JMU Students Named Winner of the 2011 Google Challenge

Americas Regional Winners of the 2011 Google Online Marketing Challenge
Larissa Cookson, Lindsay Keller (Team Captain), and Molly Shea. Americas Regional Winners of the 2011 Google Online Marketing Challenge

Congratulations to the James Madison University team of Lindsay Keller (Team Captain), Larissa Cookson, and Molly Shea for being awarded as the Americas Regional Winner of the 2011 Google Online Marketing Challenge

In the 2011 Challenge, there were over 35,000 students competing from more than 95 countries.   To be one of the top five teams out of the thousands who competed globally is quite an accomplishment.  There were four global regions in the Google Challenge: Americas, Europe, MEA (Middle East and Africa) and Asia Pacific.  The Americas region consisted of teams competing in North America, Central America, and South America.

The winning threesome participated in Dr. Theresa B. Clarke’s special topics in marketing course in the College of Business.  The students developed an online marketing campaign using Google AdWords for their client SOS Advertising, a local business selling promotional products, advertising specialties, and business gifts.

Lindsay Keller was the Team Captain in the Google Challenge.  She graduated in 2011 from JMU with a major in marketing.  Originally from Skykesville, MD, she currently works as a Jr. Account Manager at Search Mojo in Charlottesville, VA.    Larissa Cookson  completed her degree in 2011 with a major in marketing and a minor in European business.   She will begin employment in late August as a Search Marketing Analyst at the Rimm-Kaufman Group (RKG)  in Charlottesville, VA.  Molly Shea also graduated from JMU in 2011 with a marketing major and computer information systems minor.   She works in Pittsburgh, PA as a  Business Intelligence and Analytics Consultant at CIBER, Inc.

This is the second time that JMU has captured the Americas Regional Winner title under Dr. Clarke’s direction.   Similar to her 2009 winners, the 2011 winners will be traveling to the Googleplex this October.

All James Madison University Challenge participants ranked as a semi-finalist.  A semi-finalist ranking means that the team performed in the top 100 globally.  Congratulations to Amy Todd, Ashley Magness, Brittany Bazzle, Casey Davenport, Emily Senn, Gary Politi, Lauren Catino, Linn Baumgarndt, Meaghan McDonald, Nate Chua, Patty Caltabiano, and Sarah Bonner.


11 Comments on "JMU Students Named Winner of the 2011 Google Challenge"

  1. Are your students looking for internships? I would be interested in sponsoring an internship in Career Services at Washington and Lee. Any interest? Should I contact someone else? Congrats on the Google Challenge win!
    Beverly Lorig, Director
    Washington and Lee Unversity


    1. Thanks Beverly. Dr. Eric Boyd ( is the best point of contact for setting up an internship for our marketing students.


    2. Beverly,
      Just let me know if I can be of assistance with this as well. Hope you are doing great and as you can see, we have quite the talented group of students. Don’t hesitate to give me a call if you’d like to discuss at 540-568-6229.
      Take care,


  2. I am not quite sure how I stumbled upon your page out of the billions out there. Let me just say I am really impressed that you are implementing useful technology and real life job skills into the classroom. America needs a lot more teachers like yourself. I am a 26 year old semi-recent college graduate from the University of Arizona. With Double majors in engineering management and entrepreneurship I still struggled to find steady employment in today’s market before deciding to pursue my passion and starting my own IT company which has provided me with a steady living until I can get some experience and hopefully get into my real dream which is inspiring others to pursue their dreams. I hope we can network via LinkedIn or some how stay in touch as your page and students comments moved me. I hope to provide future generations with my knowledge and experiences that came with it along the way as I see you have done a great job of. I’m sure this will be censored but my email is


  3. I would love to hire these girls to do our online advertising. I have sent you an email and would love to hear from you. Thanks very much.

    Jade Webber


    1. Thanks Jade. The three winners are all employed full time, but I’ll send you some names of other Google Challenge participants.


  4. I cannot wait for next semester. This is going to be a great way to wrap up my time at JMU!

    Congrats to the winners – hopefully we can represent JMU once again!


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