Feb. 19, 2019Print | PDF
Last week, four undergraduate students from the Lazaridis School of Business & Economics competed against 19 other well-recognized business schools from around the world in the University of Florida’s Heavener International Case Competition (HICC).
Samantha Sells, Daniel Roytman, Ruslan Nikolaev and Stephany Desroches impressed judges, faculty and fellow competitors, ultimately winning silver overall. The students were selected from within the JDCC team and coached by Associate Professor Sofy Carayannopoulos and Srin Sridharan (BBA '14).
"I was incredibly impressed by how quickly the students were able to ramp up," said Carayannopoulos. "It’s a testament to how smart they are and how hard they work. Their performance has added to Laurier’s international brand recognition and equity. I am very proud of them."
The invitation-only competition draws applications from around the world. This was the first year the Lazaridis School was invited, joining schools from Oceania, Europe, Asia and North America.
"I was incredibly impressed by how quickly the students were able to ramp up. It’s a testament to how smart they are and how hard they work."
The week consisted of a couple of days of social activities and four days of intense case competition. Schools were first placed into one of four divisions.
In round one, students had five hours to resolve a case on Sesco. Instead of a traditional presentation, they had five minutes to communicate their recommendation “board-room style” while sitting across from the judges and using only a consulting placemat (one letter-size sheet of paper) for visual support. This was followed by 15 minutes of questions. The Lazaridis School team ranked first in its division.
"We were all really excited to compete in Florida for the first time," said Sells. "The format of the competition was completely different from ones we had done in the past. It really challenged us to distill our ideas while still having all the rigorous details ready for the strenuous Q and A periods. It took a lot of hard work, but we all found it very rewarding as this format is more reflective of 'real life' business meetings."
"It was great to take our learning from Laurier, apply it to cases that other schools were tackling and see our respective strengths and weaknesses. It was a unique learning opportunity that has enhanced my undergraduate experience."
The second-round case was on Northrop Grumman. Students had 26 hours to research and develop solutions and had 10 minutes and 15 slides to communicate their recommendations. The top team from each division advanced to finals and had to deliver their solutions in five minutes followed by a 25-minute question period.
"The experience was amazing – it challenged and enabled us to measure our performance against international schools," said Roytman. "It was great to take our learning from Laurier, apply it to cases that other schools were tackling and see our respective strengths and weaknesses.
"It was a unique learning opportunity that has enhanced my undergraduate experience, especially learning to approach problems in high-pressure environments and seeing how others internationally do it as well."