December 21, 2017
Global Business Perspectives (GBP), the class taken by first-year students across all majors in the Sigmund Weis School of Business, has become a rigorous academic and unique alumni-mentoring exercise.
This year, more than 40 teams of students evaluated Bed Bath & Beyond, presenting their ideas for how the business could expand. The presentations are a unique opportunity for first-year business students to conduct in-depth market research and present their ideas to panels of business executives for feedback.
"One key advantage of GBP is the fact that students complete a major consulting project during their first semester," said Matthew Rousu, interim dean of the Sigmund Weis School of Business. "Doing this in their first semester of college helps provide context to many of the concepts they learn in other business classes."
"Most programs that do something like this do it at the junior and/or senior level," added James Pomykalski, associate professor of information systems at Susquehanna.
Mariah Guiswite, an accounting major from Jersey Shore, Pa., presented three recommendations with her team: increase online advertising through online coupons and social media, offer an online room customization service and enter the Argentina market.
"Studies show that younger generations want to customize their products. We felt offering an online customization service would create greater brand awareness for Bed Bath & Beyond," Guiswite said. "And because of the welcoming economy and premier business destinations, we felt Argentina would be a great place to establish their international presence."
This year's event brought several parent-child alumni judging teams, including Rory '82 and Teague '13 Emery.
"When you are a business major you think of three things—GO London, an internship and Global Business Perspectives," said Teague, an associate at JPMorgan Chase & Co., New York City. "This sets the tone for your next four years."
Teague's father, Rory, chief financial officer and chief operating officer at Savor Street Foods, Inc., Reading, Pa., enjoys mentoring the next generation of business leaders.
"I really enjoy seeing how young people are being educated in business and how they perceive business," Rory said. "I always come away feeling invigorated."