“Case solving is one of the most valuable experiences I have had during my study”

The ASR-students are preparing for the Rotterdam Case Competition which will be held in January. Radina Koycheva, one of the organizers of this competition, was happy to share her experience about case solving and organizing this competition. 

More than half a year ago Radina was successfully finishing her third year of International Business Management and it was time to choose a minor. She heard via her friends about the minor ‘All Stars Rotterdam’, a minor that is focussed on case solving and is supposed to be very challenging, innovative and interactive. During her third year of International Business Management, she already experienced a whole semester of case solving, that is why it wasn’t a difficult decision to choose this minor. 

From the moment Radina joined the ASR program she noticed that this way of learning was completely different than what she was used to. Even though the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences already has a practical approach, this was even more the case with All Stars Rotterdam. She told me – “Everyone has the freedom and is challenged to express their opinions and thoughts. There is a very open culture in this program and the barrier between student and teacher is very small.” 

Even though Radina comes from a very broad study (IBM), she realised that she was lacking some needed financial knowledge to solve a case. However, this was not a problem because the minor ASR always consists of a lot of different students from a lot of different studies. With every case there was always someone who was able to help Radina out with the financials and, the other way around, Radina was always able to help other team members with their struggles. This was a very collaborative approach which is also something that Radina loves about ASR.

Besides the different skillsets, Radina also found it very interesting to see all the different mentalities and perspectives coming from all of these different studies. She told me – “Everyone can learn something from each other. It is a very collaborative and educative environment and I find it very valuable to work with so many different people that have some many different expertise.”

Earlier this year Radina participated in her first case competition. Not just any competition, but the Lazaridis International Case Competition. Besides our own university, many other prestigious universities like Berkley University California and the University of Technology Sydney participated in this Canadian competition. Together with her team she managed to become first in her division and fourth overall! She remembers – “It was very challenging. I would say the thrill is huge and the process stressful, but also so rewarding. You get the opportunity to compete against top universities from all around the world. The pressure is high, but you learn so much and, in the end, the reward is definitely worth the effort.”

So far, Radina positively looks back at the last four months. Up until now, ASR taught her that case solving is more than just a process. She explains – “It is an entire activity where so many different things are involved, it requires capabilities that go beyond business. It is not just about marketing, operations and finance, but also critical thinking, time management, personal management, creativity and so much more.” She continues – “The things I’ve learned with case solving don’t only help me with my study, but also in my normal life and my future career. ASR has a very hands-on approach to show you what businesses are dealing with, what the problems are out there and, of course, how to find good solutions. I think that case solving will help me a lot in the future. All Stars Rotterdam has already been one of the most valuable experiences I have had during my study!”

Now, during the final phase of her minor, Radina is working hard and enthusiastically to organize an incredible case competition for all the students at the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences. My last question to her was – “Why someone who is not doing a business study should join the Rotterdam Case Competition?”. She answered – “I believe case solving and case competition is not just about business, it is about critical thinking, understanding your environment and so much more. You do not need to have a business background in order to be valuable. In the ASR-program we have a lot of students who do not come from a business study and they are beyond valuable to everyone. Case solving is a challenge that is rewarding for everyone who wants to test their own skills and their knowledge in general.”

Are you interested to compete in the RCC? You can apply by yourself, or with a team via this website https://rotterdamcasecompetition.nl/application/.

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