In spring 2022, 24 companies across industries engaged teams of MBA and undergraduate students at UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School to solve a business challenge.
The students in STAR – Student Teams Achieving Results participated in this hand-on learning experience, guided by an experienced faculty advisor. Many participating companies started implementing the teams’ data-driven recommendations immediately after the students’ final presentations.
Chris Little (BSBA ’94), vice president for brand management with Dentsply Sirona, a dental solutions company, appreciated the fresh perspective and innovative ideas his STAR team offered. The students addressed a marketing issue that arose in today’s environment changed by the pandemic.
Little and his colleagues took a very collaborative approach to working with the students and enjoyed the regular in-person and online meetings to receive updates and brainstorm. “These six students are superstars,” he says. “Their data and recommendations were robust and credible, and we started implementing them before the STAR engagement ended. We are already seeing an increase in customer engagement and revenue with tangible business results.”
Dentsply was so impressed with the STAR team’s work that they invited the students to participate in the company’s annual conference for dental professionals in Las Vegas this fall.
Chelsey Harshman (BSBA ’12), NA delivery brand director at Procter & Gamble (P&G), was equally excited about her collaboration with her STAR team. The first-ever all-female student team in the history of STAR researched and provided actionable insights into how P&G can best reach younger generations.
The team created customer journeys and presented their findings and plan for next steps in an executive level presentation to a larger group of senior P&G representatives. A vice president called it the “best run student program I have ever seen” and, on the spot, provided Harshman and her unit with substantial funds to immediately implement the recommendations. The fact that the VP offered each of the six students to interview with her added to the overall success of the team.
STAR is open to a variety of corporations and is not limited to UNC Kenan-Flagler alumni partners. STAR teams have addressed real business issues for over 17 years and provided actionable solutions to challenges in domestic and global marketing, strategy, innovation, sustainability, energy, operations and HR among others.
If you are interested in learning more about how a STAR team can address your business issue, please register for one of these two virtual information sessions or write to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Aug. 24: Register here.
Aug. 30: Register here.