The Big Salad, Madonna University launch ‘Seal the Deal’ business education project

Student teams compete for best new product honors

The Big Salad, Madonna University launch 'Seal the Deal' business education project
John Bornoty, The Big Salad Founder and CEO.

The Big Salad is teaming up with Madonna University, Livonia, Mich., to introduce a new reality-based learning project for the school’s business majors.

“Seal the Deal” is a semester-long project in which teams of students compete to create, design, test, and market a new menu product for The Big Salad. According to John Bornoty, The Big Salad founder and CEO, the concept was successfully piloted at Grosse Pointe North High School, and is now being introduced at the university level in for-credit courses.

“Seal the Deal” student teams meet in groups, in classroom settings, and on-site at The Big Salad Novi location, 43168 Grand River Ave., to develop, test, and market their menu creations.

The four teams will have the opportunity to market their proposed menu items during the weeks of March 28 and April 4, with the winning team to be announced at the university on April 11.

“We’re pleased to have the opportunity to have this partnership with The Big Salad as part of our continuing work to provide our students with more reality-based learning experiences,” said Dr. Cleamon Moorer, dean of Madonna University’s School of Business.

Students in the Principles of Marketing course taught by Nidhal Bouazizi, Madonna University Assistant Professor, International Business, are participating in the “Seal the Deal” experience. “Students are showing great enthusiasm for this opportunity to put into practice what they are learning in the classroom about marketing,” he said.

The Big Salad, Madonna University launch 'Seal the Deal' business education projectSince opening its first location in 2008, The Big Salad has allowed people to make their meal their own. Through thoughtful planning, The Big Salad chefs are equipped to prepare more than 17 million possible iceberg, romaine or spinach salad combinations for customers right at the point of purchase with a choice of 40 toppings and 30 dressings. Additionally, The Big Salad offers a plethora of fresh sandwich and soup options, as well as putting any salad into a wrap. Currently, The Big Salad can be found in Ann Arbor (now two locations), Grosse Pointe Woods, Novi, Troy, and Charlotte. The restaurant chain has plans to open 100 stores in strategically located metro areas across the country in the next 10 years. Learn more at

Liberal arts education, career preparation and service-learning have been the hallmarks of Madonna University since 1937. Conveniently located at I-96 and Levan Road in Livonia, Madonna offers more than 100 undergraduate and 30 graduate programs in the colleges of arts and humanities, science and mathematics, social sciences, education, and nursing and health, as well as the School of Business and the Graduate School. Michigan’s most affordable, independent, Catholic university, Madonna welcomes students from diverse backgrounds. Learn more at