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Beacom School of Business Student Wins First Place in National Beta Alpha Psi Competition

Beta Alpha Psi Beacom School of Business at USD USD Senior Megan Thomas (Right) with her Project Run With It team.

VERMILLION, S.D. – Beacom School of Business senior Megan Thomas won first place in the 2018 Project Run With It team competition at the Beta Alpha Psi annual meeting held in Washington, D.C.

Thomas, the USD Beta Alpha Psi president, was one of 72 students selected to participate in the Project Run With It competition. In this real-world consulting project, teams of four compete against each other, challenged to develop the best solution to a business problem faced by a selected not-for-profit organization. For winning, the USD chapter will be awarded $1,000, as well as a plaque.

“Project Run With It was an amazing experience. I feel honored to be the first person from the USD Beta Alpha Psi Chapter to win this award,” Thomas said. “I hope this experience inspires others to join a great organization and encourages them not to be afraid to take on new challenges.”

Thomas and Clark Haugen, chapter vice president of communications, joined students from 71 other Beta Alpha Psi chapters in the U.S., Australia and New Zealand. During the three-day conference, they participated in a community service project promoting literacy, listened to inspiring speakers and shared ideas and best practices for chapter operations. They return from the conference with a collection of ideas they hope to implement over the coming year, including more community service opportunities.

“Congratulations to Megan for winning first place in the Project Run With It competition. I am proud of Megan and Clark for representing USD so well at the Beta Alpha Psi Annual Conference,” said Venky Venkatachalam, Ph.D., dean of the Beacom School of Business. “We are extremely proud of all of our students’ accomplishments and grateful to our talented and dedicated faculty who make such student success possible.”

Founded in 1919, Beta Alpha Psi is an honor organization for financial information students and professionals. There are more than 300 chapters on college and university campuses with more than 300,000 members initiated since Beta Alpha Psi's formation.


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 84 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.


Hanna DeLange
USD News