A group of University of Northern British Columbia business students are putting their leadership and critical thinking skills to the test this week at the annual JDC West 2017 competition at the University of Alberta in Edmonton Jan. 13-15.
The event pits 12 university business schools in Western Canada, including UNBC, against one another, competing in academic disciplines such as finance, entrepreneurship and international business. There is also an athletics and debate competition.
The UNBC WolfPack JDC West team hopes to build on the success it had in 2016 in Saskatoon where they brought home four trophies: first-place finishes in marketing, participation and fundraising and a second-place finish in finance.
The academic teams, comprised of three students each, were selected in April. At the competition, teams have three hours to solve a case and create a 20-minute presentation.
“We’ve been focusing on our academic teams, working with our coaches and focusing on what winning looks like,” said JDC West co-captain Terrance Badham. “It’s been about 10 to 15 hours a week of practice on top of school. “It will be fun and we’re really looking forward to showing what UNBC, just because we’re a small school, can do up here.”
Badham is a fourth-year Business student (Human Resources and finance) who joined the JDC West team in his first year as part of the debate team. He was part of the Human Relations team in 2016. As a co-captain along with Brendan Bellavance, they are not eligible to compete. They’re in charge of developing the team with practice and getting sponsorships and coaches.
David Schroeter is a third-year political science and business student who is in his first year competing with the WolfPack. He already had some friends on the team and had heard about how much fun it was.
This week, he’s part of the Not for Profit team competing in Edmonton.
“Being part of it is an incredible useful tool,” he said. “The community you get brought into is phenomenal. Everybody is so supportive as a team and for personal advancement. It’s all about making you and your team the best you can do.
“I’m incredibly excited and it’s an amazing opportunity to meet so many students from across B.C. and western Canada.”
The 2017 JDC West competition is the largest undergraduate business competition held every January that alternates between the 12 Western Canadian universities.
There are 48 undergraduate students on the UNBC team. The 10 academic teams include accounting, business strategy, entrepreneurship, finance, human relations, marketing, international business, management information systems, not-for-profit and tax.
There are four students on the debate team, four students on the social team and eight more on the athletics team.
To be eligible to compete on JDC West, they must be either working towards a major or minor in business.
JDC West teams are also expected to fundraise for charity over the course of the year. Once again, UNBC fundraised for the Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation.