Skip to Main Content
Coggin College of Business

Case Projects FAQ

  • What is a Case Project?

    Case projects are provided by members of the Management Advisory Council. Each is project is short-term (approximately 2 months or less), low-commitment (40 hours per student), real-world experience for one pair of Honors students. Case projects typically involve research or analyses on the member’s “that would be nice to know” list that has not yet risen to a level of urgency. In other words, these are important but not urgent issues. The case project and its students are overseen by a manager within the member’s organization.

  • What are the benefits?

    Cases allow council members to engage with Honors students via short, low-commitment projects. This increases the interaction and experience with the students and builds relationships that potentially lead to internships and employment. In addition, usable results are obtained through the students’ work.

    Students volunteer for the projects. The work is unpaid. However, it involves professional management-related activities and thus enables students to develop their skills, résumés, and professional networks.

  • What are the requirements?

    Case projects must meet the following requirements:

    • Scope – Cases must be relatable to an area of professional management activity.
    • Scale – Projects should be small enough to provide results after 80 hours of work. In other words, each student should be contributing 40 hours to the project.
    • Duration – Projects start near the beginning of a given semester (i.e., in September or January) and finish within two months (i.e., mid-November or mid-March).
    • Design – Cases have a clearly stated objective and/or problem to explore, often broken into a few steps likely involving data or access to company expertise to complete the work.
    • Oversight – Students are assigned directly to a manager who can answer questions and provide guidance and access.
  • Do you have examples?

    Case Projects are a new initiative for the Honors in Management. However, the Coggin marketing department has piloted a similar initiative in partnership with VENUS Fashion. VENUS provided two separate cases for four students to complete:

    • Brand Analysis – Students compared brand attributes between VENUS and selected competitors.
    • User Experience – Students followed customers through the purchase process at VENUS and at selected competitors.

    Since the pilot with VENUS, other marketing cases studies have been successfully completed:

    • CSX – Students analyzed all chemical shipments in the eastern U.S., identifying unmet needs and sales opportunities, and creating a repeatable analysis process.
    • Doyle Group – Students defined “gig” marketing worker requirements and then built an on-demand pool by identifying, vetting, and contracting qualified workers.
    • Crowley – Students analyzed two years of all global container shipments—by product category, customer, and ports of departure and entry—to determine alternative near-shore opportunities. This became a repeatable process.
    • Fanatics – Students assessed the direct-to-web photo assets process, categorizing hundreds of vendors (with tens of thousands of products) into four categories of asset quality. They then recommended process improvements and built a dashboard currently in use.
    • Community First – In advance of Community First reopening a branch on the UNF campus, students completed a full qualitative and quantitative market research study of students’ financial health and financial awareness.
  • What makes a good case project?

    Good projects use existing or easily gathered data allowing students to make meaningful analyses or comparisons.

    Good cases could include operational, production, service, or value chain analysis. They might include processes, internal or external customer experience audits, or other reviews based on data a council member has at hand or that is collectable by survey or other quick method.

    (Council members with an idea for a case project, should contact to discuss.)

  • How are cases managed?

    Cases are overseen by a manager at the council member’s organization. While our students are bright, self-learning, and motivated, they typically are not highly experienced. A work plan with guidance and oversight are important to the project’s success. We recommend, at a minimum, a process that includes these events:

    Case Project Registration – The council member files a case project (see Resources) with the Honors committee, who adds the member to the first Advisory Council meeting agenda of a Fall or Spring semester.

    Introductory Presentation – The council member presents the case at the meeting. An outline for the presentation is provided below.

    Networking –­ Students approach the member during the networking portion of the meeting to learn more, and then register their interest with Honors course instructor for consideration.

    Student Assignment – Two students are selected for the case. Assignment is based on the skillsets needed by the council member and the abilities and interests of the students. Introductions are then made between the organization’s project manager and the students.

    Project Kick-Off – A kick-off meeting is held between the manager and students, providing a project overview, clear instructions (e.g., project plan), outcome examples, and required data. The students are asked to complete a small, measurable part of the project within a week to ensure they understand the objective.

    Initial Check – A first update meeting is scheduled approximately one week later to ensure students are heading in the right direction. Feedback is provided to help ensure the students will deliver what is expected. (Additional meetings may be scheduled as desired.)

    Mid-Check – After approximately one month, a formal update meeting is held to ensure the students are progressing as expected. This could include an internal presentation for additional feedback. (Additional meetings may be scheduled as needed or desired.)

    Results Presentation Draft – Results are provided in a final presentation draft, which is reviewed by the manager.

    Results Presentation – Students present their findings internally at the organization and at the last Advisory Council meeting of the semester. The council member controls what is presented at the council meeting to avoid disclosure of proprietary information. An outline for the presentation is provided in Resources.

  • How does a case project get registered?

    Council members provide the below Case Project Registration information to the Honors committee. The projects are discussed with the sponsor and committee and then placed on the next semester’s first Council meeting agenda.