Senior Conor Labita Wins First Place in Speed Selling Competition in Russ Berrie Institute’s 11th Annual National Sales Challenge Hosted by WP

Conor Labita during the competition

Conor Labita, a senior at William Paterson University, won first place as Speed Selling Champion and Illinois State University took top honors among professional sales teams across the country in the 11th Annual National Sales Challenge held at William Paterson University.

The Russ Berrie Institute for Professional Sales (RBI) at the University’s Cotsakos College of Business hosted the event, an intense series of selling competitions and workshops held at the University’s campus in Wayne, N.J., from November 15 to 17, 2017.

More than 100 college students representing 34 universities from across the country, as well as from Edinburgh Napier University in Scotland, participated in the competition.

The competition is designed by the University’s Russ Berrie Institute for Professional Sales to strengthen students’ sales skills and offer them an opportunity to network with business executives from companies around the country who will judge the events and serve as sponsors.

“Our sponsors continue to pick William Paterson’s National Sales Challenge as the premier national sales competition because of our campus setting, top-quality sales talent and student engagement,” says Prabakar Kothandaraman, executive director and professor in the Russ Berrie Institute for Professional Sales. “We’re also proud this year to have William Paterson senior Conor Labita win the Speed Sell Championship, which is the University’s first victory in this category since the competition began 11 years ago.”

Competitions included the sales role-play event, which used a selling situation from sponsor Complete Document Solution-Xerox, and a speed-selling competition, which requires students to rotate through tables seated with company executives to pitch themselves for two minutes for a generic job.

Winners are as follows:

1st Place – Illinois State University; team members are Mackenzie Riechers and Olivia Parker
2nd Place – University of Central Florida; team members are Jacob Samoranski and Elizabeth Drivas
3rd Place – Purdue University; team members are Morgan Vastag and Heather Fils
4th Place – University of Texas at Dallas; team members are Ashley Varela and Ali Kassam

1st Place – Olivia Parker of Illinois State University
2nd Place – Morgan Vastag of Purdue University
3rd Place – Christopher Aday of the University of North Alabama
4th Place – Mackenzie Riechers of Illinois State University

1st Place – Conor Labita of William Paterson University
2nd Place – Morgan Vastag of Purdue University
3rd Place – Canyon Mueller of Western State Colorado University
4th Place – Olivia Parker of Illinois State University

Speed Selling Alternate Champion – Mandy Engelman of High Point University

1st Place – Jacob Samoranski of the University of Central Florida
2nd Place – Brandon Doering of North Dakota State University
3rd Place – Emi Facer of Utah State University
4th Place – Mackenzie Riechers of Illinois State University

Participating schools for 2017 are: 
Baylor University

Bloomsburg University
Clarkson University
Edinburgh Napier University
Farmingdale State College
Georgia Southern University
High Point University
Illinois State University
James Madison University
Metropolitan University of Denver
Morehouse College
North Dakota State University
Northern Illinois University
Penn State Harrisburg
Plymouth State University
Purdue University
Salisbury University
Siena College
Southern New Hampshire University
St. Catherine University
Temple University
University of Arkansas - Little Rock
University of Central Florida
University of Central Oklahoma
University of Louisiana-Lafayette
University of New Hampshire
University of North Alabama
University of Texas at Dallas
University of Texas-Arlington
University of Wisconsin-Parkside
University of Wisconsin-Whitewater
Utah State University
Western State Colorado University
William Paterson University

The National Sales Challenge was held in the Russ Berrie Professional Sales Laboratory, a unique computerized multimedia facility that simulates business office environments in the University’s 1600 Valley Road building. William Paterson offers a bachelor of science degree in professional sales through the Department of Professional Sales, and provides training programs for sales professionals in the Laboratory.