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November 21, 2013

AMA attends regional conference at Aurora University, UW-Eau Claire places in two of three events

American Marketing AssociationStudents from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire chapter of the American Marketing Association (AMA) traveled to Illinois to attend Making the Connection, a regional collegiate conference held Friday, October 18 at Aurora University. More than 100 students from 14 colleges and universities attended the event which was hosted by the Aurora University AMA student chapter.

Mark Ailsworth, director of Midwest sales for Maxpoint Interactive, a digital advertising technology company, opened the conference with a keynote address on the role of ‘big data’ in marketing. Throughout the day students attended marketing sessions led by professionals who worked for sports, financial, direct marketing and direct mail companies. Each presenter was asked to address three questions: 1) What changes are you facing in your industry, 2) How have you adjusted to these changes, and 3) How can students better prepare for these changes. The conference ended with a panel presentation by Chicago area business professionals who offered students advice on internships, resume writing and job hunting, and employment opportunities.

The conference also featured student competitions in sales, sports promotion, and marketing strategy. UW-Eau Claire placed in two of the three events. Callie Johnson, a senior business administration major from Spooner, WI, took second in the sales competition. First place in the sports promotion competition went to the UW-Eau Claire team consisting of Michael Boucher, a senior marketing major from Beaver Dam, WI, and Ariel Wegner, a senior marketing major from Marshfield, WI. Christopher Kuehn, a sophomore business administration major from Green Bay, WI, and Dallas Opelt, a junior information systems, systems development major from Wauwatosa, WI, took second in the event.

“Everyone who competed gave it their all and did an amazing job,” said Ariel Wegner, UW-Eau Claire AMA student chapter president. “We even had some first time competitors. We’ve got a lot of talented young professionals in our organization.”

Prior to attending the conference, UW-Eau Claire students toured three Chicago area companies: HomeFinder.com, an online real estate listing service, Slack + Company, a business to business marketing agency, and SapientNitro, a digital advertising agency.

“I learned a lot from these visits and was glad I had the opportunity to network with different professionals at each company,” said Sarah Wittmann, UW-Eau Claire AMA vice president of communication. “It was great to check out businesses that I could potentially see myself working for once I graduate.”

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