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Team Kellogg’s takes home $1K in business competition

Coursework , Event Recaps Stories | Jan 26, 2012 |

The winning Kellogg’s team wows the judges with their plan to change the cereals’ image from sugary to healthful.

Proving the adage that hard work leads to great reward, five Gabelli students representing the Kellogg’s corporation took home top honors — and $1,000 — this past Tuesday in the integrated business core’s first business presentation competition.

What will benefit these students far longer than the cash, however, is the remarkable hands-on business experience they derived from a semester-long effort to research a specific company, identify a serious marketing challenge facing it, develop a solution to that problem that no one else had come up with before, and present their findings — in person — to a panel of professors, industry judges or both.

There are few better approximations of a boardroom.

Every sophomore enrolled in the new core participated in this challenge, working in teams of four or five in their required integrated project course. But the teams whose ideas and presentations Gabelli professors deemed the best earned an additional opportunity. These six groups presented their work to professional judges on January 24 in the R Bowl, a formal business presentation competition designed to identify the best work among the Class of 2014.

Here are just a few of the insightful ideas that Gabelli sophomores presented:

  • The winning team, which studied Kellogg’s, proposed an advertising campaign to change public perception and increase awareness of its newly healthy cereals, tied to a national “field day” competition for schoolchildren to encourage smart food choices and exercise.
  • Team Gannett said the media giant should save its ailing revenues, quashed by the decline of print publications, by launching a phone app called Vana — essentially a version of the iPhone’s personal assistant-app Siri geared specifically for news.
  • Students who researched McCormick pointed up ways for the nation’s dominant spice company to move beyond its focus on older customers and attract the 16-to-25-year-old demographic, using better packaging and a robust campus-to-campus promotional effort.
  • Both teams representing Campbell’s suggested that the company capitalize on its V8 juice brand to capture new markets: one pitched a product called V8 sport, and the other a health-conscious V8 version of apple juice.
  • The Coach team recommended that the company buy out the waning Talbots store chain and use the acquisition to build its share of the luxury market.

The scene in Keating 3rd during the presentations.

Professors Travis Russ and Meghann Drury, who organized and oversaw the R Bowl competition — and taught some of the integrated project sections themselves — were extremely proud of the students’ performances.

“These students had presented and revised their presentations three times by this point,” said Professor Drury, who also acted as the business communication faculty adviser to the winning Kellogg’s team. “Each time, they incorporated feedback, so they not only learn how to present effectively, but they learn how to accept and incorporate constructive criticism. Both of these skills will make them highly competitive for top internship and full-time job opportunities.”

Click below to watch the R Bowl presentation made by the Kellogg’s squad. Congratulations to Troy CoonradJennifer Amoroso, Brian DawesHarry Clarke and Roxanne Derrington on their win!


Photographs courtesy of Meghann Drury. Video courtesy of Jeffrey Haynes and Frandy Medina.

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