November 11, 2019


WASHINGTON, D.C.—Graduate students from Rice University’s Jones Graduate School of Business are the winners of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s fourth annual MBA Case Competition. This year’s case challenged teams of graduate students to think deeply about what businesses bring to a community and the significant impact when a company comes into town or moves out.

Eighty-five teams from 44 business schools across the country responded to the Foundation’s call to examine the crucial role of business in society. The group from Rice University’s Jones Graduate School of Business was one of three teams selected to present its solution at a final competition in Washington, D.C. They competed against teams from University of California, Irvine’s Paul Merage School of Business and Michigan State University’s Broad College of Business.

The students from Rice University’s Jones Graduate School of Business impressed the judges with a proposal to convince city leaders to provide an incentive package robust enough for the fictional Shanklin Corporation to keep its headquarters located in the community. Its members include Zack Barth of Houston, TX; Kelly DeMoya of Houston, TX; and Syed Ishtiaq from Karachi, Pakistan.

“Thank you to all of our finalists for demonstrating their vision for the powerful role businesses play in helping solve problems and serve communities,” U.S. Chamber Foundation president Carolyn Cawley said. “These are the future leaders of business who will support growth, create jobs, and drive innovation tomorrow and into the future, and the future is bright.”

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s MBA Case Competition was held in partnership with FedEx Freight. The competition aims to empower future business leaders and to highlight how businesses play a positive, critical role in communities around the world.

“We were excited to work with the Chamber Foundation again for the MBA Case Competition and continue to support their efforts to educate the public about businesses and communities” said John Smith, FedEx Freight President and CEO. “Congratulations to all the finalists and to the students from Rice University for their winning presentation.”

The judges for this year’s competition were: David Hirschmann, executive vice president of the U.S. Chamber and a member of the Foundation’s advisory board; Tracci Schultz, senior vice president of strategic planning, engineering, and operational solutions for FedEx Freight; Jeff Greer, senior vice president of human resources for FedEx Freight; and Paul Argenti, professor of corporate communication at The Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College.

For more information on the competition, go here.

About U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation is dedicated to strengthening America’s long-term competitiveness. We educate the public on the conditions necessary for business and communities to thrive, how business positively impacts communities, and emerging issues and creative solutions that will shape the future.