Five-day challenge puts MBA student skills to the test

Ambiguity, teamwork tussles, time constraints, and the added pressure of real-world clients combined for a gruelling and educational challenge for master’s students of business last week.

The Odette MBA Class of 2017 spent five days presenting to five clients on five topics, May 4 to 8. Neither the clients nor the topic is known in advance to the participants, who must consider consumer behaviour issues across a broad spectrum of industries during Clinic Week, the brainchild of MBA program director Vincent Georgie.

It proved a tremendous learning experience, the students said afterward.

“Over the course of the five clinic days, it was amazing to see how much everyone improved in terms of both presentation skills and time management skills,” said Jelena Dereta.

Her classmate Vito Giovannetti said students learned about quality management and the power of team cohesion.

“Each of the five engagements brought different strategies,” Giovannetti said. “MBA Clinic Week was an experience that enabled students to learn about themselves and the art of leveraging skill sets to recognize each client’s need and work together to develop creative solutions.”

This year’s clients included Windsor Regional Hospital, furniture retailer Tepperman’s, major junior ice hockey team Saint John Sea Dogs, online insurance broker Easy Insure, and the Toronto International Film Festival.

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