The firm supported the University of Michigan Law School’s first Corporate Counseling Competition on November 9th with both sponsorship and judging.
The event, which was founded by one of the firm’s 2019 summer associates and University of Michigan Law student Alex VanDerKolk, included six teams of five randomly assigned JD and MBA students. The teams served as consultants to a “public company” for which they were provided with a common set of facts and documents known to all competitors. The teams were tasked with evaluating the business potential and risk of strategic alternatives in response to an industry-wide regulatory change involving the National Currency Act and the recently promulgated regulation allowing for fintech companies to submit National Bank Charter applications. Based on their analysis, the teams presented their recommendation(s) in the form of a PowerPoint presentation in a panel format to the board of directors (a.k.a. the judges).
“Despite their close proximity on campus, business and law students have limited opportunities to work collaboratively together before graduation,” said attorney and event judge Jon Sriro. “The professional disciplines are highly connected, but discussion within the classroom, at times, masks their interdependence. While developing a strong background rooted in the respective fundamentals is necessary for a successful career in either professions, it is equally, if not more, important to be able to effectively and efficiently navigate where they intersect on a regular basis.”
The winners of the competition included:
Best Drafting for Sell-Side Counsel Team: Matt Shina, and Mohamad Zawahra
Best Drafting for Buy-Side Counsel: Phillip Washburn, and Hayley Wolf
Overall Best Sell-Side Counsel Team: Sean McCroskey and Matt Piggins
Overall Best Buy-Side Counsel Team: Rana Eid and Chuck Mahone
“We are hoping that this will become an annual event,” said Sriro. “It fills a much needed gap between disciplines and allows us to give back to the next generation of business and transaction leaders. We look forward to the opportunity to support it again next year.”