FIU Business staff members join in Mercedes-Benz 5K Corporate Run.

An event for thousands of people in your target market is definitely a place you want to be. That’s why the College of Business Administration joined in the Florida International University (FIU) sponsorship of the Mercedes-Benz Corporate Run on April 28, 2011 in Miami.

The 5-kilometer race, now in its 26th year, drew over 21,000 runners and walkers from more than 600 companies and organizations throughout the area. Entrants made their way from Bayfront Park in Downtown Miami over the river and back again. This year’s race will be remembered for an odd occurrence: the Second Avenue drawbridge went up just as the lead group of participants was approaching. There was nothing to do but wait, before continuing on the 3.1-mile journey.

The Mercedes-Benz Corporate Run attracted over 21,000 runners and walkers from more than 600 companies and organizations throughout the area.

Team FIU had 56 athletes, including employees and students.

“Years ago, I used to run this race with my father’s company and I decided to get back in it again, this time representing FIU,” said Team FIU member Lauren Suarez-Diaz (MIB ’08, BBA ’05), assistant director of the Pino Global Entrepreneurship Center. “It was a great opportunity and I look forward to doing it again next year.”

Veronica Perez and Lauren Suarez-Diaz

Activities before-and-after the 5K extend the fun.

“The demographics for this event are the market we’re trying to reach—young professionals thinking about continuing their education,” said Luis Casas, director of marketing, communications and recruiting for the business school.

In Bayfront Park before and after the race, athletes and their companions enjoyed post-race camaraderie and fun in what some call the largest office party of the year. Almost 400 tents served up food, drink and fun handouts.

Race participants had the opportunity to have their photo taken at the FIU photo booth. Each photo was stamped with “FIU Downtown on Brickell” to highlight the university’s newest location.

The popular FIU Business reusable water bottles

“For FIU Business, we maximized our branding efforts by giving away labeled reusable water bottles, which were quite popular since everyone was pretty thirsty,” said Veronica Perez (BBA ’08), e-marketing coordinator for the college and race participant. “We also handed out postcards with information about texting for a chance to win a $10,000 scholarship.”

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