UOG School of Business secures second place in global business competition

UOG School of Business secures second place in global business competition

UOG School of Business secures second place in global business competition


SBPA team at IACBE

(From left) Dr. Maria Teresa O’Brien, Associate Professor of Marketing at the University of Guam and the team’s coach; UOG Business Administration major Jonathan Pablo; Claudia Recchi, CEO of ClassPulse; and UOG Business Administration majors Edward Dela Cruz, Flori Anne Dela Cruz and Francis Valencia.


A team from the University of Guam School of Business & Public Administration took second place in an international case-study competition on business held April 17 to 20 in New Orleans.

The competition — the Student Case-Study Competition — was part of the annual meeting of members of the International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE). UOG’s School of Business, a member of IACBE, competed against 10 other teams from across the country and Europe, securing second place overall as well as first place in a separate undergraduate category. 

It was a first for UOG to attend.

“We came in not knowing what to expect. We came in as an underdog,” said Francis Valencia, a member of UOG’s team. “We weren’t hoping for anything, but in the end, we came out strong.”

SBPA team wins at IACBEIn addition to Valencia, the UOG team consisted of fellow Bachelor of Business Administration majors Jonathan Pablo, Edward Dela Cruz, Flori Anne Dela Cruz, and their coach, Dr. Maria Teresa O’Brien, an Associate Professor of Marketing in the SBPA. The students’ concentrations are in either marketing or finance and economics.

The first challenge was given to the team a month ahead of the event.

“The students were required to take a living case — an ongoing business — and attempt to solve a problem that they have,” O’Brien said.

They had to analyze the business and its environment, identify key issues, and offer solutions. Then they had to analyze those solutions, pick the best one, and develop an implementation plan.

A second challenge, presented to the teams at the competition, involved identifying and analyzing a business ethics case. The teams had four hours to deliberate before delivering a presentation.

The hypothetical case assigned to UOG’s team dealt with hacking and IT security issues.

“We were immersed in a competitive business environment,” Edward Dela Cruz said. “We had to act fast, play on each other’s skills.”

Pablo agreed that their teamwork was a crucial component of their success in the competition as well as the level of education the students have received at UOG.

“This is a strong testament to the education that we are receiving here, the caliber of our professors, the caliber of the students that are involved, and their motivations and abilities to compete on a global scale,” he said.

Other winners of the competition included St. Thomas Aquinas College in New York in third place and a team of graduate students from Cologne Business School in Cologne, Germany, in first place.