Life as an MBA can be an eventful journey. I have been on this journey at Smurfit for the last 5 months and I can definitely say that it has been an enriching experience. I have met interesting people, gained valuable knowledge and visited exciting places. One of the best things to have happened to me during this short duration was my selection in the team which represented Smurfit School at the John Molson MBA International Case Competition held in Canada. Apart from me there were five other students in the team namely, Conor O’Donovan, Michael Munevar, Ian Nolan, Dita Zavrelova and Francis Pérez Colomina. Our team was a blend of different cultures with one American, one Czech, one Indian, one Spanish and two Irish people on board. Our team had to win an internal competition at Smurfit to get this opportunity to represent the school at such a prestigious competition. I feel all the more privileged as I was the only Full-Time MBA student in the team, the rest happened to be from the Part-Time Executive MBA program.
The competition was held in Montreal from 6th-11th January and was organized by the John Molson School of Business at Concordia University. 36 teams representing 14 countries from 5 continents participated in this competition. An interesting fact about the competition was the presence of over 250 judges (most of whom were well established leaders from the business and management world) to judge the presentations. Our team was accompanied by Professor Pat Gibbons, who acted as the academic coach for the team. The competition involved solving business problems of global companies. Each team was given 3 hours to read a 20-25 page case and prepare a 20 minute presentation giving recommendation on how to resolve that problem. The presentation was followed by a 15 minute question session by the judges. The learning was as much from solving our own case as it was from observing other teams present the case. Our team had a decent run in the competition and one more win would have taken us to the semi-finals.
In between solving business cases we took out time to attend various networking events scheduled by the organizers where we got the opportunity to mingle with our counterparts from other business schools. Some of these events also provided us opportunity to meet industry leaders and interact with them on a one to one level. Some of us did take out time to go around and experience the snow clad Montreal city. Despite our decent performance the competition the learning and exposure the competition provided was worthwhile. I believe this is just a start and I will have many more exciting opportunities and experiences in the coming 7 months of this journey.
– Rahul Jindal, FT MBA 2012/13