OC business students snag silver
Rob Gibson - Mar 17, 2023 - Biz Releases

Photo: Contributed
(L to R): Eric Worman, Kimberly Cornell and Nicole Benevides.

A trio of Okanagan College students stand with the best in the world after placing second in the Royal Roads’ University Design Thinking Challenge.

The competition offers teams of undergraduate business students an opportunity to contribute to a real-world challenge.

This year’s event tackled the question of how non-profit thrift stores might become spaces that further bolster inclusivity and community.

Kimberly Cornell, Eric Worman and Nicole Benevides joined forces to create solutions for the Victoria non-profit organization Beacon Community Services.

“I’m so proud of the work we did in this challenge,” Cornell said. “We’re a small college, but we’re consistently standing with some of the best on the world stage. I’m so proud to have had a chance to represent Okanagan College and show people what we can do. This challenge was nostalgic for me. I loved having the opportunity to support Beacon Community Services, who’s doing so much good in my hometown.”

Their project proposed a “newcomer neighbour” volunteer program to connect locals and immigrants through social activities.

Six teams of undergraduate students from post-secondary schools in Canada, the U.S. and France took part in the challenge. In order to win the competition, students were encouraged to think beyond typical marketing solutions and present new and innovative ways to redesign the thrifting experience to be more inclusive.

“To me, taking part in this challenge was interesting as it was a different way of applying what we have been learning in our classes,” Worman said. “I enjoy the fact that at OC I have strong relationships with many of the professors and know most of my peers. It makes it easy to learn.”

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