“The project is made possible by a $1.7 million Ideas to Innovation Challenge grant from the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC).
“This visionary project could drastically, and positively, alter the MBA experience in terms of how students gain information, how they interact with each other and how they develop skills,” said Rady School Dean Robert Sullivan.
Alex Howland, Project Manager of VirBELA, explained that the project’s inaugural program will be a cross-university MBA business simulation competition. This will be the first business competition to take place in the virtual world and unlike many traditional competitions, the teams will be comprised of MBA students from multiple universities around the globe.
“The goal of this competition will be to develop global competencies by giving students experience working across time zones and with different cultures,” Howland said.
The business simulation is “green” focused and teams will work together to design their product, figure out where to invest and how to incorporate green technology. Because the competition is taking place in the virtual world, researchers will have the opportunity to observe how the teams interact. “We will research how people collaborate in the business competition and facilitate discussions with participants about those collaborations providing direct feedback to students about their teamwork skills,” Howland said.”
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