Indiana ranks second in the nation in automotive-related Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and has more than 500 automotive companies doing business in Indiana. With more than 100,000 Hoosier workers in the automotive manufacturing industry, 459 percent above the national average, Indiana has a vested interest in continuing to develop the skilled talent for industry growth.
This week, the Indiana Automotive Council brought together 56 Indiana students for the first-ever statewide Indiana Automotive Case Competition. The team from IPFW won the event and was awarded a $5,000 cash prize.
Unlike case competitions where students work in teams with the sole purpose of solving a business case, the Indiana Automotive Case Competition was a 3-day event that coupled the case competition with a career fair and on-one-on meetings with automotive CEOs and other high-level executives.
“This week’s event focused on bringing together Indiana automotive company executives and students in a setting where students learn about the opportunities for careers in the automotive industry and industry leaders get to meet rising automotive industry talent,” said Matt Conrad, executive director of the Indiana Automotive Council. “While solving a business case provides students opportunities to apply classroom principles to real-world business challenges, the added experience of building relationships with industry leaders makes this case competition unique.”
During the case competition, students were asked to consider how to select a new site for an automotive assembly plant in Indiana, taking into consideration land cost, workforce availability and location. While students were given a day and a half to work on the case, they spent as many hours networking with nearly 20 automotive executives at an opening dinner and participated in a career fair to learn about career pathways and opportunities.
More than 12 Indiana automotive companies funded the immersive event, and hosted 14 universities and colleges. The team from Ball State University placed second and won a $2,000 cash prize and the team from University of Southern Indiana placed third and won a $1,000 cash prize.
IUPUI (2 teams)
Ivy Tech Indianapolis (2 teams)
Ivy Tech Kokomo
Purdue Polytechnic Anderson
Purdue Polytechnic Columbus (2 teams)
Purdue Polytechnic Kokomo (2 teams)
Purdue Polytechnic South Bend
University of Southern Indiana
Honda Manufacturing of Indiana
Subaru of Indiana Automotive