Pi Sigma Epsilon: Epsilon Theta 2021 National Convention
Author: Jadilyn Franco
“I do not know anyone who has got to the top without hard work. That is the recipe. It will not always get you to the top, but should get you pretty near.” –Margaret Thatcher
Everything is thought to have a purpose, or perhaps a mission. At Epsilon Theta our mission is to be an elite organization! This year we proved how our chapter is elite by being honored with multiple awards at the 2021 National Convention. Our chapter earned the Arno Kleimenhagen Award for Sustained Excellence in recognition of the chapter’s 13th straight year of achieving Gold Status! With achieving Gold Status, we placed 2nd for Top Gold! We also placed 2nd for Top Professional Development Program. We had Kyle Schott place 2nd for Top Project Manager. Our Top For-Profit Sales and Marketing Project placed 1st! We also had members, Jayden Lovell and Catie Jespersen each awarded a scholarship!
What is the National Convention?
“There’s no way around doing the work it takes to get you there.” – Joyce Chapman
Nationals as former Epsilon Theta President Hannah Haisman puts it is, “a culmination of everything we work towards during the year. It is a week of competition, celebration, and professional growth.” This year’s virtual Pi Sigma Epsilon’s National Convention held competitions like the Pro-Am Sell- a-Thon, Mutual of Omaha Interview Competition, National Speakers Competition, and the Professional Sports Selling Competition. Of course, nationals also consist of the Scholarship and Nationals Awards Program. “With Nationals being online for the second consecutive year, it gave our chapter a better understanding of what it was going to look like and change things from the past year in order to perform better. Getting our chapter together to watch the event only made placing in each category we participated in that much better. Seeing everyone’s hard work pay off and to celebrate together made it very heartwarming for all,” says current Epsilon Theta President Kyle Schott.
Top Professional Development
“Nothing is going to work out unless you step up and make it happen.” – Auliq Ice
The Top Professional Development team consist of team lead Mitchell Pregler, Kellie Feldkamp, Jadilyn Franco, and Sam Schraut. This team is all composed of new members of PSE from the fall semester of 2020 and includes three freshmen! When asked to describe and share his overall thoughts on this project team lead, Mitchell Pregler said, “Overall, it was very chaotic. A week before the presentations were due, I had not started the script and I was way behind. I, along with my team, spent a great deal of time (roughly 60 hours) trying to write the script, record, and edit the presentation. However, even amongst the chaos, it all paid off when we saw our name called for 2nd place overall in the nation, beating out 60+ other chapters, and many of the other schools who had double or triple the student population here at UNI. It was definitely an eye-opening experience for the future, and I hope to rank even higher in the future.”
Top For-Profit Sales and Marketing Project + Top Project Manager
“Ideas do not work...It is YOU who has to do the work.” – Manoj Arora
Our 1st place winning Top For-Profit Sales and Marketing Project was earned from the successful project of Business Olympics! This project was run by Grant Croat who described this project as, “an opportunity for students to show off their business skills to business professionals in that particular area of focus. The event was split into 3 events; a Sales Role Play event, a Shark Tank-style Business Pitch competition, and an interview competition. The idea was to give the students the ability to go through these role plays with these business professionals acting as their judges. This provides an awesome opportunity for students to receive feedback from a professional in that area, while also giving the sponsor the opportunity to see the talent that these students have to offer! The event was originally designed to be in person, but due to COVID-19, the event was pushed online. I didn't expect to have the success that we did through a virtual environment! Although not everyone liked the virtual nature, I got a lot of great feedback in the end from students and sponsors. In all, we raised more money than expected and held an event with way fewer bumps in the road than we thought!” This projected generated $8481.51 in profit with an 89.4% profit margin.
The Top Project Manager according to PSE, “is presented to a collegian who has managed a significant project successfully during the past year. The winner represents excellence in the area of managing a chapter project by employing best practices in project management.” Kyle Schott’s management of the chapter’s Bizopoly project earned him 2nd Place overall in PSE’s Top Project Manager category. Bizopoly earned the chapter $6629.55 in profit. Kyle describes Bizopoly as “a social networking event we put on for both students and sponsors to organically network over our own version of Monopoly.” In regards to how he thought this project went, Kyle said, “I think my overall presentation went pretty well, I think I was able to hit the bullet points I strived for leading to a 2nd place finish!”
“Hard work makes you feel good because you have accomplished something.” – Alcurtis Tumer
The Lewis F. Gordon Top Gold Chapter recognizes the PSE chapter that excelled in all areas of
chapter operations including programming, membership development, recruitment, and chapter operations, while attaining the Gold level of the Chapter Operations Guide (minimum of 46,000 points). Epsilon Theta’s sensational chapter programming earned the chapter 2nd Place in the Lewis F. Gordon Top Gold Chapter award category. The team lead for this presentation was Hannah Haisman who said, “We placed 2nd in the nation, which was a HUGE honor. After not even qualifying to present last year and fighting through a global pandemic, I was beyond proud of this accomplishment!”
"It's hard to beat a person who never gives up."- Babe Ruth
The COUNTRY Financial Scholarship is a $1,000 scholarship awarded to a student who is dedicated to their academic and professional success and is from a chapter in one of the following states: Illinois, Iowa,
Minnesota, Missouri, Wisconsin, Alabama, or Georgia. In recognition of her outstanding work done for PSE, Jayden Lovell of Epsilon Theta was awarded the COUNTRY Financial Scholarship!
Mu Kappa Tau Scholarship is a $1,000 scholarship, sponsored by the PSE National Educational Foundation to recognize the outstanding academic achievements of a member of Mu Kappa Tau, the National Marketing Honor Society, who is also a member of Pi Sigma Epsilon. Epsilon Theta member, Catie Jespersen was awarded the Mu Kappa Tau Scholarship at the 2021 National Convention for her dedication to furthering her marketing career!
Hard Work is Worth it
“Whatever you have not strived hard to achieve will not strive hard to fade.” – Isrealmore Ayivor
A lack of results can cause you to not want to continue pursuing your goals. It’s a good thing Epsilon Theta is filled with motivated hard workers who push to see the results they deserve! Earning 5 awards at this year’s National Convention really shows that hard work pays off. A few of our nationals’ participants were asked if they thought the time and effort put into nationals was worth it and their answers were nothing short of amazing.
Hannah Haisman responded with, “YES! Not only does all of that hard work pay off during the awards ceremony which feels incredible, but it also prepares you to excel in the real world. Your discipline and drive are put to the test as you practice and prepare weeks before the competition. That type of hard work and dedication is something future employers seek in employees.”
Grant Croat answered, “These past couple of years have been hard for me as I was involved in two very large, and successful projects. Having Nationals online is kind of a bummer as you really don't receive the recognition that these students deserve. I have placed 1st the past two years in large projects, yet I never truly felt as if I was recognized fully for my role in that success. I believe however that when things return in person, that it will be worth it for students. I didn't join this organization to win trophies, I joined because I wanted the real-life experience that PSE provides through the projects that we do. That right there is enough for me!”
Kyle Schott replied, “The time spent stressing over presentations paid off for sure! I myself was on two presentations and making sure I had time to get both done along with school work became stressful at times but seeing everyone's success and excitement on awards night made every second worth it! It was also very special to see all the hard work the new members put into nationals, stepping into a role that is not easy and placing 2nd!”
Mitchel Pregler answered back, “I was the lead for the Top Professional Development program presentation. Overall, it was very chaotic. A week before the presentations were due, I had not started the script and I was way behind. I, along with my team, spent a great deal of time (roughly 60 hours) trying to write the script, record, and edit the presentation. However, even amongst the chaos, it all paid off when we saw our name called for 2nd place overall in the nation, beating out 60+ other chapters, and many of the other schools who had double or triple the student population here at UNI. It was definitely an eye-opening experience for the future, and I hope to rank even higher in the future.”
Although Nationals was virtual this year this chapter worked just as hard! Members new and old all had a fun time, Sam Schraut said, “It was totally rad!” With that, we will certainly miss all of our seniors! Senior Hannah Haisman commented, “What I will miss most about nationals is the feeling of pride and accomplishment as you place nationally against schools 3x our size. The night where they present the awards is truly so special, and is one of those things that you have to attend to truly understand how special of a feeling it is. I will also miss all of the collaboration and networking you do with company sponsors and other PSE chapters.” We can’t wait for the next cog year and to see what’s in store for Epsilon Theta.