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Two Beacom School of Business Students Take Home Top Prizes at Regional Sales and Marketing Competition

Photo of Pi Sigma Epsilon members at a competition. Students at the Beacom School of Business competed at the Pi Sigma Epsilon Midwest Regional Conference.

VERMILLION, S.D. – University of South Dakota Beacom School of Business students Eli Richards and Paige Lonbaken each won first place in competitions at the Pi Sigma Epsilon Midwest Regional Conference.

The Beacom School of Business took a total of seven students to the Midwest Regional Conference in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where they were joined by students from 12 other schools. Students had the opportunity to compete in a variety of events, including the Pro-Am Sell-A-Thon and the Marketing Case Competition.

The Pro-Am Sell-A-Thon evaluates students’ ability to perform in a competitive environment, demonstrate verbal and nonverbal communication skills and understand the sales process in a business-to-business setting within a competition. A total of 70 students competed, including three students from the Beacom School of Business. Eli Richards, a junior marketing student from Mobridge, South Dakota, won the overall regional competition where he earned the first place trophy, as well as an all-expense paid trip and registration for the National Convention this March in Jacksonville, Florida.

This year’s Marketing Case Competition was sponsored by UPS, and they asked students to develop ideas on ways that UPS could benefit small businesses. A total of 11 teams competed and each team had anywhere between 8-11 members from different universities. USD senior Paige Lonbaken competed in the case study competition and her team took first place. Lonbaken is a marketing major from Pierre, South Dakota.

“It was extremely rewarding to see Eli and Paige’s hard work pay off when they were presented their first place awards,” said associate professor of marketing Rand Wergin. “I am very proud to see our students compete at such a high level and their successes reflect the caliber of students we have at Beacom.”

Pi Sigma Epsilon is a professional marketing fraternity that brings theory and practice together. Students of any major may join alumni, educators and practitioners in a nationwide network of marketing opportunities and resources.


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