Tech Team Wins Bank of America Campus Challenge

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A team of Georgia Tech undergraduate students recently won the Bank of America’s 2013 Campus Challenge (a business and technology case competition), beating out 11 other participating schools.

The annual Campus Challenge gives student teams the opportunity to compete for cash prizes, while developing innovative technology solutions relevant to the bank’s customers and clients. This year’s winning idea from Georgia Tech enables the bank to offer customers rewards for managing their finances through a simple budgeting tool.

Each member of the Tech team won $5,000, and Bank of America awarded an additional gift of $50,000 to the university.

The interdisciplinary Tech team, which competed against some graduate student teams at other schools, included business administration majors Sarah Lynn Bowen, Patrick Kelly and Paul Anderson; computer science major Alex Stelea, industrial engineering majors Ethan Smith, Courtney Hall, Misha Desai and Alec Kaye; and mechanical engineering majors Elizabeth Waters and Zac Zachow.

The second place team came from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, while a Duke University team placed third. Other competitors included Carnegie Mellon University, National University of Singapore, and the University of Virginia.

The first round of the Bank of America Campus Challenge competition started on Sept. 17 and consisted of the intra-school competition among a group of 12 universities. The top team from each participating school then moved on to a second round in early October to compete against teams from other schools.

Teams presented their solutions in a five-page submission including a business case, detailed business and technical requirements, architecture platform description and an explanation of benefits. They were also asked to include a five-minute video pitch describing their solution.

Winners were chosen based on creativity, quality of design, commercial potential, functionality and demonstration of understanding of the business and technical requirements. This year’s Challenge questions were focused on data management and new technologies that could improve the bank’s customer rewards and incentive programs.

“Meeting the changing needs of our customers requires diverse thinking and perspectives, so we regularly engage with the larger technology community including students, scholars, start-ups and other leading technology providers to ensure a broad range of expertise drives our decision-making,” says David Reilly, Bank of America Global Technology & Operations (GT&O) Technology Infrastructure executive. “Connecting with these rising stars helps stimulate our thinking, and helps develop the thought-leaders of tomorrow.”

Georgia Tech Scheller College of Business provided publicity, facilities and organizational support for Bank of America and participating students in the Campus Challenge. Participating students Sara Lynn Bowen and Paul Anderson are both Scheller Dean's Scholars.


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