2008 Student Case Competition Winner
Azusa Pacific University

One of the highlights from this year's conference in Los Angeles was the 2nd Annual Student Case Competition. Eight teams totaling approximately 30 students competed for the grand prize of $1,000 and the title of "ILA Student Case Competition Winner." In what turned out to be a tightly contested competition, Sarah Chamberlain, Nichol Hibbard, and Greg Pereira, the team hailing from Azusa Pacific University, was crowned the winner during the conference closing.

The Winners, Sarah Chamberlain, Nichol Hibbard, and Greg Pereira from Azusa Pacific University, Approach the Stage as the Audience Erupts in Profuse Clapping

Speaking on behalf of his team, Greg described the case competition as an "outstanding opportunity to compete against leadership students from all over. I felt a great sense of pride in representing the MAOL [Masters of Arts in Organizational Leadership] program at Azusa Pacific University and I am proud that our program had the opportunity to shine on an international stage. The case study competition was a unique experience that allowed me to use the knowledge that I gained from the conference, and apply it in a creative and collaborative setting. This was an unbelievable experience."

Each team was given copies of the case competition in the kick-off meeting held on the first night of the conference. Teams were asked to analyze the case based on their knowledge of leadership fundamentals, and to incorporate their learnings from the conference sessions that they would attend. They were encouraged to speak with conference presenters and attendees to further enrich their experience. Finally, the teams were required to create a 20-minute presentation of their case analysis, which all teams presented Friday night at the conference.

The eight participating teams included Azusa Pacific Univ., Christopher Newport Univ., Claremont McKenna College, Kansas State Univ., two teams from Marietta College, Santa Clara Univ., and West Virginia Univ.

Three judges evaluated each team's case analysis based on a pre-determined grading rubric and a five-minute question and answer session following each presentation. The judges of this year's competition were Kabe Erkenrack, Special Education Coordinator and Registrar at The Field School; Eric Kaufman, Assistant Professor at Virginia Tech; and Teresa Martinelli-Lee, Director of Facilities and Food Services at BHS/American Recovery Center.

The Student Case Competition is organized each year by the Leadership Education Member Interest Group. Incoming Chair Sara Thompson described this year's Case Competition as "a wonderful experience for students to engage in the International Leadership Association Conference as well as apply the knowledge they are gaining through the concurrent sessions. This event can make the conference come alive for many students."

The sponsors of this year's competition were the Jepson School of Leadership Studies at the University of Richmond, and the McDonough Center for Leadership and Business at Marietta College. Sean Robinson of Argosy University organized the competition. Congratulations to Azusa Pacific University, and all of our Case Competition teams.