College students take first place at Hackathon
A group of Grove City College students took first place at the Mylan Competitive Intelligence Hackathon on March 1 at Mylan Labs Headquarters in Southpointe, Pa.
The College team, named Macro Encephalos, consisted of seniors James Kintzing and Liam Kurt; along with sophomores Ben Che, Karolina Lagerquist and Liz Wilson. The group took home $5,000 in prize money.
In the 10-hour-long marathon event, Grove City competed against teams from Carnegie Mellon University, the University of Pittsburgh, Duquesne University, Robert Morris University, Fairmont State University and more. All told, 17 presentations were made.
Bruce Cullen, vice president of innovation and architecture at Mylan, spoke highly of the Grove City College team, “I am thrilled that they [Grove City College] were able to demonstrate their abilities. They are leaders who understand and know how to work as a team.”
The team was presented with a problem to solve. How can Mylan, a global pharmaceutical company, get the right information to the right people in their organization at the right time? Several challenges were thrown out to the group as to what information is important to Mylan and the objective was: Help Mylan, recently named one of the world’s most innovative companies by Forbes, better meet society’s changing health care needs by designing a solution that provides its employees with the right information at the right time.
It was then up to each team to devise a competitive intelligence program. Some teams chose to focus on multiple aspects of the company to find available information. The Grove City College team chose to limit their approach to one aspect of the business unit that would affect innovation, drugs and the market, based on what Mylan had already accomplished in the last five years.
After hours of brainstorming, the team was given an hour to put together a five-minute presentation. Their approach was concise, short and on point just as they are taught. The team got many compliments on their presentation.
George Howley, assistant professor of entrepreneurship at the College, accompanied the team on the trip and said “Our students were unbelievable and true Grovers working 10 hours as a unique team. They performed, never crossed words and achieved success. I believe they were the only team to put their school logo on their presentation, a tribute to being part of a bigger team, a bigger heritage that is Grove City College.”