Georgetown University Case Team Wins Third Place at International Case Competition

March 07, 2005

Cynthia S. Shaw
(202) 687-4080

Georgetown University Case Team Wins Third Place at International Case Competition

For the third consecutive year, Georgetown University's McDonough School of Business undergraduate strategy case team reached the finals of an international case competition. The McDonough School of Business strategy case team placed third out of 24 institutions (including 12 international universities) at the invitation-only 2005 Marshall International Case Competition (MICC), held at The University of Southern California (USC) on February 23-26.

The 2005 MICC featured a case study of Amgen and its integration approach to the 2002 purchase of biotechnology rival, Immunex. Student teams were given 24 hours to research, analyze and develop a set of action plans; develop recommendations; and prepare and make presentations to a panel of judges from biotechnology and other industries, academia and government. The McDonough School of Business strategy case team members were seniors Sean Doran, Mitch Fox, Aaron Sokolik and junior Christopher Satti.

"Our team put in a lot of hard work in preparing for this competition," said Doran, a native of McLean, Va. "Our preparations really paid off in helping us to quickly and effectively devise a strategy for the case. We were proud of our creative and innovative presentation to the judges and were happy with the outcome."

Participating for the first time in the MICC, Georgetown had an impressive showing. The final round pitted Georgetown against strategy case teams from Cornivus University of Budapest, The Ohio State University, Penn State University, The University of Copenhagen, The University of Melbourne, The University of Texas and The University of Washington.

Assistant Professor Jeffrey Macher, faculty advisor for the team said, "As in previous competitions, Georgetown's team showed that it is adept at providing thoughtful strategic recommendations for both the short- and long-term. Their presentation clearly showed strategic thinking and actionable recommendations for Amgen, including retention of key Amgen and Immunex people, rationalization of overlapping product portfolios, and reprioritization of R&D product pipelines."

Macher noted that two days prior to the competition, Mitch Fox replaced regular team member, Cindra Maharaj, who was unable to make the competition due to a recently broken ankle. The actual case competition was the first time that this team had worked together.

"I have nothing but praise for the performance and work ethic of the team, given the adversity it overcame," Macher said. "To finish in third place under such conditions, in its first MICC competition, and against some of the best undergraduate business schools in the world is a testament to the intellectual horsepower of our students and the strength of our undergraduate program."

"I was extremely proud of how well our team did under such intense pressure," said Sokolik, a native of Houston, Texas. "Even though we had never worked together before, our team had the education, training and poise to really shine."

The MSB students were selected to represent the school through a rigorous application process conducted last spring by Associate Professor Willis Emmons. Eight students (two teams of four) worked throughout the fall and spring coaching sessions with Professors Emmons and Macher to prepare for this event and a case competition held in the Fall 2004 semester at the University of Texas.

The 2005 MICC represents the sixth time that the Marshall School and USC have hosted this event. It is considered the largest and most prestigious undergraduate case competition in the country.

About Georgetown's McDonough School of Business
Offering unparalleled access to the world's business, policy and thought leaders, Georgetown University's Robert Emmett McDonough School of Business is seated at one of the nation's most prestigious universities in one of the world's most dynamic and important cities. The school is committed to developing leaders capable of making complex business decisions in a global environment and who are dedicated to serving their companies, society and humanity. The McDonough School's undergraduate, MBA, executive education and International Executive MBA programs provide solid grounding in all the core management disciplines, with an emphasis on the global, ethical and political environment of business. For more information about the McDonough School, visit

About Georgetown University
Georgetown University is the oldest Catholic and Jesuit university in America, founded in 1789 by Archbishop John Carroll. Georgetown today is a major student-centered, international, research university offering respected undergraduate, graduate and professional programs on its three campuses. For more information about Georgetown University, visit