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Student Bragging Rights: Scholars, Honorees, and First Place Winners

As the spring semester is winding down, students at the McCombs School of Business are working harder than ever. In this edition of Bragging Rights we recognize a Kuhn Scholar, Ms. Corporate America, Grand Business Challenge winners, ULI Hines competitions winners, Texas Parents award recipients, National IGNITE Challenge champions, McCombs honorees, a finance excellence award winner, R.I.S.E. competition winners, Enactus regional champions, and MIT trading competition winners.

2017 Kuhn Scholar and Powerlifting Champion

Ashley Guzman, BBA '17, is one of 20 students at The University of Texas at Austin who received a Kuhn Scholarship Award and $1,000 stipend. The award is given to first-generation college students or those who come from economically disadvantaged households. The Kuhn Scholarship is part of the IE Pre-Graduate Internship Program, which matches student interns to mentors on campus in order to facilitate deeper learning. The stipend enhances the program by allowing students to travel, do research, and visit potential graduate schools.

In addition, Guzman, who is a member of the UT powerlifting team, came in first place in her weight class at the 2017 USA Powerlifting Collegiate Nationals Competition in San Antonio. The UT women came in third place overall.

Ms. Corporate America

Tenaj FergusonTenaj Ferguson, MBA '17, was crowned Ms. Corporate America 2017. The pageant aims to combine business and beauty, featuring powerful businesswomen and celebrating their success while also raising their confidence and expanding their networks. Ferguson owns her own business selling healthy, frozen foods and is the first winner who is a fellow from the Consortium, an organization aimed at increasing diversity in business schools.

Grand Business Challenge

A team of McCombs students won the 2017 Grand Business Challenge in Digital Health held by Boston University. The team of Karthik Narasimhan, MBA '17; Ben Berg, MBA '17; Daniel Ledeen, MBA '17; and Michael Love, MBA '17, were asked to present a "world changing" idea for health that combined social impact, innovation, and digital technology.

ULI Hines Student Competition

The UT team took top honors at the ULI Hines Student Competition in Chicago. Mason Rathe, MBA '18, was part of a team primarily consisting of architecture graduate students. The competition gives master's students the opportunity to form ideas and devise a comprehensive development plan for an urban area. The team won $50,000 as the first place honorees.

Texas Parents Award Winners

Dana LeDana Le, BBA '17, was honored by the Texas Parents Association as a Mike Wacker Award winner and Bethany Rolan, BHP '17, as an Outstanding Student Award finalist. The Mike Wacker Award is given to students who show perseverance in the face of adversity. The Outstanding Student Award and Outstanding Student Finalists are presented to students who show exceptional talent in academics, leadership, character, and service.

National IGNITE Challenge

Texas IGNITE team accepting awardAlexandra Mulconnery, BHP '19, was part of a team of UT students who won the National IGNITE Challenge hosted by Children's Miracle Network Hospitals. The case competition included four schools: UT Austin, Ohio State University, Vanderbilt University, and the University of Utah.

McCombs Honors

At the annual McCombs Honors Convocation, which recognizes business honors students who stand out among their peers, Bethany Rolan, BHP '17, was given the Rising Star Leadership Award as well as the Conrad Doenges Award. The two awards are reserved for graduating seniors. Rolan demonstrated superb leadership, academics, support for McCombs, and a drive for success. 

Bethany Rolan

In addition, Natalie McDole, BBA '17/MPA '18, was honored with the Excellence in Accounting award, Sarth Raj, BHP '18, was given the Management Excellence Award, and Katie Stephens, BHP '17, was given the Outstanding Supply Chain Management Student Award. Pranay Tamminayana, BHP '20; Genny Li, BHP '19; Uttam Eamani, BHP '19; and Ananya Jha, BHP '18, were all awarded the George Mitchell Business Leadership Award. Madison Gove, BHP '20; Zach Schultz, BHP '17; Katie Stephens, Paige Kimball, BHP '17; Humza Tariq, BHP '17; Neo Nanna, BHP '17; Sean Sellers, BHP '17; and Imelda Resendiz, BHP '16, all were given the BBA Outstanding Service and Leadership Award.

Finance Excellence

Isabelle KerrIsabelle Kerr, MBA '17, won the Ray Nixon Endowed Award for Excellence in Finance. Balancing a position on the Texas Longhorns women's soccer team with her studies, she earned an impressive 3.98 GPA over the course of her time at UT. Her soccer career is nothing to sneeze at either, playing 1,666 out of 1,668 possible minutes during her senior year season as captain of the team.

R.I.S.E-ing to the Occasion

RISE Challenge WinnersA team of four business students took first place at the National Deloitte R.I.S.E. Advisory Case Competition. Of 32 teams in the regional competition, only eight moved onto the national level. The McCombs team included Alex Wang, BBA '20; Vibhav Joopelli, BBA '20; Angela Yu, BBA '19; and Alan Shaw, BBA '20. The team received $8,000 to split among its members. The students’ case solution aimed to optimize a company’s travel expense procedure and advise it as the company expanded into international markets.

Freshman Take First

Texas Enactus GroupA team of mainly freshman from McCombs won first place at the Enactus Regional Competition and will be moving on to the national competition. Ruth Tiller, BBA '17; Esha Dewan, BBA '20; Nicole Sun, BBA '20; Rupasri Shankar, BBA '20; Bryana Cantu, BBA '20; and Moosa Malik, BBA '20, made up the team. Competing teams selected from a number of challenges, presented by partner organizations such as Nature Made and the Coca-Cola Foundation, that required teams to address issues such as increasing opportunities for women through entrepreneurship.

Beating Out the Ivys

Mickey Li, BHP '18, and fellow UT student Rahul Gupta won first place at the MIT Intercollegiate Trading Competition, beating teams from MIT, Stanford, Harvard, and other top universities. Li and Gupta used skills —acquired during stock trading internships and as members of the undergraduate computational finance student organization — in multiple sessions of electronic trading and floor trading. 

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