L-R: Paige, Charlotte, Isatu, Rachel and Ryan

A group of third year students spent a week at the University of Bucharest representing Edge Hill in an international competition and boosting their career prospects.

Thanks to help from the University’s Student Opportunity Fund, six students from Edge Hill’s Business School were given the chance to work with 115 students from ten European countries on marketing simulation exercise, Markstrat 2018.

L-R: Isatu, Paige, Kayleigh, Ryan, Rachel and Charlotte setting up the international buffet

Markstrat is a simulation game that lets players take control of a virtual corporation, making decisions in marketing, finance, research and development areas. It helps students put their classroom learning into practice in a safe, but realistic and highly competitive environment, enhancing their understanding of how theory relates to practice. It is played competitively with teams eagerly waiting to see whether their latest round of decisions have managed to outperform their competitors.

The students worked in teams of five, each team comprising students from five different European countries. Although the official language of the event is English, this put intercultural communication at the heart of the exercise as both differences in language and culture surfaced as the teams began to compete under pressure.

“Our marketing group won first place by analysing our outcomes and decisions in marketing mixes to outperform our competitors,” said International Business student Isatu Manka. “I learned leadership skills, such as being responsible for making the important decisions, and I maintained a good work environment by making sure everyone was involved in the project decisions.”

As part of their task, Edge Hill students, in their separate teams, were required to develop marketing strategies, analyse market research reports, make operational and strategic decisions, write reports and deliver group presentations.

Charlotte McKeown, who is studying for a BA (Hons) Marketing, said:

“I wanted to attend Markstrat in Bucharest as I have never done anything like this before and I thought it would provide me with knowledge about team work and working with students from different cultures. I also wanted to have something that would stand out on my CV for potential employers and I would be one of six students from England to have taken part in this process.

“This trip has enabled me to understand different cultures and the way they work and I have learnt that I can work under pressure with a group of people I have never met before, which I feel this will help me stand out when applying for jobs.”

The other students who took part were Paige Stevens, Rachel Sargent, Ryan Johnson and Kayleigh Glynn.

Fiona Syson, Senior Lecturer and Programme Leader for Marketing, who joined the students on their trip, said:

“It was a joy to see the Edge Hill students transform from nervous and unsure on day one to confident and assured team members by day five. They blossomed over the week as their confidence in both the simulation and cross cultural communication grew. It is one of those experiences that will differentiate our students from other candidates in a competitive jobs market. Plus they had a great time too!”

The Student Opportunity Fund ensures that costs are not a barrier to students making the most of their experience at Edge Hill, and it made this trip possible by paying for the students’ travel and accommodation costs. Find out more here.