One year ago, Daniela Aguilera and Julia Welch registered for the Association for Supply Chain Management (ACSM) Case Competition as soon-to-be Weatherhead graduates with little expectations for the outcome. What they didn’t realize, however, is what that following year would bring them: second runner ups in the prestigious global competition.
The ASCM Case Competition, in collaboration with Deloitte Consulting LLP, provides student teams with an opportunity to participate in a best-in-class global event. They learn to enhance and test their supply chain knowledge by working on end-to-end challenges drawn from company experiences.After winning the first and second rounds of the competitions in their region and beating out more than 470 other teams from schools across the world, it was time for the final round of the competition in September in Las Vegas. In addition to Weatherhead, the finals consisted of six other teams:
- George Brown College, Toronto, Canada
- Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
- Harvey Mudd College, Claremont, California
- India Institute of Technology, Kharagpur
- Jacobs University, Bremen, Germany
- Tecnológico de Monterrey Campus Queretaro, Mexico
These seven teams were given a new case to work through, analyze and develop a solution. They then presented to the Deloitte and ASCM judges. From there, the top three teams were selected that day to move on to the final round where they presented in front of ASCM conference attendees including supply chain industry professionals, ASCM board members, Deloitte consultants and the judges panel. Grading was based on the understanding of the problem, the solution proposed, supply chain knowledge application and executive presentations.
“We were competing against other highly qualified teams,” Aguilera said. “Some other team members had consulting experience in recognized firms or they have been winners in other competitions, so being called for the final round was amazing and fulfilling. After the final round, we were thrilled to find out we won second runner-up of the whole competition.”
Now graduated and in their full-time jobs, Aguilera and Welch say that this competition helped shape them into the professionals that they are today.
“I think presenting in front of large groups and needing to concisely explain your thinking will continue to be a valuable skill throughout our careers regardless of what paths we take,” Welch said. “Participating in the competition allowed us to meet many people, both students and professionals in the field, interact with them and learn from them.”
The pair encourages students to get involved early in professional organizations and get outside of your comfort zone.
“Seize the moment and take the opportunities as they come,” Aguilera said.
Learn more about the ASCM Case Competition in collaboration with Deloitte.
Learn more about the Operations Research and Supply Chain Management Program at Weatherhead.