March 11, 2013

Winning the First Annual SUNY Plattsburgh Free Enterprise Olympics

Hi everyone! This week is our spring break at SMC. I'm just chilling at home for the week, catching up on some work, applying to more internships, and seeing my friends and family.

So a couple weeks ago I mentioned that I had won a speech contest at Saint Mike's on the subject "Free Enterprise & Entrepreneurship: The Formula for a Stronger Economy." The speech contest was part of a larger competition put on by SUNY Plattsburgh. As the speech contest winner, I got to join the SMC team, comprised of three senior business students, to go to SUNY Plattsburgh on Friday, March 1st. At SUNY Plattsburgh I participated in the speech contest finals as well as a a team creativity and innovation competition between eight schools.

The team! Tom Fergus, Michelle McGuinness, myself, & Patrick McFetridge

On Friday I had to skip two of my classes, but my professors were understanding and were excited for me. The day started fairly early, with the business department head, Robert Letovsky, picking us up at 8:00 AM. We then drove to Plattsburgh and I got to take the Plattsburgh ferry for the first time. We arrived at SUNY Plattsburgh around 9:30 AM to check in and grab some breakfast. At 10:00 AM we heard some introductions from two of the deans and from the director of the competition, then the speech finals started at about 10:30 AM.
For the speech contest I went 6 out of 8 which gave me a bit of time before my speech to sit around and get nervous. Over all, however, I did a good job with my speech. After the speeches we were assigned the case, which was to create a new product for a company called Muller's Smart Carts. The company specializes in these very heavy duty, easy to use wheelbarrows. Every team was assigned a a conference room to work in and we got about an hour in the morning to work on the case.

Presenting our new product to the judges

At 12:30 PM we got lunch then went back to work on the case from 1:30 PM until 4:00 PM. At that time we presented our new product to a group of judges, including the CEO of Muller's Smart Carts. We went 2 out of 8 so we got to watch most of the presentations. After presentations we had an hour break while the judges deliberated, then had dinner before finding out the winners.

Having dinner with the CEO of Muller's Smart Carts

Now the exciting news - we won first in the team contest and I won third in the speech contest! I had a great day, and I think I learned a lot. I was so excited to have won and I was proud of our team! It was such a fun experience and I hope I get to be a part of it again.

The speech contest winners

After winning the team contest with the CEO of Muller's Smart Carts
and the SMC department head

I'll be relaxing now for the rest of the week, but if you have any questions feel free to email me!

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