Business Students Post 'Top 20' Performance in Global Simulation

Published 10.08.2005

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Two Pennsylvania College of Technology seniors' recent performance makes them eligible for year-end participation in the Business Strategy Game, an online exercise in which teams run fictitious companies in head-to-head competition with their counterparts from around the world.

The team of Tina L. Brownson, a business administration-management major from Howard, and Dustin S. Eck of Williamsport, enrolled in business administration-banking and finance, finished in the Top 20 internationally in the "Return on Average Equity" category during the third week of the competition.

Their athletic-footwear company's return of 30.8 percent was the 13th-best performance of the week and qualifies them to compete in the Best-Strategy Invitational that runs from Dec. 5-18.

"Quite a feat considering that there are thousands of students competing at this level," said Gerald D. "Chip" Baumgardner, an associate professor of business administration in Penn College's School of Business and Computer Technologies. "The main purpose of the simulation is to allow students to make top-level decisions that will impact the company competing on a global scale."

Baumgardner is the students' instructor in MGT497 (Business Policy and Management), the capstone course required of all business administration, accounting and technology management students during their final year of study at the college. His team's performance was outlined in a letter from Gregory J. Stappenbeck, one of the game's co-authors.

"You should be quite proud of your students for such an excellent performance − a performance that reflects quite well on you and the caliber of instruction that students are receiving in your course," Stappenbeck wrote.

Each Monday, he and his colleagues at BSG-Online compile lists of the prior week's 20 best-performing companies worldwide based on each of four measures: overall score for the current year, earnings per share, return on average equity and stock price.

"The game gives us a firsthand view of running a business," Eck said. "I am a finance major, and I enjoy being able to apply some of the financial instruments that I have learned and actually use them in a business setting."

Just as in the real world, the students' companies compete in a global marketing arena, "selling" branded and private-label athletic footwear in Europe, Africa, North America, the Asia-Pacific region and Latin America. Company co-managers must make decisions relating to plant operations, distribution and warehouse operations, workforce compensation, online sales at the company's Web site, sales and marketing, and finance.

For more information about academic majors in Penn College's School of Business and Computer Technologies, call toll-free (800) 367-9222, send e-mail or visit online .