Whitman School competes in 1st Annual Global Family Enterprise Case Competition


A team of students from the Whitman School of Management at Syracuse University recently competed in the 1st Annual Global Family Enterprise Case Competition (FECC) held January 9-13, 2013 at the University of Vermont. The FECC matched 16 teams of undergraduate and graduate students from family business programs in Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Malaysia, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, the United States and Canada.

The Whitman team, made up of students Max Jones, Porsche Nichols, and Kiven Pierre (all MBA ’13 students), won both of their head-to-head case matchups, but fell short to division and eventual overall competition winner ESADE Business School of Spain.

“Whitman has many students who are from family businesses. Better preparing them for working in—and potentially even taking over—the family business is an important part of their education. Having the students develop strategies and implementation plans that take into consideration the needs of both the business and the family will have a lasting impact on these students’ futures,” says Dr. Alexander McKelvie, assistant professor of entrepreneurship and the Whitman team’s faculty coach.

Whitman’s family business program, situated within the School’s Entrepreneurship and Emerging Enterprises (EEE) department, has seen significant growth recently. The program now offers a course in family business management, a student-run club has sprouted, and alumni have contributed generously to support new learning experiences and internship opportunities for students.

“This really is the beginning of an increased commitment from Whitman to students from family businesses. The success we experienced in Vermont really shows the quality of the entrepreneurship program and its application to businesses with this unique combination of challenges and opportunities,” adds McKelvie.

Consistently ranked as one of the top entrepreneurship programs in the nation, Whitman’s EEE department helps students discover their innate entrepreneurial potential, giving them a set of tools and perspectives to capitalize on that potential and help launch their careers.

Syracuse University is one of the few schools in the nation with a formal academic department devoted to entrepreneurship, and the major components are housed within Whitman. In collaboration with the Falcone Center for Entrepreneurship, the EEE department combines a highly unique set of entrepreneurship courses with a number of extracurricular activities and experiential opportunities to give students the total entrepreneurship experience. For more information, visit whitman.syr.edu/eee.