The National Corn Growers Association acted as the signature sponsor in this year’s Fuels Institute University Case Competition. Students from universities across the nation submitted abstracts addressing this challenge: “Through the lens of a fuel retailer, establish a timeline of the evolution of the light-duty vehicle fueling infrastructure in the United States through 2040.” The case competition gave students a unique opportunity to consider all fueling strategies to maintain economic viability — including corn-based ethanol — while also addressing current policy, energy trends, emerging technology, and other factors.
The winner of this year’s competition was the team from Johns Hopkins University. The team was made up of Yuanlei Chen, Siwei Ye, Xiaoxue Hou and Shuang Yu. Their abstract was titled "How Gas Stations Will Cope with Future Transportation and Fuels Market.” Their business case employed strategies to remain adaptable to market drivers, including leveraging the sale of E15 and higher blends of ethanol in their retail stores as a cornerstone of their long-term strategy.
“NCGA would like to congratulate the winners of this year’s Case Competition,” said Ethanol Action Team Chair and Missouri farmer Jay Schutte. “We were thrilled to partner with the Fuels Institute as a signature sponsor and were very excited to see the winning team incorporate ethanol into their winning business case.”
The competition consisted of three rounds of judging: An abstract submission, case submission, and in-person presentations. Dave Loos, Market Development Director at Illinois Corn and Bradley Schad, Director of Market Development at Missouri Corn served as judges for round two of the process.
The other two teams were made up of students from Cornell University, University of Houston and Carnegie Mellon University. The top submissions will be published by the Fuels Institute in the coming months.
Learn more about the Fuels Institute University Case Competition here.
CommonGround is a group of farmers connecting with consumers through conversations about science and research and personal stories about food and misinformation surrounding farming. Supported by the NCGA and state corn organizations.
The Soil Health Partnership (SHP) is a farmer-led initiative that fosters transformation in agriculture through improved soil health. Administered by NCGA the partnership has more than 220 working farms enrolled in 16 states. SHP’s mission is to utilize science and data to partner with farmers who are adopting conservation agricultural practices that improve the economic and environmental sustainability of the farm.
The Corn Utilization and Technology Conference (CUTC) is a biennial event happening this June. Learn more.