PNC bank hires TU Associate winner
On senior Kristin Riess’s 23rd birthday, she participated in what she called “a life-changing opportunity”—the final round of The Associate competition.
Facing only one other finalist in the last round of the business case competition, Riess won the semester-long competition, receiving a position at PNC bank waiting for her after graduation.
“I was ecstatic,” she said. “I don’t have to job hunt now.”
Runner-up Tina Covelli was the only business management major in the group of eight that began the competition. Every case the groups presented involved marketing skills, she said, so she was grateful to make it to the final round.
“I didn’t think I’d make it out of the first round,” she said. “I got a lot of confidence out of [the competition].”
Riess said toward the beginning of the competition, she was nervous about her presentation skills, but said now they have been strengthened.
“I feel like each week has been a massive improvement and it’s done nothing but help,” she said. “I feel I’m ready to enter the workforce.”
PNC was the last client the group was given. The two finalists’ job was to create a plan to accelerate PNC’s mobile deposit and ATM deposit capabilities by increasing usage rates. Laura Gamble, the regional president of greater Maryland PNC Bank, said that Riess came across with a flawless presentation.
“She focused on the two specific demographics and had a different strategy for each,” Gamble said.
But both teams did excellent work, Gamble said.
“There was not one person that did not appear to belong in the program,” she said.
College of Business and Economics Dean Shohreh Kaynama presented scholarships for $500 and $1,000 to previous members of the program that did not win the competition. The original group of students in the program were Taylor Graham, Erin McGall, Jenifer Rawlings, Katie Sampayo, Alex Watts, and Ashley Wheeler.
Kaynama said the end of the competition is bittersweet after spending weeks with such talented students.
“The results were fabulous,” Kaynama said. “They made me such a proud Dean.”