Beedie Strikes Gold at JDC West

Jan 27, 2017

Beedie’s successful JDC West Team (Photograph: Julian Fok)

A team of undergraduates at the Beedie School of Business produced a series of outstanding performances at this year’s JDC West case competition, winning three gold medals and securing podium finishes in three further categories. The team won first place in the Human Resources, Not-for-Profit, and Skit categories; second place in Taxation; and third place in both the Entrepreneurship and Intro Video competitions.

JDC West is a prestigious case competition that has run since 2006, bringing together around 600 undergraduate delegates from twelve of the leading business schools across Western Canada to compete in a range of disciplines, including academics, debate and athletics. This year’s competition took place over three days from January 13 to 15, 2017, at the University of Alberta in Edmonton.

The Beedie team, led by co-captains Jordan Binotto and Joy Marlinga, comprised 51 undergraduate students studying at the school, supported by faculty advisor Christian Vanhuizen and many other coaches and alumni, who gave their time to help the team prepare during a rigorous seven month training program.

“Winning in three categories, with a total of six podium places, is a phenomenal achievement,” says Casey Dorin, Executive Director of Undergraduate Programs at the Beedie School of Business. “The students put in a huge amount of work in preparation for JDC West, as did many coaches, faculty and alumni who supported them, and it is a real pleasure to see their efforts rewarded in this way. What is particularly impressive is that we fielded a very young team this year, and many of the students are planning to compete again next year, which bodes well for our future success.”

As well as their performances over the weekend of competitions, there is a fundraising and volunteering component to JDC West, and Beedie’s team raised approximately $4,000 for charity and racked up over 200 hours of volunteer time.

For team co-captain Joy Marlinga, competing provides a huge opportunity for personal development and building professional skills, but what sets JDC West apart from other competitions is the closeness of the bonds formed among competitors.

“What motivates me most is how closely the team pulls together. People describe it to you, but before you go, you don’t have a sense of what it’s like,” says Marlinga, who was participating in her second JDC West event. “After I’d gone once, I wanted to experience that tightness as a team again, but extend it across the entire year as a co-captain.”

She also emphasizes the work put in by the wider team of coaches, alumni, faculty and staff: “They provide us with all the resources we need, and a lot of emotional support as well. The competitors practise every week, but each team has two or more coaches and they put in at least as much work, fitting it in around jobs and busy schedules. We can’t ever thank them enough.”