Haylee Seiter, B.Comm, Marketing

Haylee Seiter

Communications Advisor, Northern Health

JDCW Involvement: 2014 Not-for-Profit, 2016 Marketing (1st Place), 2017 Coach, 2018 Godparent

To anyone who is even remotely considering trying out for the UNBC JDC West team, know this: joining the team is the best decision you’ll ever make in your undergraduate career. When I made the team in my 3rd year of university I had just switched into business. I had barely completed my introductory classes when I heard about JDCW. Being naturally competitive and having a knack for public speaking, I tried out and made the NFP team. I was thrilled. That first year on the team taught me a ton about business in general, the NFP world, the competition and what it truly takes to be in the top of the pack when competing against all of the other universities. My team didn’t place very well but the friends I made and the amazing experience made me sure that I wanted to do it again.

What happened over the next few months that year was nothing extraordinary: my team and I studied, practiced, strategized, and worked our asses off to be as prepared as we could possibly be. Then at the competition, the seemingly impossible happened:

we placed first. I’ll never forget the anticipation and excitement as we waited for third place, second place, then finally, first place to be called. The roar of screams and cheers when “The University of Northern….” was called – it was truly surreal. It’s a feeling that I wish every JDCW competitor could experience. In my eyes, the biggest pieces to our success were: tapping into our local network of brilliant business knowledge (we were set up with an awesome panel of committed coaches that I can’t thank enough), putting in the time to practice and fill our knowledge gaps (what kind of time and effort do you think a winning team would put in?), and good old work ethic (at the competition and in life for that matter, no one is going to hand you anything. You have to want it and work for it!). That spring I went on to graduate with a bachelor of commerce in marketing and eventually land my current role as a Communications Advisor at Northern Health, one of the biggest employers in Northern BC. At the same time, I stayed involved during my first year out of university by coaching the international business team and in the fall, accepting the role of godmother for the 2018 team.

Without a doubt, being a part of the UNBC JDCW team changed my life. During my years on the team, I grew exponentially as a person, student, and a professional. I was able to apply the skills and knowledge I learned in my business classes (this is huge for anyone who wants to be successful post-grad), improve my public speaking, network in the community (I met some of my greatest mentors and valuable contacts through JDCW), and meet some of my very best friends. The road to the competition is a crazy and hard one that will test you in every way, but if it were easy everyone would do it and trust me, once you get there, you’ll be so glad you did.

Date: July 18, 2017