EDGE's 2017-2018 Co-Chairs are none other than Jonathan Bennett and Spencer O'Donnell. They use their vision for the competition to guide all other team members and help them wherever possible. They are excellent leaders who are certain to guide their team to create EDGE's next-level competition.
Hello! My name is Jon and I am eager to work alongside Spencer as the Co-Chair for the 2017-18 EDGE Business Competition. As a fourth year Strategic Management & Organization Student, I am looking forward to planning this competition by encouraging my team to work together with a high level of transparency and accountability.
Ongoing mentorship and support is incredibly important to me both personally and professionally. My long-term involvement with the Alberta Lacrosse Referees Association has brought me to multiple national championships and one World Championship, and being part of the Leadership Certificate Program at the Alberta School of Business has empowered me to excel. When I am not hanging out at the University eating lunch, drinking coffee, or trying to study, you can find me happily keeping busy working one of my jobs, volunteering with minor sports, watching The Office, or going out for dinner to socialize with friends.
My two recent summer exchanges to Vienna and Hong Kong ignited my passion to experience culture, and I now plan to complete my degree abroad next year. One of my most dreaded questions is my plans after school. For now, I am focused on gaining more international and volunteer experience to help drive me towards a fulfilling future.
My name is Spencer and I am excited to help lead EDGE’s team as Co-Chair. I am in my last year at the University of Alberta taking a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering. I enjoy solving problems and thinking of innovative ways for companies and communities to overcome the barriers that they face. My main interests include renewable energy, sustainable development, techno-economics, engineering design, and entrepreneurship. I hope to graduate and then begin working to attain my Professional Engineer designation.
This past summer I had the privilege of working with a startup company called Terrapin Geothermics. A renewable energy company, Terrapin is developing a proprietary heat-to-power system to generate clean, renewable, baseload power. My main involvement was in the design development of Terrapin’s system. I also had exposure to the business development side of Terrapin’s operations. I attended shareholder, stakeholder, and strategic partner meetings throughout my time there. The contact with these parts of the business gave me valuable insight into the balance between the business and engineering obligations of the company. When I am not working or at school I enjoy playing Team Handball, Soccer, Hockey, and Volleyball. I also enjoy travelling and like to learn about the politics and history of different countries. My favorite tv show is House of Cards and my favorite movie is Inception.
A business leader I admire is Elon Musk. His ability to turn ambitious engineering technologies into profitable and valuable businesses is fascinating. To me, he is the perfect mix of technical and commercial and the success of his companies show his leadership, intelligence, and hard work. I consider him a leader whose workstyle I would like to emulate in my career.