.  When I went to my first finance internship interview, I already knew what the job entailed and that got my foot in the door. That in turn, led to my job today.”

For more information, please visit The Boston Security Analysts Society and the tournament bracket.

BU Students Place 2nd in Alpha Kappa Psi’s Case Competition

February 21st, 2012 in News, Students, Undergraduate Students

Boston University School of Management students Kate Blaes (BSBA’13), Michael Ely (BSBA’14), and Christine Yi (BSBA’15)  won second place in the fifth annual Principled Business Leadership Institute’s Case Competition in Philadelphia last weekend, taking home a scholarship prize of $750.

Boston University students Kate Blaes, Michael Ely and Christine Yi won second place in the Fifth Annual February Principled Business Leadership Institute’s Case Competition in Philadelphia this past weekend, taking home a scholarship prize of 0.

Boston University students Christine Yi, Michael Ely, and Kate Blaes won second place in the Fifth Annual February Principled Business Leadership Institute’s Case Competition in Philadelphia this past weekend, taking home a scholarship prize of $750.

Representing BU’s Nu Chapter of co-educational business fraternity Alpha Kappa Psi (AKP), chapter president Blaes and members Ely and Yi completed a market analysis and forecasted financials on a Harvard Business School case. Teams from the University of Pennsylvania’s Epsilon Rho Chapter placed first and third in the competition.

The AKP Foundation sponsored the members-only competition, where teams from thirteen chapters participated. The competition is designed to prepare students for future managerial positions by introducing them to the challenges of decision making and giving them first-hand experience in analyzing business situations. The competition is part of the Principled Business Leader’s Institute, a weekend-long educational business conference for AKP affiliates.

Blaes, Ely, and Yi were given one month to solve the fictional case study and presented their findings in a 20-minute presentation to a panel of four judges, followed by a 15-minute Q&A. They also submitted a four-page business plan detailing their assessment and recommendations of the case, in which they had to decide whether or not an independent hotel in Zurich should become a franchisee of a branded hotel.

“We essentially dissected the case, went on to forecast the financials,” said Blaes, an accounting and finance concentrator, “and then did a very thorough market research of the hospitality industry and hotel valuation index. We wanted to incorporate the area in which the case was going to fall because we knew there would be a Q&A session and didn’t want to base our findings only on financials.”

Associate Professor Jeffrey Furman of the School of Management strategy department, and a chapter faculty brother, advised the group. “Professor Furman had the idea of explaining pros and cons of the situation rather than just giving our recommendations. This gave us the advantage of being objective about everything,” said Yi, a law concentrator.

“We applied a lot of the things we learned in SMG when preparing the case. SMG teaches you how to efficiently communicate with words, especially with PowerPoint and visuals. You learn how to speak about what matters,” added Ely.

The $750 scholarship prize will go towards the Nu Chapter’s own case competition, created by SMG faculty. The competition is slated to take place this spring and is open to all BU students. The winning team of the Nu Chapter Case Competition will claim a prize ranging from $1,000 to $2,000.

For more information about the Alpha Kappa Psi Nu Chapter, contact Tori Chang at tchang@bu.edu or visit buakpsi.com.

 

Dean’s Speaker Series: The World Economy in Crisis

December 1st, 2011 in Dean Freeman, Dean's Speaker Series, Lifelong Learning, News, Undergraduate Students, Video

On November 8, 2011, Boston University School of Management hosted the first event in this year’s Dean’s Speaker Series, “The World Economy in Crisis: Debt, Double-dip, Employment Outlook – What Happens Next?”

The event featured a panel of experts discussing the state of the world economy and its effect on business, globalization, employment, and international relations. Much of the discussion was driven by questions from the audience.

Panelists included:

Jeffrey L. Knight, Head of Global Asset Allocation, Putnam Investments
Lawrence Kotlikoff, Professor, Department of Economics
Michael Salinger, Professor, Markets, Public Policy & Law
John Zhao, CEO of Hony Capital

Boston University School of Management Dean Ken Freeman moderated the event.

On November 8, 2011, Boston University School of Management hosted the first event in this year’s Dean’s Speaker Series, “The World Economy in Crisis: Debt, Double-dip, Employment Outlook – What Happens Next?” The event featured a panel of experts discussing the state of the world economy and its effects on business, globalization, employment, and international relations. Much of the discussion was driven by questions from the audience.

Undergrad Team Takes Top Place at Two New Concept Competitions

November 7th, 2011 in Entrepreneurship, News, Students, Undergraduate Students

ArtCereal Credits School of Management Training for Competitive Success

ArtCerealThe School of Management (SMG) undergraduates behind the new creative venture ArtCereal have taken top prize at the Boston Startup Weekend and in the Terrier Trap $1K Concept Competition both held recently at Boston University to support entrepreneurs in refining new business concepts.

ArtCereal offers a student art brokerage website, connecting student artwork with buyers. The team behind the idea includes Alessandro Cetera (Marketing and International Management, SMG ’12), John DeFelice (General Management, SMG ’12), Clara Luo (Finance & Marketing, SMG ’12), Dan Stalls (International Management, SMG ’13), Olivia Wilson (Marketing & Entrepreneurship, SMG ’14), and Max Veggeberg (Entrepreneurship, SMG ’12), as well as Nilesh Khaitan (CAS/ENG, ’15), and Arnaud Rouyer and Jenny Ha from beyond BU.

ArtCereal’s Mission: Bringing a Simple Solution to a Nationwide Problem

Says the ArtCereal team, “We wanted to build a business that could provide artists with a platform to showcase and sell their artwork to the community. Many of us have friends who are art majors and often had to throw out or give away paintings because they could no longer store them. Our goal was to take a nationwide problem and develop a simple solution that could become a viable business. Our mission is to make art accessible to everyone and create a marketplace for beautiful, original, and affordable art.”

“After going through SMG’s CORE, we knew what tasks had to be prioritized and how to properly delegate work among team members in order to be efficient.”

About the Competitions: Supporting Entrepreneurs in Refining New Product Concepts

The Boston Startup Weekend was held October 14-16. Participants were given 54 hours to develop a commercial case around a new product in the creative industries.  Each team was challenged to construct the framework of their proposed new business, build a web or application presence for it, and present their initiative to a panel of judges drawn from the local startup community. Pitches were judged on three criteria: viability of the business model, execution of presentation, and strategic targeting of customers. In addition to noting ArtCeral’s excellence in each of these areas, the judges also praised ArtCereal for its innovation in filling an untapped market niche.

The Terrier Trap $1K Business Concept Competition, also held on October 14, is another Boston University initiative designed to help students learn about the process of formulating and refining an entrepreneurial idea.  Teams presented their business plans to a group of resource experts from the university and local business community, who judged  for the commercial potential for the concept, evidence of sound strategic thinking, and quality of written and oral presentation.

Tapping Lessons Learned in the SMG Classroom and Beyond

“Also from our SMG experience, we had a good general sense of how different aspects of a business need to function and work together.”

“Because we only had 54 hours to develop a brief business plan” for the Boston Startup Weekend, says the ArtCereal team, “it was extremely important to have good time management, project organization, and team communication. After going through [the SMG required curriculum] CORE, we knew what tasks had to be prioritized and how to properly delegate work among  team members in order to be efficient. We were able to quickly divide into subgroups and had an organized process of what fundamentals needed to be done first, such as market research, defining our target markets, surveys, etc.  Also from our SMG experience, we had a good general sense of how different aspects of a business need to function and work together.”

As for what they learned from competing in both events, the team reports, “We saw the importance of having a strong vision and story, and being able to communicate these effectively. Since we had such little time, we had to make sure we stayed focused and kept our vision simple but intriguing, while keeping the communication and team workflow going.”

“We also found it very important to just have fun,” team members add, “especially if what you are doing is going to take up your whole weekend!”

Learn more about ArtCereal.

Undergraduates Honored by Financial Executives International

October 21st, 2011 in Students, Undergraduate Students

Amit Singh (BSBA '12) and Vladimir Groysman (BSBA '12)

Amit Singh (BSBA '12) and Vladimir Groysman (BSBA '12)

Two Boston University School of Management seniors have been recognized by the Boston Chapter of Financial Executives International (FEI) as 2011 Scholarship winners: Amit Singh and Vladimir Groysman.

FEI is an organization of senior financial managers providing professional development, technical research, and public policy input to managers in the field. All students at local Boston universities who are majoring in accounting, finance, or economics are eligible to compete for the scholarships, which recognize not only outstanding academic performance but also leadership and extracurricular achievement in school and community activities, sports, and work.

Congratulations to Amit and Vladimir on this impressive achievement.