4 students pose against a brick wall


CRESTVIEW HILLS, Ky. (March 5, 2024) — Thomas More University is excited to announce its inaugural participation in The Econ Games 2024, hosted by the University of Kentucky’s Gatton College of Business and Economics. Held on March 21 and 22, the focus of the games is not just economic analysis, but the broader spectrum of solving real-world business problems through innovation. Participation in this event, which has been in place since 2017, marks a significant milestone for the University.

Fostering Problem Solving and Innovation

The Econ Games, operating for the last eight years, was originally designed to immerse students in the practical aspects of economic analysis, but has evolved into developing future business leaders skilled in identifying and solving complex business problems. Participants engage with extensive datasets, provided by data sponsors, to identify underlying trends, and develop actionable insights in various business scenarios.

The competition challenges teams to pinpoint a significant business problem from the provided dataset and propose an innovative solution, culminating in a concise presentation of their findings. This format not only tests the participant’s analytical skills but also their ability to innovate—transforming raw data into strategic business opportunities. Thomas More’s team, made up of Ezequiel Villarreal, Sondre Taklo, Nick Hubbard, and Matthew Weil, is ready to leverage this opportunity to showcase their problem-solving skills and innovative thinking.

Cultivating an Innovation Mindset

At the heart of the competition is the pursuit of innovation. Thomas More University’s participation underscores the institution’s commitment to nurturing an environment where innovation flourishes. By tackling real-world business challenges, students are encouraged to think creatively, proposing solutions that break new ground and challenge the status quo. This focus on innovation is more than just a competition criterion; it is a fundamental skill set that Thomas More University aims to instill in its students. The ability to approach problems with an innovative mindset is invaluable, preparing students not just for The Econ Games, but for a successful career in the ever-evolving business landscape.

“The Econ Games 2024 offers our students an invaluable platform to apply their academic knowledge to real-world business scenarios,” says Jeni Al Bahrani, team advisor and director of the Thomas More University Zembrodt Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation. “It signifies our dedication to providing our students with real-world experiences that emphasize both problem-solving and innovation. We are excited to see our students apply their knowledge and creativity in this competitive setting, showcasing the high caliber of education and training they receive at the University.”

As the Thomas More University team steps into the arena of The Econ Games for the first time, it does so with the ambition of not only participating but making a mark with innovative solutions to business problems. “Helping create Thomas More’s first team was exciting, and I’m glad to have this opportunity to use what we are learning in class in a real-life business setting,” says student participant Nick Hubbard. “Being comfortable with the uncomfortable is what this competition will ask of our team, and I’m eagerly anticipating our chance to be great.” This opportunity is a testament to the University’s commitment to excellence in education, preparing students to be the next generation of leaders in business innovation.

For more information about Thomas More University’s Zembrodt Center for Innovations and Entrepreneurs, visit thomasmore.edu/zembrodt-center. For more information about Thomas More University, visit www.thomasmore.edu.


About Thomas More University

Founded in 1921, Thomas More University stands as a beacon of academic excellence and innovation, challenging students to Make It More. Deeply rooted in the Catholic Intellectual Tradition, this timeless foundation supports a transformative educational experience as students looking to Be More are guided in the pursuit of knowledge, ethical leadership, and the integration of faith and reason. Through the high-quality, liberal arts education provided at Thomas More, students examine the ultimate meaning of life, their place in the world, and their responsibility to others which leads to the ability to think critically and contribute meaningfully to the world. Serving more than 2,000 students, Thomas More takes its place as the premier Catholic university in the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky region, being named one of the 2024 Best Colleges in the U.S. by the Wall Street Journal. To find out more, visit thomasmore.edu.

MEDIA CONTACT: Judy Crist, executive director of creative services and communications, cristj@thomasmore.edu, 859.344.3443