Jones College students competing in the Phi Beta Lambda national contest are, front row from left, Melissa (Camille) Hankins, Tara Williamson and Owen Cote; back row, Alyssa Pearce, JC adviser Mitch Dubose, Dylan Meeks, Grant Valverde, Tyler Rouse, Daniel Easley, Stephen Grantham, Trent Norris, Kaleb Ashmore and Zachary Busby. (Photo by Teresa McCreery/ JC Media Relations)


Twelve Jones College students attended the Phi Beta Lambda National Conference in San Antonio and returned with national honors.  

The Management Analysis and Decision-Making team of Daniel Easley of Laurel, Tyler Rouse of Lucedale and Owen Cote of Sumrall placed fourth in the nation. This same team also placed ninth in the Financial Analysis and Decision-Making competition. Kaleb Ashmore of Sumrall placed seventh in the nation in computer programming.

“It was truly an unexpected opportunity to be able to represent Jones in this way. It was an incredible way to close out our time at Jones. Many great memories were made!” said Easley.

Other top honors came from the Network Design team of Trent Norris of Ellisville and Grant Valverde of Enterprise, who placed seventh in the nation. Mendenhall’s Tara Williamson was a Top 15 finalist in the Hospitality Management competition.

“It was a long road to get to nationals and I’m happy we competed at this level. Just standing on the stage was an honor and to be able to represent Jones made this even more special,” said Rouse.

Jones College PBL adviser David Ray was especially proud of his students’ perseverance to continue competing among the nation’s top students.

“I was very proud of our students’ accomplishments,” said Ray. “We had six Top 10 winners, which is a continuation our tradition of excellence at the national level. For the last 10 years, we’ve seen more students rise to the top. This is a testament to the hard work put forth by the students and their level of instruction here at Jones. These students worked hard to get to San Antonio and to watch their efforts pay off as they received recognition among 2,000 of their peers is very rewarding.”

Other students competing on the national level include Alyssa Pearce of Columbia, who competed in Job Interview. Melissa (Camille) Hankins of Laurel competed in Accounting Principles and Entrepreneurship Concepts. Zachary Busby of Laurel competed in Help Desk. Stephen Grantham of Hattiesburg competed in Computer Programming and Dylan Meeks of Ellisville competed in Sports Management and Marketing and Contemporary Sports Issues. 

Each of these 12 JC students placed first or second in the state PBL state conference and competition in February to qualify for the national competition in June.

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