Collaboration and innovation were the driving forces behind first-year MBAs in their first experiences as Broad College of Business students.

A group photo of MBA students with Wendy's employees.

Co-champions Alex Rivera, Shardul Pathak,
Anshul Rajgarhia,
Maria Haugen, pose with Associate Dean Glenn Omura and
Wendy’s employees Valerie Schroder and Melissa Cash.

Each semester, Broad’s Full-Time MBA students participate in Extreme Green: a three-day, hands-on, experiential learning workshop done alongside the college’s leading corporate partners. Extreme Green I, “Building Creative Confidence,” is catered to first-year MBAs and this year featured Wendy’s and Procter & Gamble (P&G).

“Extreme Green was a great first thing to do as a Broad MBA because it jump-started our executive thinking mindset,” said Maria Haugen. “By interacting with actual companies, we were able to creatively strategize solutions to real issues that companies deal with every day,” she said.

As part of Extreme Green I, students dive head first into creative problem-solving in a live case competition. On day one of the case competition, students learned some of the basics to get the workshop started, including an understanding of what consumers do, why they do what they do, and how they feel about their decisions.

MBA students pose with P&G's Cheryl McKettrick.

Winnie Jeng, Jeff Sroka, and Jason Siegfried pose with P&G’s Cheryl McKettrick

Days two and three pushed students outside of the box to problem-solve for Wendy’s and P&G, all while tapping into a competitive mindset. The second day of competition challenged students to develop 10 new premier menu items for Wendy’s; day three called for teams to devise a solution for P&G to compensate for the loss of impulse sales when supermarkets offer grocery purchasing via internet and pick up/delivery in person.

New this semester was something unheard of in Extreme Green history: co-champions on day two of the competition swept the third and final day of the competition as well.

“Extreme Green validates that any business student can develop and improve their capacities for creative and innovative thinking, regardless of their previous professional backgrounds or experiences,” said Wayne Hutchinson, director of MBA Program & Academic Services. “To see our students embrace this kind of thinking and explore ways to incorporate it across their academic and professional lives has been a special experience,” he said.