Category: Announcements

Tech Business Students Compete at International Collegiate DECA Conference

Four students stand in front of a DECA backdrop.
Michigan Tech Collegiate DECA members traveled to Baltimore, Maryland, to compete in their first-ever International Career Development Conference. (From left to right: Jaylen Body, Sammy Perrone, Zach Hooper, Lexi Dembroski)

This post was written by Sammy Perrone. In addition to being a first-year marketing student at Michigan Tech, Perrone serves as the Michigan Tech Collegiate DECA public relations officer and marketer.

In April, qualifying members of DECA flew to Baltimore, Maryland, for the International Career Development Conference (ICDC). Huskies were joined by nearly 900 Collegiate DECA members from more than 30 states and 50 chapters, including a chapter from England. Over the three-day conference, students took part in not only their competitive events, but also networking opportunities and the Professional Development Series.

Collegiate DECA is a student organization that prepares emerging leaders in the areas of finance, marketing, hospitality, management and entrepreneurship. Michigan Tech College of Business student competitors included:

  • Jaylen Body (Management and Social Sciences dual major)—top 10 finalist
  • Lexi Dembroski (Accounting with Data Analytics)—top 10 finalist
  • Zach Hooper (Engineering Management and Management Information Systems dual major)
  • Sammy Perrone (Marketing)

The Professional Development Series Workshop at ICDC allowed students to choose four workshops to attend throughout the day. Huskies chose from Personal Branding, Fundraising and Community Outreach, How to Network like a Pro, and Mastering Motivation.

Four students stand on stage backlit with purple lighting.
The conference punctuated a successful first year for Michigan Tech Collegiate DECA students.

 “During the Personal Branding workshop, I analyzed the way I present myself and the way others perceive my personal brand. It was great to reflect on my own brand, meet other students and see how they promote themselves and their own unique qualities,” Perrone says. 

Huskies Compete

The second and third days of the conference consisted of preliminary and final competitions. Jaylen Body (Hotel and Lodging) and Lexi Dembroski (Financial Accounting) were both finalists in their preliminary events, before moving onto the final competition where they received finalist medals on stage and were recognized as top 10 finalists internationally in their events at the awards ceremony.

Dembroski expressed that, “Competing in Financial Accounting allowed me to take concepts I learn in the classroom and apply them to real-world scenarios. As a first-year Michigan Tech business student, I cannot stress enough how valuable of an experience this was. Learning about the core financial statements in class is one thing, but actually getting the opportunity to analyze, produce and present these documents is another.”

“The career preparation provided by Collegiate DECA is unrivaled.”

Lexi Dembroski, Michigan Tech accounting student

Body, club president, adds: “Having thought about the hospitality industry as a potential career, listening to keynote speaker, Apoorva Gandhi, Marriott International’s Senior VP of Multicultural Affairs, and participating in the Hotel and Lodging event, I gained and reinforced an understanding of how business sectors come together to provide a memorable customer experience.”

In addition to competing, Perrone participated in the Sales Challenge sponsored by England Logistics. She was tasked with analyzing a sales case study and preparing a presentation to close the sale during the role-play competition. 

“I went into the Sales Challenge knowing it was a valuable opportunity to learn, challenge myself and gain knowledge. Having an understanding of sales is essential for my future in marketing,” Perrone says.

“I am grateful for the professional development opportunities DECA has provided me through the Career Development Conferences.”

Sammy Perrone, Michigan Tech marketing student

Also a first-time DECA participant, Zach Hooper, comments on what he gained from the conference, “ICDC gave me the opportunity to prepare for my future career in business. I heard from career professionals about their path to success, and how the business world works.”

In their free time, students explored the Inner Harbor of Baltimore—visiting the National Aquarium, eating at local restaurants, spending time outdoors in the sunshine and networking with chapter members from Davenport University.

Four student stand in front of a sign in Baltimore, Maryland
The group celebrated Jaylen Body’s (far left) birthday with dinner and gelato in Baltimore.

Looking Ahead

Body is optimistic about the future of DECA at Michigan Tech, stating, “After a successful startup year, Collegiate DECA will continue striving to bring more opportunities to campus for students to improve their professionalism, communication and leadership.”

Michigan Tech Collegiate DECA thanks its sponsors for helping make the trip possible: the College of Business Dean’s Advisory Council, Inter-Residence Housing Council, and the Dean of Students Office.

About the College of Business

The Michigan Tech College of Business offers undergraduate majors in accounting, business analytics, construction management, economics, engineering management, finance, management, management information systems, and marketing, as well as a general business option. Graduate degrees include the TechMBA®, a Master of Engineering Management, a Master of Science in Accounting, and a Master of Science in Applied Natural Resource Economics.


Huskies Engage at Traverse City during Innovation Week


As part of Michigan Tech’s Grand Traverse region initiative, Huskies will be active in Traverse City this week (May 9-15) during a series of events to celebrate innovation and entrepreneurship.

Husky Innovate students Bayle Golden (master’s in engineering management) and Rourke Sylvain (biomedical engineering) will pitch their ideas during the TCNewTech University Idea Showcase tomorrow (May 12). On Sunday evening they will pitch again, competing for prizes.

College of Business alumnus and local business owner David McBride ‘82 will serve as a judge of the showcase. This event will be livestreamed via TCNewTech’s Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn channels beginning at 6 p.m. Register to attend virtually or in person.

Golden and Sylvain have engaged in Husky Innovate events including the Bob Mark Business Model Pitch Competition and the New Venture Competition (NVC), where both took top prizes. At NVC, Golden won first place in the Social Mission category and received $10,000 pitching “SafeRow,” an innovative wearable device designed to keep children safe when every second counts. Together, Sylvain and Ali Dabas (biomedical engineering) won second place in the High Tech High Growth category, receiving $5,000. Their pitch, “imi (integrated molecular innovations),” is an electrochemical biosensor for T4 detection.

Husky Innovate is a collaboration between the Pavlis Honors College, the Office of Innovation and Commercialization, and the College of Business. 

About the College of Business

The Michigan Tech College of Business offers undergraduate majors in accounting, business analytics, construction management, economics, engineering management, finance, management, management information systems, and marketing, as well as a general business option. Graduate degrees include the TechMBA®, a Master of Engineering Management, a Master of Science in Accounting, and a Master of Science in Applied Natural Resource Economics.


2022 Beta Gamma Sigma Honor Society Inductees

Group photo of Beta Gamma Sigma Honor Society Inductees
2022 Michigan Tech College of Business Beta Gamma Sigma Honor Society Inductees

The Michigan Tech College of Business (COB) inducted 21 Huskies into the Beta Gamma Sigma (BGS) honor society on April 4. Founded in 1913, BGS is the international honor society recognizing business excellence. The top 10% percent of undergraduates and the top 20% of master’s students receive the accolade; it’s the highest recognition a business student anywhere in the world can receive at institutions accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.

View additional photos of the induction ceremony in COB’s Facebook album.

Congratulations to our newest members of the Michigan Tech chapter of Beta Gamma Sigma:

Chris ArbuckleManagement Information SystemsLake Orion, MISenior
Brendon CookManagement Information SystemsHancock, MISenior
Ezra CotterTechMBA®Houghton, MIGraduate student
Jay CzerniakTechMBA®Medford, WIGraduate student
Joseph GherardiAccountingPlainwell, MISenior
Josh GolimbieskiMaster’s in Engineering ManagementHoughton, MIGraduate student
Anthony HarrisTechMBA®South Range, MIGraduate student
Vitor JordaoEngineering ManagementRecife, BrazilSenior
Michael KarowTechMBA®Green Bay, WIGraduate student
Cedric KellerManagement Information SystemsGonten, SwitzerlandJunior
Emily KughnMarketingHorton, MISenior
Benjamin LeinonenManagementAtlantic Mine, MIJunior
John Paul MoodyAccountingHoughton, MIJunior
Hillary ProutAccountingRosebush, MIJunior
Henriette SembEngineering ManagementAsker, NorwayJunior
Jacob StadwickAccountingAuburn Hills, MISenior
Ivy StollerAccountingLowell, MIJunior
Mehdi Torbat EsfahaniMaster’s in Engineering ManagementHoughton, MIGraduate student
Erin VandenbuschTechMBA®Green Bay, WIGraduate student
Jaxon VerhoffMarketingMenasha, WIJunior
Adam WitkowskiEconomicsVictor, NYJunior

About the College of Business

The Michigan Tech College of Business offers undergraduate majors in accounting, construction management, economics, engineering management, finance, management, management information systems, and marketing, as well as a general business option. Graduate degrees include the TechMBA®, a Master of Engineering Management, a Master of Science in Accounting, and a Master of Science in Applied Natural Resource Economics.


Business Huskies Win at CMU’s 10th Annual New Venture Challenge

Bayle Golden holding check with other individuals at New Venture Challenge Competition
Michigan Tech teams brought home $21K in prizes for their innovative ideas.

Central Michigan University (CMU) and Michigan Tech have collaborated for a decade to offer Michigan Tech students a chance to compete in CMU’s New Venture Challenge (NVC). This showcase event provides an opportunity for students at both universities to present their businesses and network with prospective investors, mentors and partners. Student participants compete for a total of $60,000 in prizes and in-kind services.

On April 22, four Michigan Tech teams—three from the College of Business—pitched their ideas and businesses in person on CMU’s campus in Mount Pleasant. Students had an opportunity to compete in either the two-minute pitch competition or the seven-minute business model competition, as well as a gallery competition where teams had tables with individual displays and took questions from attendees.

New Venture Challenge winners from the College of Business are as follows:

Two-Minute Pitch Competition

Jakob Christiansen at the New Venture Challenge Competition
Michigan Tech construction management student Jakob Christiansen delivers his two-minute pitch for his new supply chain e-commerce platform, ProBoard.
  • Jakob Christiansen (construction management) won first place and received $4,000. Christiansen pitched “ProBoard,” an e-commerce platform to solve issues in the construction material supply chain.

Seven-Minute Pitch Competition

  • Bayle Golden (master’s in engineering management) won first place in the Social Mission category and received $10,000. Golden pitched “SafeRow,” an innovative wearable device designed to keep children safe when every second counts.
  • Jordan Craven (management information systems) won third place in the High Tech High Growth category and received $2,000. Craven pitched “Tall and Small Designs,” a technology company that provides software to online clothing retailers

“Your ideas have the potential to change the world.”

Lisa Casper, Michigan Tech Husky Innovate Program Manager

In preparing for the New Venture Challenge, Michigan Tech students participated in Husky Innovate workshops and review sessions. They also benefited from resources and expertise available within MTEC SmartZone, the local state-funded technology business incubator, and the Upper Peninsula Regional Small Business Development Center, which is hosted by Michigan Tech’s Office of Innovation and Commercialization in collaboration with the College of Business. Student mentors and sponsors include Pavlis Honors College, Office of Innovation and Commercialization, College of Business, College of Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, and Civil Engineering.

Golden, winner in the Social Mission category, has formed a Limited Liability Company (LLC) with her earnings, and will
begin production to segue into a full launch. In addition, on Thursday, May 12, as part of Northern Michigan Startup Week in Traverse City, the Michigan Tech graduate student will pitch to compete for a cash prize and startup resources amongst student-entrepreneurs from five other Michigan universities during the University Idea Showcase, hosted by TCNewTech in partnership with the Michigan Tech College of Business. Alumnus and local business owner, David McBride ‘82, will serve as a judge of the showcase.

“I am so thankful for the mentorship and support I have received from Michigan Tech for this venture. I look forward to being yet another success story from Tech!”

Bayle Golden, Michigan Tech Master’s in Engineering Management Student
Michigan Tech management information systems student Jordan Craven pitched “Tall and Small Designs,” a new kind of software for retailers who sell clothes online

About the College of Business

The Michigan Tech College of Business offers undergraduate majors in accounting, construction management, economics, engineering management, finance, management, management information systems, and marketing, as well as a general business option. Graduate degrees include the TechMBA®, a Master of Engineering Management, a Master of Science in Accounting, and a Master of Science in Applied Natural Resource Economics.


Finance Club Inaugural Investment Competition Concludes, Mattila Takes First


During spring semester, the Michigan Tech Finance Club hosted a 10-week stock competition open to all College of Business (COB) majors and minors. Each of the 29 participants received $100,000 in virtual dollars to use on the Investopedia simulator. At the conclusion of trading on April 12, the top three winning portfolios received cash prizes from the COB Dean’s Office. 

Madison Mattila
Madison Mattila, accounting with analytics major

First place $500—Madison Mattila

“I really enjoyed the competition! It was fun to compete against classmates. It also was valuable to spend time watching the market and using the simulator. I’ve been working on a strategy for a while, which I’ve yet to perfect, so I don’t want to spread too much about it right now.”

Second place $300—James Zuzelski

James Zuzelski
James Zuzelski, economics minor

“This was an amazing experience. It motivated me to try new things. My strategy was to capitalize on medium- to high-risk stocks that were trending due to current and near-future geopolitical factors. Due to the short time frame I went with a high-risk, low-diversity, individual stock portfolio.”

Third place $200—Bill Rautiola

Bill Rautiola
Bill Rautiola, finance major

“I consider myself an experienced trader, having done a fair amount of trading on my own. My strategy for this game was to invest in energy sectors, including oil. I also placed a couple option trades.”

The Finance Club at Michigan Tech, advised by Xin Li and supported by the Undergraduate Student Government and the COB, promotes the interest in and knowledge of the field of finance. Members have access to career development opportunities, guidance from Applied Portfolio Management Program (APMP) members, and resources within the APMP Lab. In addition, club members take annual trips to visit mutual funds, the Federal Reserve, investment firms, and the futures and options exchange market in the Midwest.

Assistant Professor Xin Li
Xin Li, assistant professor of finance

Club President Elisabeth Mattson said plans are in place to hold the competition next year and interested participants can connect with incoming President Kevin Hoefer (kdhoefer@mtu.edu) for more information.

“The Finance Club Stock Competition allowed students across the College of Business to try out new investing strategies in a low-risk environment, while competing with their peers.

The winners had different strategies and were able to share knowledge and skills with participants, many of whom are excited to try again next year.”

Elisabeth Mattson, 2021-22 Michigan Tech Finance Club President

About the College of Business

The Michigan Tech College of Business offers undergraduate majors in accounting, construction management, economics, engineering management, finance, management, management information systems, and marketing, as well as a general business option. Graduate degrees include the TechMBA®, a Master of Engineering Management, a Master of Science in Accounting, and a Master of Science in Applied Natural Resource Economics.