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Bringing real-world learning to students is something that we take very seriously, but that doesn’t mean we can’t make the experience fun! Last July 20, we teamed up with apparel company DETERMINANT to hold the Real World Challenge on the metaverse! Students from different parts of the world came together in their best avatars to solve an authentic business problem. Here are some of our favorite moments!
Exploring the Gather space
Online classes and Zoom meetings may not be so novel anymore, but holding the Real World Challenge on Gather definitely made the usual virtual interactions more fun. The contestants had fun customizing their avatars and exploring the space that was built just for them. Vinita Rafa Azzahra, a student from Indonesia, found it unique and told us that she enjoyed exploring the map. “I really love it,” she says. “It was my first time using it and it was such a fun experience.”
Meeting the DETERMINANT Team
In between school projects, internships, and exams, the real world can sometimes feel like an abstract concept, but meeting Daisy Guo and Stephanie Chan from DETERMINANT gave the students a better sense of what awaits them when they graduate. The knowledge the two women shared wasn’t just limited to the case study itself. They also spoke at length about their experiences and respective career trajectories, inspiring the students to ask a volley of questions, which both DETERMINANT representatives gamely answered.
Tacking the case study
The Real World Challenge aims to simulate a real-life work scenario by giving students an authentic business problem to solve. In the case study presented by DETERMINANT, it was a matter of choosing between a licensing deal vs. a partnership deal. S.M. Azmain Hossain, a student from Bangladesh, thought the case study was dynamic in a lot of ways and that the challenge unlocked his mind. For Tricia Ang, a student from Singapore, this was her opportunity to test the theories she was taught in school. “It was an eye-opening experience,” she says. “It challenged me to apply my learnt knowledge in school to real cases.”
Playing the mini challenge
To spice things up, we held a trivia game for the contestants and instructed them to look for a hidden message from the brand all throughout the space. The students were competitive—a nice corner office was at stake after all—but they also attested that they learned a lot about the brand in the process. Mohamed Aejas, a student from India, cited it as one of his favorite moments. Tricia echoed his sentiment, saying that it was “very engaging and made the whole case competition more fun.”
Attending Office Hour
Office Hour was the teams’ chance to consult Daisy and Stephanie about the case study as well as present what they have worked on so far. “I really loved Office Hour and it provided a different perspective from my team’s,” says Tricia. Vinita also found this scheduled session impactful. “It was really helpful and we got a better understanding of the case study.” Office Hour was also Daisy and Stephanie’s opportunity to get to know the students a little better. In fact, they were so pleased with what they saw that they decided that they would offer one of the students an internship opportunity with the company.
Presenting to the judges
All teams were given 10 minutes to present their work to Daisy and Stephanie. Shane Lim, a student from Singapore, said that this was actually one of his favorite moments. For Angela Seah, another student from Singapore, getting through the presentation felt great. “For the past one week or so, we have been working on it and researching the whole topic,” she says. Their hard work certainly showed as all the teams delivered their proposals with confidence, and even though there could only be one winner in the end, the students felt like they learned a lot of real-world skills from the experience. The next time they find themselves facing a real-world work problem, we have no doubt that they’ll be ready for it.