Three Notre Dame MBA students from the Mendoza College of Business traveled to Cornell University in November 2016 to participate in the Cornell MBA Stock Pitch Challenge, sponsored by the Johnson College of Business. Alongside 11 other graduate schools, including the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and Dartmouth College Tuck School of Business, the Mendoza team demonstrated its skill in stock-picking in front of a panel of judges.
Jan-e-Alam (MBA ’18), Michael Driscoll (MBA ’18) and Gabriel Albuquerque (MBA ’18) represented Mendoza during the competition, putting their research, analytical, and financial modeling skills to the test. The competition emphasized working effectively as a team and learning to perform during intense situations. As Albuquerque described, “It was great to be put under pressure to come up with a presentation in less than 12 hours and then pitch it to a team of experienced professionals,
“I saw that the technical expertise is important, but that alone would take you nowhere if you can’t identify the strengths and weaknesses of every individual on your team and put those characteristics to work in a way that is effective.”
Each team was assigned to a common stock and two industry stocks the morning before leaving for New York. Within 12 hours, students decided whether to buy, hold, or sell the common stock. In addition, the team had to pick a company within each assigned industry to be either a buy, hold, or sell candidate. After turning in a pitch that explained their recommendations, the teams flew to New York to present their common stock decision and one assigned industry stock decision in front of a panel of judges. Each pitch lasted for 15 minutes, with the last five minutes devoted to questions from the judges. After the judges finished evaluating the pitches, the two teams with the best scores from each preliminary round moved on to the final round the following day.
Jan-e-Alam called the competition her greatest learning opportunity in her MBA experience. , “I personally liked the opportunity to network with a few of the top investment firms in the country the most. It is also an amazing opportunity to network and learn from students from other schools and how investment management academies/clubs work in their schools. I highly recommend it to any student interested in a career in the investment industry.”