NRF Foundation Names Top Teams for 2024 University Challenge

WASHINGTON – The NRF Foundation today announced the top three teams for the 2024 NRF Foundation University Student Challenge. Presented by Kohl’s, the competition provides undergraduate students with the opportunity to apply classroom skills in a real-world setting.  

"The NRF Foundation University Challenge showcases the exceptional talent of the students emerging from our higher education system," NRF Foundation Executive Director Adam Lukoskie said. "The creativity and strategic thinking demonstrated by these teams is unmatched and we are excited to see that translate in their professional careers in retail and beyond."

The NRF Foundation University Challenge showcases the exceptional talent of the students emerging from our higher education system.

NRF Foundation Executive Director Adam Lukoskie

The top-performing teams include: 

  • Drexel University (Aly Chew, Rajvi Dharamshi, Allie Gress and Krysta Mendoza) 

  • Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising (Jeanine Bandyk, Ana Carolina Leisner and Isabela Vella Sarlo Sanchez) 

  • Florida State University (Asiyah Ali-Salahuddin, Glenda Holton, Sofia Kunkel and Chase Pittman) 

As part of this year’s competition, undergraduate student teams were tasked with developing and pitching a product assortment and end-to-end marketing campaign to grow the Hispanic market. The finalists will pitch their campaigns live to a panel of executive retail judges.  

The top team will receive a $30,000 tuition scholarship, with the other finalists each receiving $20,000 per team. 

Since its launch, the NRF Foundation Student Challenge has awarded more than $400,000 in scholarship funds. The team competition gives students an opportunity to apply the skills learned in their coursework and connect with industry professionals. 

The winners of the NRF Foundation University Challenge will be honored at the NRF Foundation Honors on Jan. 14 in New York City.  

About NRF 
The National Retail Federation passionately advocates for the people, brands, policies and ideas that help retail succeed. From its headquarters in Washington, D.C., NRF empowers the industry that powers the economy. Retail is the nation’s largest private-sector employer, contributing $3.9 trillion to annual GDP and supporting one in four U.S. jobs — 52 million working Americans. For over a century, NRF has been a voice for every retailer and every retail job, educating, inspiring and communicating the powerful impact retail has on local communities and global economies. 

About NRF Foundation 
The NRF Foundation provides the skills and resources needed for a life-changing career. As NRF's nonprofit 501(c)(3), we connect people to an industry that’s a great place to start and a great place to grow. Together, we help people build better lives and stronger communities.