Bringing the World to Marshall

Cisco Hosts 13th Annual Global Consulting Challenge at USC Marshall

March 23, 2015

Nine teams from leading business schools around the world converged at the USC Marshall School of Business for the annual Global Consulting Challenge, March 5-6 at USC’s University Park Campus.

Cisco Systems sponsored the event.

"This was our first time participating in this challenge, and it was worth every minute," said Frank Calderoni, executive adviser, Cisco Systems. "The caliber of the students along with their impressive solutions were exceptional. We were proud to sponsor this event as it demonstrated an innovative way to solve real life global business solutions with especially smart students."

MBA teams gave three presentations to executive and senior leadership from Cisco, Creative Artists Agency, Six Degrees Group, Electronic Arts, Warner Bros, AT&T, EY, KMPG, Deloitte, Capgemini, A.T. Kearny, PwC, IBM and Slalom Consulting. Each judging panel selected a winner as well as the overall winner.

“It is a tremendous honor to play host to so many prominent businesses and global business schools,” said Fernando Zapatero, vice dean of graduate programs, holder of the Robert G. Kirby Chair in Behavioral Finance and professor of finance and business economics at Marshall. “It is a global forum that befits Marshall’s reputation as a leader in global business education.”

The results were truly international in scope. Copenhagen Business School won the Overall Award. Montreal-based Desautels Faculty School of Management (of McGill University) won the Consulting Award, and the Company Award went to the HKUST Business School (of the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology).

The USC Marshall team, made up of first year MBAs Shane Gallas, Nicholas Lin, Vignesh Ramakrishnan, Ying Tao and Ryan Kuo, won the Industry Award.

“This is always one of the most exciting events of the year,” said Lori A. Itagaki MBA ’15, vice president of the Marshall Consulting & Strategy Club. “Everyone puts in a great deal of focus and energy, and I think everyone also comes away much sharper for the experience.”

The event, now in its 13th year, is also a recruiting opportunity for MBA students, who submit their bios and resumes when applying to be part of a participating team.