Sackville, N.B.: J.D. Irving, Limited (JDI) has partnered with Mount Allison to give students an opportunity to solve a real-life business case. Over the past eight years, JDI has sponsored IT, Finance, Supply Chain, and Marketing case study competitions. Our eight university partners include: Acadia University, Dalhousie University, Saint Mary’s University, Université de Moncton, Mount Allison University, Saint Francis Xavier University, and the University of New Brunswick (both Fredericton and Saint John Campuses). To date, over 3,800 talented students have participated.
"Few things are more valuable for learning business than experiencing the workplace first-hand,” said William Waterman, Assistant Professor, Mount Allison University. “By partnering with J.D. Irving, Limited, a real-world case is presented, bringing the students into a real-world scenario and affords them the opportunity to enhance their skill-set toolbox to be the business leaders of tomorrow."
At the Direct Exchange Case Competition, teams of three to four students are presented with a real-life scenario at JDI, including the relevant data and conditions that a JDI manager was facing at the time. After research and analysis, the teams each suggest a solution, complete with the logic to support their decision. Teams were judged based on content completeness, presentation skills, and responses to specific questions posed by the judges.
|Photo of winning team (Left to Right): Jason Simon (Branch Manager, Chandler Sales), Sébastien Engelmann (student), Jim Jordan (Vice President of Supply Chain, J.D. Irving, Limited), Bradley Fuller
Mount Allison’s winning team of Sébastien Engelmann, Bradley Fuller, and Philip Dewar were presented with a cash prize.
The Direct Exchange Case Competition is an excellent learning tool, giving students an experience they would not otherwise get in class. “Having the experience of learning from senior management puts us in a better position to be able to meet their expectations of us when we come out of school,” Said Philip Dewar, fourth year commerce student and member of the winning team.
A case competition can also be the start of a career. “Five years ago, I competed in a case competition at Mount Allison,” said Jason Simon, Branch Manager, Chandler Sales. “My team won that case and I was offered a job.” This year, Simon was one of the judges for the case competition. 73 Mount Allison Alumni currently work for J.D. Irving, Limited – Simon is one of 63 that work in New Brunswick.
“We believe the program’s slogan: ‘Real Business, Real Learning, Real Growth’ continues to be an ideal description of what this case competition format is all about. We highly value the partnerships that have been established with the faculty at each university; it is their willingness that allows the Direct Exchange Program to succeed,” said Jim Jordan, Vice President Supply Chain, J.D. Irving, Limited.
“It’s great to share local Atlantic Canadian business practices with university students,” said Jordan. “This dialogue allows our young business leaders of tomorrow to explore the outstanding career potential that exists in our region today.”
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