Old Collegian First Otago Medical Student to Enter CASE Competition

At the recent CASE competition in North America, an Otago University team came out on top, which included the first Otago medical student.

Old Collegian Chris Sadler, who is currently studying medicine, competed in the 2015 Scotiabank International CASE competition for Otago alongside Jeremy O’Connor (Economics and Finance), George Lill (Accounting and Finance) and Tim Saunders (Accounting and Finance).

Hosted by the Ivey Business School at Western University in Ontario, Canada, the Otago team tied for first place with National University of Singapore, the current world champions.

It may be a strange choice to have a medical student compete in such a competition, but coach Dr John Guthrie, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Marketing, disagrees. 

“Chris came in to CASE competitions because his flatmate did one and thought it was fantastic. He worked hard at it, did well, got selected. Chris brings a great non-business perspective to the team.

“Multidisciplinary teams are the way to go. Many of my teams have Law students in them – they add something extra to the team. The advantage is the fresh perspective they bring."

Chris believes he brought key “problem-solving skills and reductionist thinking to the table”.

“In medicine, my job is to decide what the problem is for the patient, and to formulate a management plan so they can get well again. Essentially, a business case is approached in the same manner where a team identifies a company’s issues and resolves them."

Chris thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity. “I relish the incredible bonds I was able to form not only with inspiring and charismatic colleagues from around the world, but also with my fellow teammates. It was a powerful experience, and pushed us all way out of our comfort zones.”