A team of five Butler University students won the Purdue University Parrish Library Case Competition held on Saturday, November 5, an annual contest that challenges students to use their business research skills to solve a problem for a company.
Sammie Chalmers, Taylor Gillenwater, Nicole Henrich, Karly Krebs, and Allison Wolff beat more than 20 teams from Indiana University and Purdue University in a competition that took place at the Burton Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship on the main campus of Purdue University in West Lafayette.
Business Librarian Teresa Williams organized Butler’s entry into the competition. Williams and Library Associate Andrew Welp, who also is an adjunct librarian supporting Butler’s Lacy School of Business, helped the team to prepare.
As Information Commons students—student employees of the Information Commons, a collaborative program of the Butler Libraries and Center for Academic Technology—the Butler team members receive training in how to find, evaluate, use, and present information. Information Commons and eLearning Librarian Amanda Starkel and Academic Technology Specialist Megan Grady-Rutledge co-manage the Information Commons program and have developed a training program that provides a foundation for 21st century research skills.
Participants in this year’s competition were asked to focus on a real startup, Alexandria Brewing Company of Alexandria, Kentucky. The students were asked to conduct research and provide a market analysis for the company. They were assigned to analyze the craft beer market nationally as well as locally in Ohio/Kentucky/Indiana to provide insights on the target customers, trend analysis, and action plan.
The teams put together PowerPoint presentations and executive summaries. The judges complimented the Butler team for its information and presentation of data, its implementation plan and the way it connected its research to the company’s backstory.
“We are proud of the students and how they applied their Information Commons training and business information literacy skills to succeed in the competition,” Williams said. “When considering the multitude of research resources that are available to IU and Purdue business students, this was a significant achievement, especially given it was Butler’s first year in the competition.”