JCPenney Cox Case Competition Returns Thanks To MBA Alum

JCPenney Cox Case Competition

Inspired by the opportunities she had as an MBA student, a Southern Methodist University – Cox School of Business MBA alum recently reestablished a connection between the school and her employer, JCPenney.

Libby Magliolo, MBA ’13, currently serves as the Senior Manager of Business Development at JCPenney. As an MBA student at Cox five years ago, Magliolo was given the chance to compete in and ultimately win a JCPenney Case Competition. The competition, however, did not continue as an annual event, and has not taken place at Cox since Magliolo’s win.

Inspired by the opportunity she had been given as a student, Magliolo worked to re-establish the connection between Cox and her employer. Thanks to her work, the JCPenney Case Competition was able to take place at the school this past January, with fifteen teams of full-time, Professional and Fast Track MBAs participating. The teams were asked to present business ideas they had developed after analyzing the company and its current initiatives. The competition was judged by four JCPenney representatives as well as Cox faculty.

Overall, the judges selected three teams—nine students total—as winners. At the end of March, these nine students were given the opportunity to tour the JCPenney headquarters in Plano and present their ideas to top company executives. There were also cash prizes, with the first place team—Cox FTMBA students Sarah Byerley, Stephanie Kirkbride and Blaire Metcalfe—winning $3,000.

According to Magliolo, the Case Competition helps create a strong pipeline of talent from the school to the company, as well as providing invaluable experience for the students. Of her efforts to reestablish the competition, Lisa Tran, the SMU Cox Career Management Center Executive Director, said, “Libby not only convinced her company to sponsor a case competition for MBA students, but also invited our students to present their ideas to a room full of executives. This was an invaluable experience to showcase SMU Cox MBA talent in a setting that allowed the students to combine their classroom learnings with business decisions in a real-world setting.

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