Tuesday, Apr 26, 2022
Team competed against 10 other schools for top place
by Rachel Stengel '14, '20
A group of Rider University students claimed top prize in the Johnson & Johnson National Business Case Competition.
The team prepared a financial analysis and business strategy for expanding Johnson & Johnson’s portfolio of prostate cancer treatments and presented both to a panel of the company's executives.
Rider competed against 10 other institutions: Temple (second place), Saint Joseph's (third place), Villanova, University of Southern California, The College of New Jersey, Lehigh, Ohio State, Rutgers New Brunswick, Rutgers Newark and Hampton.
"I could not be more proud of the hard work, dedication and collegiality that this team of students demonstrated as they applied their business knowledge and demonstrated their professional presentation skills," says Dr. Larry Newman, associate professor of marketing. Newman and Professor William Totaro, adjunct instructor of accounting, served as the team's advisers.
The Rider team consisted of Xander Praski, senior accounting and actuarial science double major, Brittany Lavko, junior finance major, Giuseppe Scordato, sophomore human resource management major, Lindsey Mulrooney, junior management and leadership major, Zachary Fernandez, sophomore finance and marketing double major and David Lee, junior finance and business analytics double major.
Rider's national team is derived from Newman's and Totaro's "Case Analysis and Presentation" course. Students are divided into teams and analyze real-world business opportunities or problems. They then develop and present a set of recommendations to company decision makers. Rider faculty members and administrators provide feedback to the groups in preparation for their presentations to an initial panel of Johnson & Johnson executives.
Three Rider teams presented their plans on March 24. The Johnson & Johnson executives selected one of the teams to compete at the national level.
"It’s hard to believe they are 19 to 21 year olds; they all showcased themselves as seasoned business professionals," says Gabriel Brun '09, senior director of business development neuroscience at Johnson & Johnson, who served as a judge, selecting the national team. He earned his master's in accounting from Rider. "I couldn’t be more proud of being a Bronc."
The course is closely aligned with the goals of Rider's Engaged Learning Program, which require students to complete high-impact engaged learning experiences, such as leadership and mentoring or guided research, to satisfy their graduation requirements. Students who previously competed in the competition assist as mentors to the class. The course prepares students to communicate effectively, work with others in diverse groups and analyze real-world business problems, while applying business and management theories.