Carol Elliott | March 31, 2017
A team of University of Notre Dame undergraduate students won first place in the 2017 Undergraduate Venture Capital Investing Competition (VCIC), a highly regarded annual event hosted by the University of North Carolina’s Kenan-Flagler Business School.
The five students — a combination of finance and economics majors who ranged from sophomore to senior — bested six teams during the final round of competition on March 25. Jackson Jhin, Lavinia Li, Daniel Ko, Tyler Christian and Carlos Covarrubias Serrano traveled to UNC’s Chapel Hill campus for the final event.
“What I like most about VCIC is the competition demands students think critically about a business’s value proposition and competitive advantage,” said Kevin Burke, managing director of the Notre Dame Institute for Global Investing and the teaching professor who coached the Notre Dame team. “These invaluable life skills will benefit the students for years to come. The regular interaction with high-profile venture capitalist and entrepreneurs only adds to the experience.”
All told, 20 teams from some of the top undergraduate business schools in the nation participated in the 2017 competition, including Chicago, Michigan, Duke and Cornell. In February, the teams competed in three regional competitions, with the top two teams from the mid-Atlantic and Northeast regionals and three teams from the Central region proceeding to the finals. Notre Dame finished second behind Miami of Ohio in the Central region.
"VCIC stands apart from any other program or competition I have been a part of at Notre Dame,” economics senior Jackson Jhin. “Through meeting with VCs who judged the competition, we had the incredible opportunity to get exposure and show them our skills. For undergrads, there is practically no other way to meet a VC and show them how you think."