SeAMK students developed the operations and game events of Karhubasket and IKH Areena with the help of virtual enterprise activity
Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences’ (SeAMK) first-year business students participate in the Virtual Enterprise Activity for either a year or six months. During the activity, the students establish virtual companies, although the goods and real money do not change hands. The goal is to get an overall picture of the company’s operations through doing and to put the basic studies into practice.
To support virtual companies in the International Business degree programme, so-called sponsor companies are sought, through which the operations of the virtual companies can be mirrored in reality. Sponsor companies can, if they wish, order small assignments from their own virtual companies.
Business plans for different areas of the sponsor company’s operations
The students of SeAMK’s International Business degree programme founded their own virtual enterprises last fall. They have had IKH Areena and the Karhubasket basketball team from Kauhajoki as their sponsor company.
The students got to know the operations of the sponsor company last fall, for example by visiting the IKH Areena. After this, the students prepared business plans for different areas of company’s operations, such as the restaurant and game events.
This spring, the students also got a separate assignment from Karhubasket, the goal of which was to develop pre-game events. This week, the students finally got to present their marketing campaigns and event ideas to the sponsor company.
“Impressive, idea-rich and ready-made solutions”
IKH Areena’s event and marketing coordinator Jemina Ala-Harja was very satisfied with what she heard and saw. According to her, the ideas presented by the five student groups about the pre-game events and the related marketing campaigns were mature and advanced.
– The students were clearly familiar with us and our activities because we got so many great ideas that we can implement, Ala-Harja rejoices.
Ala-Harja met both SeAMK teachers and students via Teams meetings during the spring.
Ala-Harja says that she is very pleased with the final solutions, which take into account Karhubasket’s own brand.
– The entire process and cooperation left a good feeling. We definitely could do this again, she says.
The students’ solutions were also evaluated by Nikolaj Ambrusevič, a teacher on exchange from SeAMK’s cooperation university Vilnius Kolegija/University of Applied Sciences (VIKO).
– I was really impressed about students’ plans. In a short time, they were able to come up with so many brilliant and creative ideas that can be implemented right away, Ambrusevič says.
He thinks it is wonderful how the students managed to combine creativity and practical implementation, considering the different target groups and possible limitations dictated by practice.
Valuable learning experiences
According to SeAMK’s students, participating in the virtual enterprise activity and special assignment gave them valuable learning experiences and taught them how to work efficiently as a team.
– We gained practical skills in preparing marketing and social media strategies for sports events, which required us to think creatively and strategically to attract audiences, says team leader Jennylyn Carlos of the winning group.
Carlos adds that throughout the special assignment, they learned about the importance of analytical thinking and collaboration in producing effective solutions.
– The most fun and exciting part was the special assignment, where we had the opportunity to put our skills and knowledge to the test. We enjoyed working together as a team and brainstorming creative ideas. It was a challenging task, but we worked hard and enjoyed the process of developing our concept. I would like to thank Jemina Ala-Harja for positive interactions with our group and motivating us to do our best, Carlos summarises.
As a prize, the winning group was invited as VIP guests to the Karhubasket’s game on their home court at IKH Areena.
Text: Annika Pollari, SeAMK
Photos: Annika Pollari, Kimmo Kulmala and Jennylyn Carlos, SeAMK