3rd Annual Alberta Not-for-Profit Case Competition

The Cause

We are the Alberta Not-for-Profit Case Competition (ANPCC), and our idea aims to educate students and not-for profit groups about the tangible links that can be formed between the two parties. As a Business club at the University of Alberta, our goal is to \"build relationships between the academic and business community and not-for-profits (NFPs), open students’ eyes to the incredible opportunities there are in the NFP sector, while simultaneously providing students with a once-in-a-lifetime learning experience through the competition.\" This is primarily done through \"our dynamic case competition, [where] competitors will be challenged in several ways, and are offered the unique opportunity to channel their strategic and business background to provide a real solution, to a real problem, faced by a real not-for-profit organization in Edmonton.\" During the four day Case Competition, delegates from Canada and the United States also participate in a Poverty Simulation (run by the United Way), listen to speakers from various positions in the NFP sector, and tour the partner organization. In previous years, partner organizations have included the Kids With Cancer Society, and Youth Empowerment and Support Services. Furthermore, ANPCC has several other events throughout the year to compliment the case competition. This includes, but is not limited to, a Not-for-Profit Symposium in the Fall, where numerous NFPs are invited to the University campus to showcase their organization and educate the students on their work in the Edmonton community. This also allows for students of all faculties to research and communicate with NFPs, with the possibility of future volunteer or work opportunities. As well, our club is planning on presenting another Not-for-Profit Speaker Series, where a number of executives of local NFPs are brought in to speak about the unique achievements and obstacles that their organization deals with.

Who Will it Benefit?

Although it may seem like the Case Competition only really benefits our partner organization, our club\'s reach is much more widespread. Over the past year, ANPCC has worked with about 40 different not-for-profit organizations. Whether it be through our two Symposiums, the Speaker Series, or our Case Competition, each and every organization has had a bonafide chance to promote and educate students about the valuable and viable not-for-profit sector. The students gain insight into these organizations, and the fact that they can have a rewarding and impactful career, despite being out of the for-profit world. For the many speakers and case competition judges that are involved, our activities present a worthwhile audience for them to share their passion and route to the NFP side of business. In turn, the establishment and maintenance of these connections between students and NFPs, and between like-minded individuals from various NFPs, is bound to have a positive effect on the Edmonton community as a whole. Lastly, it is worth elaborating on the lasting impact our Case Competitions have on our partner organizations. For a small, locally-situated NFP like the Kids With Cancer Society, the feedback that they receive in the form of suggestions from the competing teams is invaluable. After having time to prepare a fifteen minute presentation to a panel of judges, these students are explicitly improving their public speaking and critical thinking skills, whilst implicitly offering valid solutions for our partner organization. At a fraction of the cost that a consulting firm would charge, these NFPs have exclusive access to some of the brightest ideas and most articulate minds that North American universities have to offer.