MHC Case Club tests business savvy with Cancarb judges

MHC Case Club tests business savvy with Cancarb judges

By ANNA SMITH
Local Journalism Initiative on February 10, 2024.

MHC Case Club tests business savvy with Cancarb judgesMHC Case Club tests business savvy with Cancarb judgesMHC students put together their proposal for the Cancarb Case Competition.–News Photo Anna Smith

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Students in the Medicine Hat College Case Club enjoyed a chance to try their hand at a real-world problem and apply their budding business administration expertise.

The club is designed to allow these students to apply knowledge in accounting, finance, management and marketing, to create solutions to real business problems, and this application was put to the test Thursday as club sponsor Cancarb visited to serve as guest judges for an internal case competition.

This competition consisted of a presentation on the nature of the company, before Chris Sawicki, Americas marketing representative for Cancarb, gave the club a business problem and locked two teams in separate rooms to come up with solutions.

It’s a wonderful opportunity to give back to an institution that has provided many of Cancarb’s own employees, said Sawicki.

“Probably around 80 per cent of our employees are MHC alumni,” said Sawicki. “It really offers myself, in the marketing side, an opportunity to speak to students that are in the same field, kind of give them some real-life situations, and help them think outside the box. I know when I was learning, to me, the best way for me to learn was hands on.”

While many students had done similar work internally, this is the first time they’ve had a real business come in this year to simulate further case competitions, which the students will be travelling to later.

“It’s kind of some real experience before we actually leave,” said business management student Lily Schaerer. “It’s really exciting to be able to do this for a real business.”

Each year, students are coached by instructors Miranda Davies and Dillon Batsel, working in teams to analyze business cases, create solutions and present, all within a time constraint. The students who perform best may be able to compete in the provincial Alberta Deans of Business Case Competition and national Vanier National Marketing Competition, which takes place in Montreal.

“We sincerely appreciate the generosity of Cancarb, allowing our students to reap the benefits of participating in case competitions,” says Davies. “Students who have participated in the past have said their experience in Case Club has allowed them to develop confidence in their work, interpersonal skills and public speaking experience, which they have carried forward with them throughout their careers. We’re excited to continue to mentor students through this program, thanks to this donation.”

Sawicki expressed he was excited to see what the workers of the future were going to bring to the table, and how important it is to have new minds and perspectives coming into fields like marketing and business consulting.

“Medicine Hat is pretty unique in a lot of ways,” said Sawicki. “We have some industries that not a lot of people are familiar with. So to be able to present this case study, I’m excited to hear the answers most, actually, I’m really excited to see what they come up with.”

“Cancarb appreciates the continued opportunity to provide support to Medicine Hat College and their student body,” says Brad Thompson, director of global sales and marketing for Cancarb. “Experiential learning is an important aspect of the education process and one that will carry on as students filter out into their professions.

“As a local business servicing a global customer-base in several different industries, Cancarb should provide a unique and engaging case study for the students.”