FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, September 02, 2009
Contact: Pat Dickson, Coordinator of Media and Community Relatios 304-746-1971


Marshall University business graduate student member of winning team in research project competition of Beta Alpha Psi

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – A Marshall University student in the Lewis College of Business was a member of a four-person team that recently took first place in a research project competition at the annual national meeting of Beta Alpha Psi, an honorary organization for financial information students and professionals.

Max Billmyer, a graduate student from Martinsburg, W.Va., was one of only 60 students who were selected internationally to take part in the competition, “Project Run With It,” which was held in New York City in August. Tyler Rowland, president of the Marshall chapter, was selected to serve on a separate panel.

Fifteen panels were directed to conduct research and then make recommendations for three nonprofit organizations in the New York City area which were seeking help in solving financial problems. Five teams were assigned to each agency.

Each member of the first-place team received $1,000 which will go to his or her chapter.

“Our team was assigned to the Arts and Business Council of New York (ABCNY). We spent a full day doing research and then made a presentation to a panel of judges,” Billmyer said.  “Since this was on the national level, winning the award was great exposure for not only the Lewis College of Business but for Marshall as well.”

Among other things, the ABCNY was looking for ways to save money on their Web site while making it more user friendly and conducive to drawing in new business sponsors.  Billmyer’s team concentrated on coming up with recommendations that would increase ABCNY’s membership, which was their overall goal, while addressing other concerns.

“It was a good opportunity to interact with others who were from all parts of the country,” Billmyer said.  “The research we did was all about helping nonprofit groups.  It was a great learning opportunity.”

Marshall faculty member Amanda Thompson-Abbot, who accompanied the group to the conference, said, “Beta Alpha Psi is a first-class professional organization and I am honored to be one of their faculty advisors. I am proud of the students’ accomplishments in New York at the national meeting. They represented Marshall University and the Lewis College of Business well and I feel they will continue to achieve great success in their future professional careers.  With this in mind, I recommend that all students who are eligible to join become members, because this organization can ultimately take them from students to polished professionals.”

This year was Marshall’s first to participate in “Project Run With It.”

More than 1,200 students from 235 schools were represented at the conference, which included representatives from Australia and New Zealand.  In addition to Billmyer, Rowland and Thompson-Abbott, LCOB student Alex Kovarik also attended from Marshall.

Beta Alpha Psi is an honorary organization that recognizes students in the fields of accounting, finance and information systems.  Students must have a high GPA to get in, which they must maintain, and they must do 40 hours of professional development and 40 hours of community service each year to remain members in good standing.  Only schools which are accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) are eligible to have chapters.

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Photo: Marshall University representatives (from left) Max Billmyer, Amanda Thompson-Abbott, Tyler Rowland and Alex Kovarik attended the Beta Alpha Psi annual national meeting recently.



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