Campus Life  

OC professors win back-to-back North American Case Conference award

Three Okanagan School of Business professors pose for a photo after winning the bronze medal at the North American Case Conference

Business Professors Dr. Kyleen Myrah, Kerry Rempel and Stacey Fenwick continue to put Okanagan College on the map when it comes to case research and writing.

Myrah, Rempel and Fenwick took home the bronze from the recent North American Case Conference, hosted by the North American Case Research Association (NACRA) virtually Oct. 14 to 16.

NACRA is an organization made up of case writers, researchers and teachers from all over the world. It holds an annual North American conference and publishes a top-level peer-reviewed journal of educational teaching cases that business instructors can use in their classes. For the 2021 conference, 200 members from over 20 countries participated, and 120 cases were submitted for the event.

This year, Myrah, Rempel and Fenwick’s case explored EnactusOC, a student-run organization at Okanagan College that uses entrepreneurial activities to make a positive impact in the community. The case explores motivational theories and group dynamics during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Our case was situated around how EnactusOC transitioned through a pandemic. In particular, how a leader continues to motivate and move a team through these times, especially a team over which they have no authority or responsibility,” Rempel says.

This is Myrah and Rempel’s second podium finish at NACRA two years in a row, after winning gold in 2020 for exploring how the Kelowna community incorporated the voices of the city’s unhoused population into the plan to end homelessness and the ongoing challenges the pandemic poses on that strategy. 

Myrah explains that even though the Enactus OC case wasn’t as complex as the gold-winning case, their 2021 research highlighted the important issue of how the pandemic affected volunteer groups, such as Enactus.

“We talk a lot about faculty and students trying to manage education online but no one is talking about the extracurricular activities that disappeared,” she says. “Their experience was really relatable to students and professors who want to adopt this case.”

Fenwick describes it was special to receive the bronze medal award.  

“This was my first time winning a case with Kerry and Kyleen and they’re award-winning case writers so it was incredible,” she says. “They’re adept at storytelling and they have very robust teaching manuals with their cases, so it was a great learning experience for me.”

Rempel says winning another award was a great honour, especially coming from a smaller institution compared to their competitors.

“We’re competing against major powerhouse institutions where people are funded to do research,” she says. “To be recognized as one of the top in the world in case research and writing, it’s an amazing feeling.”

Fenwick says the win brings exposure and sheds a light on what OC’s School of Business is about and the talented people that work in the department.

“It shows that we have expertise. When students read a case and they recognize the names and see it’s been published and realize those people are from our institution, it gives them a sense of how credible we are overall,” she says.

More Campus Life articles