Posted on Tuesday 25th June 2013
Twenty two of our Business School undergraduates, including a further three from Computer Science, have just been put through their paces on the exclusive University of Birmingham Capgemini Community Challenge.
This is a unique five-day programme, now in its second year, where our students work as Capgemini consultants on a problem for a real charity client. The first day took place at the Business School, with the next three at both Capgemini and the Charity clients that the students were assigned to help. The final day saw the students report back their solutions and recommendations at the Capgemini Accelerated Solutions Environment in Telford, a unique and exciting facility that is usually only available to Capgemini clients at a considerable premium.
The Programme is championed by Capgemini Vice President Billie Major who said of our undergraduates: “You have a fantastic set of students, not only truly talented but they engaged with the process very well. I really hope a few of them want to join us at some point in their careers!”
One of the teams meet their client; The Midlands Air Ambulance
Rising to a variety of ‘Apprentice-style’ business challenges, the five teams provided real solutions to problems set by DEBRA, Telford Pulling Together, Midlands Air Ambulance, Shrewsbury Neonatal Unit and Telford Food Bank. The final presentations were quite staggering, and were attended by Telford MP David Wright, in addition to the charity clients and senior Capgemini and University of Birmingham personnel.
Jake Bennett, Coordinator of Telford Crisis Network and Telford Foodbank who was impressed with the solutions offered, said: “We asked the students to work out how the Telford Foodbank was going to promote healthy eating and they produced a food plan based on studies from the NHS and a fully outlined affordable cooking course.”
This is nothing like your average work experience; from the word ‘go’ we were presented with a real life problem and asked to go and solve it. It’s daunting but now we’ve come through the other end I really feel it has boosted my confidence. Georgina Craig, first year International Business student:
Putting what we’ve learnt in the class room into action in the Boardroom has been a real learning curve. Seeing the practical side of problem solving in a corporate environment has got me excited about my degree. Kate Phipps, first year Business Management student
View highlights of the 2012 Capgemini challenge below:
About the charities
DEBRA is the national charity working on behalf of people in the UK with the genetic skin blistering condition Epidermolysis Bullosa (EB).
Telford Pulling Together is a partnership of seven organisations based-in or working with the community to benefit the town’s voluntary sector.
Shrewsbury Neonatal Unit is the main provider of acute hospital care for sick and premature babies in Shropshire.
The Midlands Air Ambulance is the only charity responsible for funding and operating three air ambulances serving the communities of Gloucestershire, Herefordshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Worcestershire and the West Midlands.
Telford Crisis Network and Telford Foodbank are coming together to support their neighbours and generously donating food and items that can be called upon by individuals and families in crisis and in desperate need.