Bauer Students Place First in National Selling CompetitionBauer Students Place First in National Selling Competition Team Praised for “Phenomenal” Sales Presentation

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A four-member team of students from the C. T. Bauer College of Business perfected its sales pitch and snagged a first-place victory in a national selling competition held at Indiana University on Sept. 28.

Marketing senior Charlsie Anderson, accounting senior Jose Rodriguez, marketing senior Kurt Schoeffler and MBA candidate Alim Hirani represented the Program for Excellence in Selling (PES) at Bauer College in the inaugural “Can’t Beat the Experience” team sales contest. They faced competition in teams from the “Big 10” schools, including Michigan State University, Ohio State University and the University of Wisconsin, as well as other nationally known universities with selling programs.

The Bauer students wowed a panel of corporate executives and judges, who acted as the buying team from a fictitious national grocery store chain that was debating whether or not to introduce a line of wine into locations across the country. Anderson, Rodriguez, Schoeffler and Hirani had a week to prepare a 15-minute presentation to successfully convince the judges.

“We were so impressed with the professional manner in which the team gave their presentation as well as the obvious amount of preparation that went into it,” said judge Vito Maurici. “They were very prepared and organized. That is what set them apart among all of the competitors.”

Likewise, Michael Ahearne, an associate professor and executive director of the Sales Excellence Institute at Bauer College, was extremely pleased by the team’s performance. “They were absolutely phenomenal,” he said. “It was the best presentation I have ever seen at a sales competition.”

“With our position as a leader in sales education in the U.S., we entered this competition with high expectations for our performance,” Ahearne added. “This victory further establishes our position as the premier sales institute in the United States.”

Team member Schoeffler agreed, noting that the group’s training from the sales program at Bauer gave them an edge over their competitors. “Our victory can be directly attributed to the skills we have learned in PES,” he said. “It would not have been possible to win this competition on talent alone. We have been groomed by stellar faculty for several semesters now in team selling, and it paid off big time at this competition.”

His teammates echoed that praise for the program with Rodriguez adding that he was honored just to be asked to be part of the team representing the university at the competition. “Any opportunity to represent PES and to support the program that has done so much for me personally is an honor,” Rodriguez said. “During my career here at the University of Houston, I’ve never been more proud than to hear my university’s name as the national champions.”

About the University of Houston
The University of Houston, Texas’ premier metropolitan research and teaching institution is home to more than 40 research centers and institutes and sponsors more than 300 partnerships with corporate, civic and governmental entities. UH, the most diverse research university in the country, stands at the forefront of education, research and service with more than 35,000 students.

About the C. T. Bauer College of Business
The C. T. Bauer College of Business has been in operation for more than 60 years at the University of Houston main campus. Through its five academic departments, the college offers a full-range of undergraduate, masters and doctoral degrees in business. The Bauer College is fully accredited by the AACSB International – the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. In August 2000, Houston business leader and philanthropist Charles T. (Ted) Bauer endowed the College of Business with a $40 million gift. In recognition of his generosity, the college was renamed the C. T. Bauer College of Business.

About the Program for Excellence in Selling (PES)
The Program for Excellence in Selling is a nationally recognized selling program that teaches students the skills needed to effectively sell products and services. Focusing primarily on business-to-business sales, the PES program gives students the opportunity to gain real world sales experience while still in an educational environment.

For more information about UH visit the university’s ‘Newsroom’ at www.uh.edu/admin/media/newsroom.

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