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A team of UT undergraduate students has won the 2013 Southeast Regional SHRM Business Case Competition sponsored by the Society for Human Resource Management.

The human resource management undergraduates—Rachel Dix and Erin Dyer from Murfreesboro, Tenn.; Justin Collins from Tazewell, Tennessee; Kathryn Bradley from Clarksville, Tennessee; and Adam Rowland from Knoxville—competed against ninety students from more than thirty universities. The team won $2,500 and a chance to be recognized at the national Society of Human Resource Management Student Conference this June in Chicago. They will use the money to pay their way to the national conference.

UT’s winning team was coached by Debbie Mackey, director of the UT Human Resource Management master’s degree program.

“I am so proud of our students,” said Mackey. “They were confident and energetic as they presented to the conference attendees. After the presentation, employers actually searched me out to tell me how impressed they were with our students and that they would gladly hire them.”

Dix, Dyer, Collins, and Rowland will graduate in 2013; Bradley will graduate in 2014.

Each team participating in the competition was given a complex human resources problem that addressed a variety of areas, including employee and labor relations, workforce planning, compensation and benefits, or strategic management.

“This competition revealed the prestige and competitive advantage that the UT human resource management program gives students to succeed and excel,” Mackey said.

The team had four hours to prepare a fifteen-minute PowerPoint presentation and a two-page document that was presented to a panel of human resources professionals from across the Southeast. Each team was evaluated 60 percent on its oral presentation and answering the judges’ questions and 40 percent on its written paper. The top two team finalists presented to everyone attending the conference.

“This is our second first-place finish but the first time that an undergraduate team from UT has won,” said Mackey. “UT’s graduate team won last year.”

Funding for the trip was provided by the Tennessee Valley Human Resource Association, the local professional division of the Society for Human Resource Management and the Tennessee State Society for Human Resource Organization, and the Management Department at UT.

C O N T A C T :

Debbie Mackey (865-974-7014, dmackey@utk.edu)

Cindy Raines (865-974-4359, craines1@utk.edu)