Global Supply Chain Competitions Give Students Professional Experience

PROVO, Utah – Mar 06, 2015 – Last month Brigham Young University global supply chain management students got a week off of class — but it was no vacation. Students had a break in schoolwork in order to prepare for the second annual PwC Global Supply Chain Case Competition.

“I love the competition because it’s a really intense week where I get to synthesize everything I’ve learned in class,” says Mariah Hilton, a supply chain junior from Las Vegas. “This year’s competition opened my eyes to different ways of thinking about problems.”

Hilton’s team won first place and $1,000 in the competition, which was held in conjunction with the second annual Nu Skin Global Supply Chain Video Competition. The Marriott School of Management global supply chain program, recently ranked No. 6 in the nation by Gartner, sponsors the two competitions as part of its efforts to prepare students for careers around the world.

“Our students are sought after and we are receiving national attention for our program, but we want to continue to improve,” says Scott Sampson, global supply chain professor.

Sampson and other professors hope that these programs and the video competition in particular will help spread the word about global supply chain, an industry that includes purchasing, storing, and transporting materials and products around the world.

“Everyone’s heard of marketing and accounting, but supply chain is not as well known,” says Scott Webb, assistant teaching professor. “We’re trying to let people know about this great program and the opportunities that come with it.”

The competitions and a new global immersion program, where students will spend two weeks visiting companies in Asia and the Pacific Rim, are part of supply chain’s efforts to give students more professional experience to complement their classroom instruction. The supply chain program is relatively new to the Marriott School but is growing as it gains recognition.

“Even though we’re a small program, we have such strength in the excellence of our students and our faculty, and we expect our newer programs to help us become even better,” Sampson says.

The Marriott School is located at Brigham Young University, the largest privately owned, church-sponsored university in the United States. The school has nationally recognized programs in accounting, business management, entrepreneurship, finance, information systems and public management. The school’s mission is to prepare men and women of faith, character and professional ability for positions of leadership throughout the world. Approximately 3,000 students are enrolled in the Marriott School’s graduate and undergraduate programs.

The winners of the PwC Case Competition (l to r): Eric Fonnesbeck, Christian Bateman, Carson Clark, Mariah Hilton, and Tanner Anderson, with Nathan Palkki, a senior associate at PwC Consulting.
Musana Jewelry cofounder Melissa Sevy with one of the winning teams of the Nu Skin Supply Chain Video Competition (l to r): Jake Hatch, Steven Brown, Kimberly Addis, and Nu Skin employees Jeff Hendersen and Chris Thackery.

Writer: Angela Marler