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Innovative International Case Study Features UW College of Business Students

December 3, 2015

University of Wyoming students participated in a case study program with 625 students at universities around the world. The 17 UW students were involved in the project through a UW College of Business class, “Supply Chain Management.”

Taught by Barry Brewer, College of Business assistant professor of decision science, the project was a class exercise that incorporated globalization, critical thinking skills, data interpretation and analysis, and teamwork within student groups.

The case study was completed virtually, which meant student teams had to determine the best way to communicate around the world and across various time zones with their international counterparts. Each of the student teams, consisting of a blend of students from the various universities internationally, had nine days to develop and present its solution to a displaced faculty member using videoconferencing technology.

Launched as a pilot effort in 2011, collaborating with four universities to expose students to operate in a diverse, scattered group study case exercise, the international Global Workgroup Project has grown to include 12 U.S. universities and 14 international universities.

For the latest project, students were given a “Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals” case and asked to quantify three supply chains for a fictitious distribution center. The four-person groups identified and quantified the costs and risks associated with each supply chain and recommended the lowest total cost.

“Our millennial students are electronically connected,” Brewer says. “This was their chance to apply their skills and grasp of technology to overcome time, distance and language challenges to solve the types of problems that they will experience throughout their careers.”

The UW students who participated are: Joshua Brooksmith, Emili Milatzo and Michael Steege, all from Cheyenne; Anna Burback, from Casper; Sterling Eller, of Glendo; Tanner Harms, from Englewood, Colo.; Logan Isham, from Flint, Mich.; Krystal Karns, of Laramie; Rafe Kiely, of Wheaton, Ill.; and Adam Kinder, from Newport Beach, Calif.

Others were Jakob Koendgen, from Germany; Glenda Melendez, of St. Croix, Virgin Islands; Jason Mitchell, from Fort Collins, Colo.; Ryan Schutte, of Saratoga; Heather Tiffany, of Virginia Beach, Va.; Callie Torgerson, from Simi Valley, Calif.; and Joseph Tucker, from Louisville, Colo.

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