Business

Kwantlen Polytechnic University students finish tops

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A team of university business students is off to Singapore in April.

Steven Vu, Larisa Gorodetsky and Anny Chen, who are part of the Kwantlen Polytechnic University school of business, earned that right after placing first at the 2012 CaseIT Undergraduate Business Case competition.

Nearly 80 university teams entered the preliminary competition with the top 16 — featuring teams from Indiana University, UBC, Queen’s, Carnegie Mellon and National University of Singapore — competing earlier this month in Vancouver.

CaseIT is an annual international undergraduate business case competition focused on Management Information Systems (MIS) and designed to find the best and brightest in strategic case analysis. Students from various backgrounds in information technology and business showcase their skills in teamwork, problem solving, and critical thinking to a panel of industry professionals. This year’s competition dealt with security, its role in business success, and the obligations to protect a company’s stakeholders, bottom line and future. The panel of judges included representatives from companies such as Coast Capital Savings, CGI, Orbis Financial Planning, SAP, and CIOVAN.

“Identifying information is hidden, so the judges don’t know where you’re from—they simply choose the team that’s best,’” Vu said.

“Once you level the playing field like that, it’s about skill and what you know.”

School of business faculty and team coach Robert Wood echoed that sentiment, saying, “The team truly turned in a first-class performance.”

According to School of Business Dean Dr. Arthur Coren, “Case competitions enrich the undergraduate experience. They blend theory with practice and give students an opportunity to apply their learning. It’s one of the many ways we develop students who are ready to work and ready to lead.”

“The competition makes it all very real,” said team member Larisa Gorodetsky said, “Working under pressure really makes you think and perform.”

This year’s CaseIT competition was the largest yet, with 80 teams representing universities from all over the world, including Canada, the United States, Germany, Australia, Lebanon, Indonesia and others. In the words of B.C. Premier Christy Clark, the competition “is a great way for the brightest minds to apply their skills, expand their horizons and network, as they prepare for their future roles in our society.”

The next stop for the award-winning team will be the APEX Business-IT Global Case Challenge in Singapore.

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