Teams win awards in entrepreneurship, taxation, and accounting

Faculty of Management students from UBC Okanagan’s campus won three top-three finishes at JDC West, one of Canada’s largest business competitions. The teams won awards in three key categories: entrepreneurship, taxation, and accounting.

The Entrepreneurship Team, consisting of students Graeme Sailor, Nick Ross, and Jennifer Stolarchuk, won first place in a category that challenges competitors to create a new product or service addressing an identified market opportunity.

Coached by James Grieve from Nucleus Strategies and Sally Arkell-Boles from SunLife Financial, the Entrepreneurship Team pitched the concept of “Fluid,” an alternative distribution channel based on an Uber-style delivery model with the potential to deliver goods to customers on demand.

“The biggest thing we will take away from this experience is relationships, you make a lot of connections through the coaches and then through the competition, and the network opportunities are valuable,” says Sailor, team captain and third-year FoM student. “This real-world experience gives you more context for asking questions and enhanced value out of the class.”

The Taxation Team, consisting of Michelle Miller, Michael Bitcon, and Alex Little, placed second. The Accounting Team of Brad Curtiss, Cassidy Deering, and Adeet Haroon, finished in third place.

“The most rewarding part of the experience in coaching Jennifer, Graeme and Nick was seeing them grow both individually and as a team during the sessions when we worked with them,” says David Jenkins, a FoM Capstone Instructor. “A significant contributor to their success was their self-confidence in front of the judges. We were fortunate to have Sally and James as business coaches, adding their wealth of practical experience to the team.”

UBC’s FoM sent some 50 students to compete in JDC West, the largest business competition in Western Canada. Held in Saskatoon on Jan. 16 and 17, the event showcases academics, athletics, debate, and an out-of-the-box social competition with more than 600 students from 12 of western Canada’s top universities competing.

“We are very proud of how our students represented UBC Okanagan at the JDC West competition. They were committed and innovative, and these are capabilities that are highly sought-after in today’s management environment,” says FoM Dean Roger Sugden. “I congratulate the students on their achievements and offer my gratitude to our faculty and local businesses for mentoring all the participants. Success is achieved through collaboration, and this truly was a group effort.”