2008 Texas Case Competition Part 3

Our team did a fabulous job for their presentation. They had a great strategy that seemed to work well. During this competition the judges can start asking questions after 3 minutes into the presentation. Although nerve racking they answered them well and were able to switch back and forth between the presentation and the questions effortlessly.

Although the team didn’t get much sleep during their 57 hours of study, they were very sharp on their delivery. After prelims they had us wait quite a while before they announced the winners. Well, we did not make finals, the team took the news well, but they were still disappointed. We did have the opportunity to be debriefed, and the comments were extremely favorable. The judges said that the one thing that held them back was that they had not flushed out their target market.

We did listen to the finals and that was quite an experience. There were many questions posed, and it was a very tough judging session. The team that won was the University of Hong Kong.

Our team was now able to relax and enjoy the fun. As usual the Cal team showed great networking skills and had a fabulous last night in Austin.

Posted by Dinko Lakic for Janet Amador

Happy Halloween

I had an awesome Halloween! I started off at the Bear’s Lair where me and a few friends Beat the Clock. We sat outside and shared some pizza, pitchers, and pommes frites. Quite a few people were dressed up at Bear’s Lair. Speed Racer was there and so was Captain Crunch. Angelina Jolie was there, and then Lara Croft showed up and we were sure they were going to duke it out, haha. Most of us stayed there until around 7ish and then we started to leave so we could get to our Halloween parties. I put my costume on and and headed to a party hosted by some graduate students (The Wife is a Ph.D. student).

I had fun! There were plenty of snacks and adult refreshments. Everyone wore a costume! That always makes for a better Halloween party because sometimes people show up without a costume, and that’s kinda sucky. Why even bother showing up if you’re not going to dress up? The costumes people wore at the party were very creative. There was a Viking there with a He-Man sword whose costume looked very authentic. There was a lady dressed up as a MacBook playing a pirated movie. haha, I don’t think I can describe that one in detail, but it was hilarious. I saw Pebbles from the Flinstones and there was also a couple who dressed up as Jack & Jill, and the entire night they clung to a bucket with “pail of water” sharpied on to it.

2008 Texas Case Competition Part 2

It has been very quiet here in Austin as the 23 teams prepare for the competition tomorrow morning. Yesterday the students had the opportunity to meet with some Dell representatives for a Q&A session. I am sure that they would have wanted to ask more in depth questions, but they were kept to the basics.

The students; Cecelia Lau, Audrey Leung, Clifford Tsang and Milan Agarwal have been closed up in their rooms since Wednesday night, only to be released at their presentation time at 10:20 on Saturday. 58 hours of prep! Our division includes the following teams: USC, Norwegian School of Management, University of British Columbia, Simon Fraser, and the University of Alberta.

The finals will be held tomorrow night, so if we make it our team will have quite a busy day. One of the biggest differences about this competition is that after 3 minutes of their presentation they are allowed to be interrupted by a judge with a question. This pattern can go on until the last 3 minutes of the presentation when they are giving their conclusion. That is a very tough format and I know that no one is looking forward to that part.

So,I wish I could say that the team will enjoy Halloween here in Austin. According to the sources here, Halloween is a very big deal. We will see what we can do tomorrow night to celebrate!

Posted by Dinko Lakic for Janet Amador

2008 Texas Case Competition Part 1

On the first day of our case competition, we have settled into picturesque Austin, the capital of Texas. The Executive Center, where we are staying is within walking distance of the campus, so we went on a walking tour of the area. The campus is really beautiful, and in many ways similar to UCB. The population is close to 50,000 students.

After our walk we met for the opening dinner and the release of the case. The case is regarding Dell computers, and how Dell “should adjust strategy to respond to the changing realities that we face today.” So the team is off to their room, ready to tackle the case. Tomorrow we will have the opportunity to meet with the reps from Dell to answer questions about the case while they eat Texas BBQ. Our team will present at 10:20 on Saturday morning.

Our division includes the following teams:

  1. UC Berkeley
  2. USC
  3. Simon Fraser
  4. University of Alberta
  5. University of British Columbia
  6. Norwegian School of Management

Posted by Dinko Lakic for Janet Amador

Early Bird Internship Fair

Just got back from the Early Bird Internship Fair. Juniors filled the Pauley Ballroom from 12-4 to see if they could find an internship for the Summer. I snapped some pictures of the crowd and a few banners that were up.

Blizzard was there! All you gamers know who they are. Diablo II, Warcraft, WOW, and who could forget Starcraft. Unfortunately, they were only looking for Computer Science types today, oh well, maybe next time.

The Few, The Proud, The Marines were there looking for the future leadership of the Marine Corps. Truly an elite force.

And MillerCoors was there. Talking with the recruiter I found out that the manufacturers of Miller and Coors beers merged in July.

<— Cal students in action. In addition to these companies, Chevron, Oracle, Craigslist, Cornerstone, Deutsche Bank, FTI Consulting, Johnson & Johnson, Microsoft, Philip Morris, Research In Motion (yay BlackBerrys), Disney, and many more were there too.

MBA Panel and Dinosaur Meat

Last night was MBA Panel night. Wharton, MIT, Columbia and, of course, Haas admissions officers were here to talk about what the MBA application process is all about. Each school talked a little about their individual application processes, then the audience got to ask the panel questions. With a half-hour to spare, the schools’ representatives each went to tables in different parts of the room so that students could continue to ask questions or ask questions that maybe were only relevant to one school in particular. The event had a lot of yummy food (cheeses, salsa, guacamole, little chocolate desserts and these skewers that looked like dinosaur meat but tasted mighty fine). It was interesting to find out that all of the schools encourage students to apply in their last year of undergrad if the student feels that they’re ready for an MBA. I was under the impression that you needed to have work experience, but they all seemed to want to dispel that myth.

Bringing Home the Gold – Back from Hong Kong!

Hello everyone!

This is Sagar Gupta, a member of the Haas Case Competition Team that recently won First Place at the 2008 Citi International Case Competition (CICC) and also the winner of the “Best Presenter” award. Since many of you probably have enough reading to do for classes (I sure do…), I figured I could rather share our story (for now) through pictures rather than words. But for those of you interested in learning more about the case competition itself, Haas has already posted an excellent Press Release on the main website:


Some quick background on the case competition…
-This is the first time Haas has won CICC – the first “First Place” win for Haas at any international case competition in 10 years!!
-18 universities from around the world
-Case Company: Ocean Park – a popular amusement park in Hong Kong
-26 Hours allotted for case preparation…that’s it!
-Judging panel consisted of Ocean Park CEO, VPs, Citi Managing Directors, HKUST professors, and many more…
-We had a little free time before/after the case to have some fun in the city…

I’d like to give special recognition to my fellow team mates: Wei Li, Sean Huang, and Jimmy Shi. From Cisco-Deloitte to CICC, I’m honored to work with my fellow brothers to succeed and represent Haas and UC Berkeley on a global scale. And of course, I must recognize Ms. Janet Amador, the Director of UG Admissions/Operations who accompanied us on our trip and was ridiculously supportive all throughout the adventure–thanks!

Now for the pictures!

At Citi’s HQ in Hong Kong.
Left to right: Sean Huang ’09, Jimmy Shi ’10, Janet Amador, Sagar Gupta ’10, Wei Li ’09.

View from HKUST apartment we stayed at

One of the best stores Hong Kong has to offer….G2000! Clearly some of us were exhausted after a long day of shopping there…ha.

Go Bears!!!

View from the top of the Citi building (Central – Hong Kong)


Final presentation to judges

Celebrating victory with the students from Korea University in Lan Kwai Fong (clubbing district)

Plenty more on my Facebook (if you’re friends with me, of course). And of course, feel free to contact me with any questions about the Haas Case Competition Team program.

See you all back in class!