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MTSU psychology students earn top prize in nationa...

MTSU psychology students earn top prize in national HR contest

With an impressive presentation to human resource executives from Fortune 500 companies, five MTSU graduate students captured the highest national honor available for majors in their field and a cash award.

Students in the second year of the MTSU Industrial/Organizational Psychology Program won the Krannert School of Management Human Resources Case Competition Nov. 3 at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana.

MTSU second-year graduate students display the symbol of their $5,000 prize for winning the Krannert School of Management Human Resources Case Competition Nov. 3 at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana. The team members are, from left, Megan Wertheimer, Katelyn Class, Hung Nguyen, Kin Chan and Jacqueline Masso. (Photo submitted)

MTSU second-year graduate students display the symbol of their $5,000 prize for winning the Krannert School of Management Human Resources Case Competition Nov. 3 at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana. The team members are, from left, Megan Wertheimer, Katelyn Class, Hung Nguyen, Kin Chan and Jacqueline Masso. (Photo submitted)

“We are very proud of their hard work and their achievement in winning this national case competition,” said Dr. Rick Moffett, associate director of MTSU’s Center for Organizational and Human Resource Effectiveness and a professor of psychology.

Each team in the competition, which is open to all business-related master’s programs among U.S. universities, had a week in advance to analyze an identical business case, then develop and submit an executive summary and presentation slides.

After the finalists were chosen, each team had 60 minutes to prepare, 20 minutes to present and 10 minutes to answer questions from a panel of human resources experts from Amazon, Dell and General Electric.

MTSU’s team defeated finalists from Brigham Young University, the University of Minnesota, Penn State University, the University of Pittsburgh and Purdue University. Their prize was a $5,000 check to be split among the students.

The team members were Kin Chan of Paya Besar Kedah Lunas, Malaysia; Katelyn Class of Oxford, Ohio; Jacqueline Masso of Peoria, Illinois; Hung Nguyen of Lawrenceville, Georgia; and Megan Wertheimer of Waterford, Michigan.

Dr. Rick Moffett

Dr. Rick Moffett

“The case competition provided our team not only with an opportunity to present to HR executives from Fortune 500 companies but also provided us with the opportunity to learn from each other and grow in our expertise while simultaneously building stronger relationships and memories that are sure to last for years to come,” said Masso.

Added Wertheimer: “We received feedback from one of the judges indicating that we won because we were able to take a complicated project and clearly communicate our solution so that it could be easily understood. I think that this is a testament to the value of I/O psychology and what we have to offer.”

Industrial and organizational psychology, also known as I/O psychology, is an area of scientific study that addresses psychological concepts and principles in the workplace.

It applies evidence-based research in solving organizational issues of all kinds as opposed to relying on anecdotes, hearsay and the latest management trends.

For more information about the program, contact the Center for Organizational and Human Resource Effectiveness at 615-898-5458, email cohre@mtsu.edu or visit www.mtsu.edu/programs/psychology-ma-io.

— Gina K. Logue (gina.logue@mtsu.edu)


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