Skip to main content

USD Graduate Students Win Regional HR Management Contest

VERMILLION, S.D. – A graduate team from the University of South Dakota won first place at the Society for Human Resource Management Regional Student Case Competition and now will advance to the national competition.

USD’s winning team included team captain Ryan McCarty of Alton, Iowa, along with Kayla Haeder of Brandon and Tyce Daggitt of Sioux Falls. McCarty is working on a master’s of arts in interdisciplinary studies while both Haeder and Daggitt are MBA students.

Each team in the competition received a different HR problem and had to develop a solution, write a paper and create an oral presentation for the judges. Topics included management practices, staffing and recruiting, compensation and benefits, and labor relations. The teams were expected to demonstrate strategic thinking, ethical decision-making, and strong leadership and presentation skills.

“The judges had some difficult questions, but I know our intense preparation helped us convey all our ideas in a professional and compelling manner,” McCarty said.

The regional competition involved 120 students from 29 teams including schools like Purdue, Utah State, Marshall and Florida Atlantic. USD entered both a graduate and undergraduate team.

“I couldn’t be happier with the effort of both teams,” said Professor Damian Lonsdale, Ph.D., of the USD Beacom School of Business, who advised the students.

The winning USD team receives free registration to the national SHRM conference in Las Vegas along with $2,500 for travel.


USD's Beacom School of Business was established in 1927 and has been accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) since 1949. The leading business school in the region, Beacom’s programs are consistently ranked among the top business schools in the nation by Princeton Review, U.S. News & World Report and others for its high-quality learning experience, student success, affordability, and high-caliber of faculty and students. Whether a student chooses face-to-face or online courses, Beacom’s programs emphasize real-world experience through professional organizations, quality internships and capstone projects.


Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 202 undergraduate and 78 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, Knudson School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 16:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 18 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.

This material is available in an alternate format upon request. Please contact University Relations at 605-677-5759. If you are a person with a disability and need a special accommodation to fully participate in any university activity or event, please contact Disability Services at 605-677-6389 as soon as possible, but no later than 48 hours before the event, so that appropriate arrangements may be made.


Hanna DeLange
USD News