University of Southern California

USC Marshall Team Wins Australian Case Competition
Four Seniors Take Home Trophy from First Pac Rim Real Estate Competition
February 9, 2009 • by News at Marshall

Four senior students from the USC Marshall School of Business earned first place in the Pacific Rim Real Estate Society Property Case Competition at the University of Technology in Sydney, Australia on Jan. 21.

The competition was part of the four-day Pacific Rim Real Estate Society annual conference. The society is a prestigious international organization dedicated to providing a formal focus for property researchers, educators and practitioners in the Pacific-Rim region. The competition, the society’s first, was designed to encourage a greater understanding of the property industry among students and conference delegates from the wider Pacific region.

Marshall's undergraduate real estate program, ranked 7th in the nation by US News and World Report, was the only invitee from the United States after hosting its own International Real Estate Case Competition last April on the USC campus. "Marshall has earned its reputation as the preeminent undergraduate program in real estate on the West Coast and we were asked to come because of our standing," said Robert Bridges, a professor in the real estate program and the team’s coach and faculty advisor. "We prepared them, sent them halfway around the world by themselves and we consider their accomplishment to be remarkable and significant".

Marshall's participation in an international event such as the PPRES case competition is consistent with goals established by the school's popular new dean, James Ellis. He has placed a particular emphasis on affirming and strengthening Marshall’s leadership role in Asia and the Pacific Rim, with the goal of establishing Marshall as an international a repository of academic, technical and business knowledge in support of the next generation of cross-cultural and multinational business endeavors.

USC's James Bohan, Stephen Morita, Dara Rezvanipour, and team captain, Ashley Mahaffey, competed against students from seven top Pac Rim region schools including Bond University, Deakin University, Hong Kong University of Technology, Queensland University, The University of South Australia, and the University of Auckland. Marshall, having faced the University of Auckland in Los Angeles the previous April, knew that their adversaries would be formidable and that they might be at a disadvantage due to the unfamiliar business customs of a foreign setting. They focused their preparation on the topics of international trade, finance, currencies, insurance, legal issues, as well as local customs and ethics.

About the USC Marshall School of Business
Consistently ranked among the nation's premier schools, USC Marshall is internationally recognized for its emphasis on entrepreneurship and innovation, social responsibility and path-breaking research. Located in the heart of Los Angeles, one of the world's leading business centers and the U.S. gateway to the Pacific Rim, Marshall offers its 5,700-plus undergraduate and graduate students a unique world view and impressive global experiential opportunities. With an alumni community spanning 123 countries, USC Marshall students join a worldwide community of thought leaders who are redefining the way business works.