UB School of Management MBAs Take Top Prize at Pitt Competition

From left, Mark Bortz, MBA ’13; Ryan McGraw, MBA ’13; Michelle Piaia, MBA ’13; and Christopher Maugans, JD/MBA ’13.

Release Date: February 12, 2013 This content is archived.


BUFFALO, N.Y. -- A team of four MBA students in the University at Buffalo School of Management captured first place and a $4,000 prize in a consulting case competition hosted by the University of Pittsburgh’s Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business.

Mark Bortz, MBA ’13, of Commerce, Mich., Christopher Maugans, JD/MBA ’13, of Tonawanda, Ryan McGraw, MBA ’13, of Liverpool, and Michelle Piaia, MBA ’13, of Washingtonville, were the members of the wining team, which bested groups from Penn State, Case Western, Pittsburgh University and Carnegie Mellon.

“We are very proud of this impressive accomplishment by our MBAs,” said Arjang A. Assad, dean of the UB School of Management. “They are truly representative of the sterling quality of our MBA program.”

Competitors analyzed a cross-functional business case about the energy industry and the technological progress, regulation, issues and challenges companies face in the today’s extremely competitive industry. The case tested the teams’ ability to apply knowledge of finance, marketing, operations and human capital concepts to produce actionable, practical recommendations.

Judges for the competition were Theresa Bone, vice president and corporate controller, EQT Corp.; Michael Latsko, vice president, product strategy for nuclear power plant business and project development, Westinghouse Electric Co.; Branden P. Moore, associate, McGuireWoods; and David Ortiz, senior engineering professor, Pardee RAND Graduate School.

The four students on UB’s winning team are members of the Buffalo MBA Consulting Group, a School of Management club and pro bono consulting firm founded in 2010 whose consultants are UB MBA candidates.

Travel and lodging expenses for the UB team were provided through a donation from School of Management alumnus Steven C. Verney ’80, MBA ’81, executive vice president and chief risk officer at Allstate Insurance Co. in Chicago, and a matching grant from Allstate.

The UB School of Management is recognized for its emphasis on real-world learning, community and economic impact, and the global perspective of its faculty, students and alumni. The school has been ranked by Bloomberg Businessweek, the Financial Times, Forbes, U.S. News & World Report and The Wall Street Journal for the quality of its programs and the return on investment it provides its graduates. For more information about the UB School of Management, visit mgt.buffalo.edu.

The University at Buffalo is a premier research-intensive public university, a flagship institution in the State University of New York system and its largest and most comprehensive campus. UB’s more than 28,000 students pursue their academic interests through more than 300 undergraduate, graduate and professional degree programs. Founded in 1846, the University at Buffalo is a member of the Association of American Universities.

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Jacqueline Molik Ghosen
Assistant Dean and Director of Communications
School of Management