Tippie students who won the University Partnership Challenge stand in front of the competition's sign
Monday, May 14, 2018
Tom Snee

A team from the University of Iowa captured the top spot in an annual competition sponsored by the Principal Financial Group that helps the Des Moines-based financial services company better market its product line.

The contest, the University Partnership Challenge, is a semester-long project in which students address a real business marketing challenge faced by one of the world’s largest insurance companies. This year’s challenge was to develop a marketing plan integrating voice technology into the company’s products and services. The UI team’s winning proposal suggested the company develop an app called the Princi“Pal” as an on-demand voice resource for consumers of Principal products. The app would make planning for retirement less confusing while helping build long-term relationships with consumers. 

UI team members include: Mercedes Angel of Denver, Iowa; Madison Doren of Pella, Iowa; Rita Guzman of Decorah, Iowa; Halie Henning of Coralville, Iowa; and Allie Stroud of West Des Moines, Iowa. The team members are all marketing majors in the Tippie College of Business. The team’s faculty adviser is Tim O’Conner, adjunct professor of marketing.

The competition drew teams from Iowa State University, the University of Northern Iowa, Drake University, Graceland University, and Grand View University.