Seattle has many unique qualities. In addition to the temperate climate and the breathtaking mountain views, the city also is perhaps the biggest hub for Global Health work compared to anywhere else in the world. The field of Global Health utilizes the talents and ingenuity of all disciplines and constantly requires collaboration to find better solutions. Students at the University of Washington recognize this and many hope to one day find a career in this industry. Despite their enthusiasm, students sometimes struggle to find ways to engage directly. Last year several groups at the University recognized this gap and sought a way to bridge it.
When different members of the university began to meet, they quickly identified a case competition as a perfect medium through which to connect students across campus. The goal of a case competition is not only to practice business skills, but also to share and exchange ideas. Whereas case competitions traditionally involved only business students, the unique topic of global health provided a perfect forum for students of all backgrounds to participate. All of this work culminated in the inaugural Global Health Business Case Competition (GHBCC) held on Saturday, January 23rd in PACCAR Hall.
The day’s sun rose behind a solid grey wall of clouds to the sound of pouring rain. The campus was empty save for a dozen or so men and women winding their way through campus into Paccar Hall.
Never before had the University of Washington witnessed a competition that brought together students with majors ranging from Business to Engineering to Health Sciences, from Public Health to Environmental Studies to International Studies, all towards the purpose of providing a forum of discussion for the health problems our world faces today and how businesses can form part of the solution.
And a forum it was, for while the nineteen teams were short of sleep, their presentations demonstrated the passion with which they competed. There were interdisciplinary teams, a team comprised of but one member, teams in which no member had experience with case competitions, and yet the quality of their presentations and the discussions that followed provided inspiration to those who looked on.
The difficult challenge posed to the judges was picking only three teams to rank as the winners, because it was clear to all that each team had brought something unique to the case, something insightful or original. It was these things that honored the competitors, the judges, and in fact the whole UW as they are exactly what is needed from our next world leaders to contribute to society.
Congratulations to the teams who placed in the inaugural Global Health Business Case Competition!
The Global Health Business Case Competition was facilitated by the Foster School of Business Global Business Center, with the collaborative effort of the following organizations:
- Global Business Center (GBC): The GBC is committed to providing students with numerous international business opportunities including case competitions and study abroad programs.
- Department of Global Health: Bridges the schools of Medicine and Public Health, with a mandate to harness the expertise and interdisciplinary power of all 16 UW schools and colleges.
- UW Rotoract: A UW student organization committed to service and community involvement
- Global Case Competition Club (GC3): A UW student organization devoted to practicing and preparing for international case competitions
- Montlake Consulting Group (MCG): A UW student run consultancy dedicated to working with businesses in the Seattle area.