Bringing our A-Game

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The University of Alberta’s (U of A) A-Team made up of 32 full-time and part-time MBA students participated in the 2017 MBA Games hosted by Vancouver Island University (VIU) in Nanaimo, British Columbia. The games ran from January 2nd to January 5th, 2017 and 19 schools, along with approximately 500 participants from across Canada, came to Nanaimo to compete in various events based around academics, sport and spirit.

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The charity partner of this year’s MBA games was the Moose Hide Campaign, which is focused on men raising awareness to prevent violence against women and children. The theme of the weekend was about creating safe places and safe spaces. Two of the spirit components revolved around the charity partner, one being that each school had to raise a minimum of $1,000 for the charity partner. The 2017 MBA Games raised $150,000, which was then matched by the J. W. Connell Foundation, for a total of $300,000 raised for the Moose Hide Campaign.

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To kick off the MBA Games, students congregated together to cheer for their schools and show their team spirit with a two minute dance. Thanks to a very talented U of A student we were able to combine three genres of music into a unique performance. Students who normally shy away from the arts were able to express themselves through dance and get in touch with their Country, Bollywood and Michael Jackson selves. The A-Team crushed the dance and came in second after VIU!

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Day 1 of the 2017 MBA Games consisted of the mystery spirit event, dodgeball, basketball, and the three-hour Finance and Human Resource (HR) cases. Our case teams demonstrated their intellect through taking part in a gruelling competition against some of the finest schools in Canada. The dodgeball team made it to the playoffs and the basketball team blew everyone out of the water by finishing first overall! The mystery spirit event was focused on creating safe spaces and safe places around your university campus. The A-Team created a fantastic poster and an emotional presentation, which gave them a first place finish in the Day 1 mystery spirit event. We celebrated our successes that day with a cruise around Nanaimo and an impressive dance-off onboard the yacht.

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Day 2 of the 2017 MBA Games consisted of the mystery spirit event, volleyball, indoor soccer, and the marketing and strategy advance cases. Dedication to the case team was demonstrated by some team members not attending the festivities the night before in order to get a good night’s sleep for case day. The result was an impressive win from the marketing case team! Both the indoor soccer and volleyball teams made it into the playoffs, finishing third and fifth overall, respectively. The mystery spirit event was focused on designing and constructing a water filtration system out of recycled materials found around the town of Qualicum Beach. Each team was given $10 towards materials, but the A-Team decided to take the competition to the next level by only using recycled material and donating their money to a better cause. The A-Team created a unique filtration system using all recycled materials required and got a fourth place finish in the Day 2 mystery spirit event.

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Following the Day 2 events, teams were transported to Nanaimo to participate in a panel event on the topic of Truth and Reconciliation focused around the Moose Hide Campaign. After the panel event, teams went over to the Vancouver Island Conference Center for the Closing and Awards Ceremony.

The U of A competed in all events and did phenomenal, finishing third overall, with a runner up position in the spirit category. The Queen’s Cup stayed in Nanaimo as VIU was first in the spirit category, taking the new spirit award and finishing first overall.

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On January 5th some of the A-Team returned to Edmonton, while others took the ferry across to Vancouver to watch the Vancouver Canucks play the Calgary Flames on January 6th.

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Written by Shannon Higgins.