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Team of Hospitality Business students claims third in an international hotel market analysis competition

A team from Michigan State University — featuring four School of Hospitality Business undergraduate students — took third place at an international hotel market analysis competition in New York City on Nov. 11.

The MSU team included HB seniors Jason Klee, Mackenzie Sappe, Jake Davidson, and Morgan Wheeler, and was mentored by HB Associate Professor Seung Hyun (James) Kim. The team in the Smith Travel Research (STR) Hotel Market Analysis Competition was one of 33 teams of university students, including six from abroad. Nine of the teams were comprised of graduate students.

From left to right: Associate Professor JaeMin Cha, Jake Davidson, Mackenzie Sappe, Jason Klee, Morgan Wheeler, and Associate Professor Seung Hyun (James) Kim. Photo courtesy JaeMin Cha.
From left to right: Associate Professor JaeMin Cha, Jake Davidson, Mackenzie Sappe, Jason Klee, Morgan Wheeler, and Associate Professor Seung Hyun (James) Kim. Photo courtesy JaeMin Cha.

The MSU squad prepared a detailed analysis of the Minneapolis-St. Paul hotel market for the competition. This included review of its overall market characteristics, demand drivers, supply-demand analysis, comparable city analysis, and trended data and summarized key takeaways for the audience.

This year competition was more intense than prior years for this MSU team. Eight teams competed within three separate rooms, and only two teams from each room advanced to be one of the top six finalist teams. The MSU team, which was selected to the final round, had only a 10-minute break after the finalist announcement before the final presentations began.

Virginia Tech was the overall winner, followed by Kansas State, MSU, Cornell, and Hong Kong Polytech.

The STR Student Market Study Competition is an annual contest hosted by STR, a leading global provider of competitive benchmarking, information services and research to the hotel industry. The next STR Student Market Study Competition will take place in Hong Kong, China.


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