4 reasons to enter a student business competition
From gaining real-world experience to course credit, business competitions benefit students
Every year, Athabasca University (AU) students represent the Faculty of Business at regional, national, and international business competitions.
For students, these events offer a chance to test and improve practical skills in trading or presenting a business case. There are also valuable lessons to gain in terms of critical thinking skills, time management, and teamwork. These are all highly employable skills that you can add to your resume.
But you don’t have to take our word for it.
“Competing for AU at case competitions is something I would recommend for anyone looking to round out their skill set and get better at what they do,” said James Purdy, a member of AU’s 2022 case competition team.
We asked Purdy and other former AU competitors why students should consider joining a student competition team.
“Competing for AU at case competitions is something I would recommend for anyone looking to round out their skill set and get better at what they do.”– James Purdy, a member of AU’s 2022 case competition team
1. Gain real-world business experience
Competitions like the upcoming Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) Group University Trading Challenge allow competitors to face off against other students. You get to experience real-time futures trading in a simulated, professional electronic trading platform.
“It was a fantastic learning experience. It was great to get to interact with other like-minded individuals on the team. I would highly recommend it for anyone who wants to learn how markets trade,” said Byron Webb, who was a member of AU’s trading competition team in 2019.
2. Strengthen your teamwork and leadership skills.
For case competitions, such as the Alberta Deans of Business Case Competition and CPA Education Foundation Business Challenge, teams solve a business challenge for an organization and then present strategies and solutions to judges.
In both competitions, some firms even have case studies as a part of their interview process, so participating gives you a competitive edge in the job application process.
“It was a great learning experience and a great way to connect with other AU students and faculty. The knowledge gained from this process has been extremely beneficial,” said Lexie Pullman, a member of AU’s 2022 case competition team.
3. Get to know your peers and professors.
Students selected to compete on an AU team are guided by expert coaches at every step! Team members attend bi-weekly online meetings with Faculty of Business experts leading up to the trading or case competitions.
“The dedicated team of faculty and advisors involved with the case competitions were excellent and committed to helping all of us grow as students, communicators, and team members,” said Keith D. Pritchard, a member of the 2022 case competition team. “This is a significant undertaking, but well worth it for motivated individuals who want to challenge themselves to learn and improve.”
While the trading competition is entirely online, case competitions are typically held in person (depending on health restrictions in 2023). AU covers in-person competition expenses no matter where you call home!
4. You can earn course credit and cash prizes!
Beyond the real-world experience that comes from competing, there are other benefits. Students could also be eligible to gain course credits and win a variety of cash prizes.
Visit our Faculty of Business student competition page for more information.
“Our team, myself included, made the most out of this learning opportunity because the knowledge and experience we gained was worth exponentially more than the $10,000 top prize,” said Aleksandar Golijanin, a member of AU’s 2020 case competition team.
Applying is easy
To apply, email a letter of application and a current curriculum vitae (CV). If you’re not sure how to craft a CV, check out the AU Faculty of Business student competition page, pick the competition you’re interested in, and follow the instructions.
“Our team, myself included, made the most out of this learning opportunity because the knowledge and experience we gained was worth exponentially more than the $10,000 top prize”– Aleksandar Golijanin, a member of AU’s 2020 case competition team
Join a student business competition
AU is recruiting for the following student business competitions:
Learn more about schedules, agendas, and time commitments, or email with questions.