For the first intramural USC Global Health Case Competition in 2012, 15 teams of undergraduate and graduate students were tasked with developing strategic plans for an imaginary $50 million donation from the International Medical Corps to Haiti.

In the final round, a “twist” in the case was announced—an imaginary Category 4 hurricane had struck Haiti earlier in the day. The teams were given 45 minutes to adjust their presentations to accommodate the anticipated destruction and ensuing health concerns.

Among the second round of judges were Haitian microfinance expert Claude Alexandre, Mexican Secretary for Prevention and Health Mauricio Hernández-Ávila, Sofia Charvel, IMC Vice President of Program Policy and Planning Stephen Tomlin, IMC Senior Communications Officer Jaya Vadlamudi, Dean of Medical Education Henri Ford and USC Institute for Global Health Director Jonathan Samet.

By an almost-unanimous vote, a team of six undergraduates won. Hao-Hua Wu, Rebecca Gao, Peter Eskander, Divya Bhamidipati, Sarah Bridge and Jasmine Thum represented diverse backgrounds of study, including biological sciences, East Asian studies, global health, theater, psychology, Spanish and biomedical engineering.

They competed at the Emory University International Global Health Case Competition in Atlanta, GA, and received an honorable mention, as well as positive reception from Jeffrey Koplan, Emory Global Health Institute director and former director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

“They were superb! Personable, organized, thoughtful and convincing…They wowed the judges…I am now a big fan of USC and greatly appreciate you sending a team for the Emory case competition.

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