UK MBA recognizes current Project Connect internship companies, sponsors and students' team presentations

Project Connect

Having recently completed another successful semester of Project Connect in the full-time One Year MBA, the UK MBA program at the University of Kentucky's Gatton College of Business and Economics wanted to reflect and recognize their candidates’ accomplishments as well as the Project Connect employer sponsors, which include: Ale-8 Bottling Company, Alltech, Big Ass Fans, Brown-Forman, Bullard, Cintas, ComtractsGE-Appliances a Haier Company, Gods' Pantry Food Bank, Neogen, R.J. Corman Railroad Group, Tempur Sealy International, UK Healthcare and Valvoline

Project Connect is an integral component of our One-Year MBA program at Gatton, providing candidates with the opportunity to apply what they are learning in the class room to a real world project, improve their project management skills, and strengthen their soft skills in terms of teaming, leadership and managing-up in an organization.

This past semester, candidates in the One Year MBA program worked on a variety of growth strategy projects for their company sponsors, from developing strategies to enter new markets to developing strategies to increase market share and profitability in existing markets to informing a sustainability strategy.  Regardless of the project, the student groups worked diligently, performing research to develop a fact base and apply proven principles from their coursework, as well as a little creativity, to formulate recommendations for their company sponsors.

In the end, an important measure of the candidates’ performance in Project Connect is their company sponsors’ perspective on their performance, and the following is representative of the general feedback that the candidates received from their company sponsors:

  • “The team definitely addressed the goals and objectives of the project. They went above and beyond with the data analysis (4+ years) and provided excellent feedback.” says Phil Blandford, General Manager at Cintas
  • “The team did an exceptional job of framing the project scope, presenting their findings, and presenting their summary and conclusion." says John Vidal, Vice President, Director of Portfolio Innovation Projects and Global Production at Brown-Forman
  • “The team put a tremendous amount of effort into the engagement. It was clear in both the quality of the final presentation and in way they asked and answered questions throughout." says Justin Bovard, Senior Director at GE Appliances
  • “I think everyone at Valvoline was impressed on the breadth of research the team went through to develop their insights. In addition, they quickly became SME’s and the knowledge and understanding of the category came through in the team’s interaction here at Valvoline. They exceeded my expectations here and tackled everything I asked and more." says Keith Ferguson, Brand Manager at Valvoline

The UK MBA is extremely proud of the students' performance and are equally as appreciative of the engagement and support from the 2019/2020 Project Connect sponsors. For more information on the University of Kentucky MBA, please visit us at