ELI Alumni Win 2021 Lerner MBA Case Competition!

Article by Leah Davidson | March 31, 2021

Congratulations to ELI Graduate CAP graduates Umida Ruzybayeva and Youngin Kim for winning the 2021 Carol A. Ammon Case Competition!  

This competition gives UD business graduate student teams the opportunity to create and present strategic recommendations for a real-world situation. This year saw the competition shift to a virtual event, but that didn’t stop teams from presenting excellent ideas. 

In the first round, teams presented their recommendations to judges, who are alumni of the University of Delaware’s Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics MBA program. The top three teams move on to the final round. This competition aims to enhance the students’ analytical and presentation skills and improve their business vocabulary. 

It was a close competition, but in the end, the team called “The Queen’s Gambit” won! This team included ELI Graduate Conditional Admissions Program (Graduate CAP) graduates Youngin Kim and Umida Ruzybayeva, along with Muhammad Fahim Alam, all three international students.  

Umida Ruzybayeva

Umida Ruzybayeva, ELI Grad CAP Graduate

When asked about her experience in the case competition, Ruzybayeva said, “During preparing our presentation, I recalled the experience of doing projects in Cohort classes in ELI. Time for preparation and presentation was limited. We had only two days to study a case of 39 pages, create a professional presentation, record our audio narration.”

Ruzybayeva went on to mention,I am sure we could do this only because of extensive practical experience preparing various projects obtained in Cohort classes at the ELI. We understood the process and were focused on the result. I am grateful that while studying at the Grad CAP program, we were taught not only the language and improved academic skills but also prepared for the real conditions of studying life in a graduate school.” 

Our Graduate CAP is for international students who want to pursue a graduate (master’s or doctorate) degree–but who need to improve their English and research-readiness skills first. Through Graduate CAP, future graduate students can develop their Academic English communication skills and the advanced research, discipline-specific writing, and presentation skills needed to be successful at the graduate level. 

Youngin Kim

Youngin Kim, ELI Grad CAP Graduate

“At the final presentation, our team had some unexpected technical problems but we were truly satisfied with the fact that we completed it,” said Kim. 

“However, our team got to remain the final sole team at the award announcement. The moment that our team was about to be called for the first prize and Umida texted on the group chat ‘I cannot believe it’ is unforgettable.” 

ELI Director Dr. Scott Stevens was proud to have ELI students win the competition this year, saying, “Congrats to all the ELI faculty and tutors who taught and supported Umida and Youngin along their journey of perfecting their ESL skills.”  

Stevens went on to give a special thank you to ELI Professor Leslie Criston, “whose Advanced Business Case Studies class has been brilliantly effective in preparing our students for the linguistic and academic rigor of their MBA program.” 


2021 Carol A. Ammon Case Competition | Lerner (udel.edu) By Dena Hillison • March 30, 2021

Carol A. Ammon Case Competition | Lerner | University of Delaware (udel.edu)

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