The Client Problem Solving Competition

(Hosted at the Association of Applied and Clinical Sociology Annual Conference)

Rules and Processes

The Client Problem Solving Competition (CPSC) is an annual student team competition held at the Association for Applied and Clinical Sociology (AACS) conference every year. The CPSC event provides students with a meaningful use of applied skills they learned in sociology, experience in teamwork and time management, and serves as a valuable networking opportunity for the next generation of practicing sociologists.

The CPSC coordinator solicits a problem from a local agency or organization that will be presented to participating student teams. A representative of the organization will answer students’ questions on the first day of the conference. Students attend sessions and ask sociologists and practitioners attending the conference and work together as a team on solving the problems using sociological insights.

Teams present their solutions to the AACS adjudicating panel, the organization representative and conference attendees in the audience on the last day of the conference. Each team has at least 20 minutes to present their solutions with some time for questions and answers.

The AACS panel chooses the team with the best solution based on a rubric developed for the competition to receive the CPSC 2017 award. The representative from the organization selects the team with the best solution from the organization’s perspective for the “Client’s Choice” award. A plaque naming the winning teams will be sent to the school winning the CPSC 2017 award and the “Client’s Choice” awards. Winning teams receive a small cash award. All team members participating in the CPSC will receive a certificate of participation signed by the 2017 AACS President.

Examples of prior client organizations and questions include:

Organization: Meals On Wheels (MOW), The Montgomery Area Council On Aging Montgomery, AL

Statement of the Problem: How can MACOA recruit and retain Meals on Wheels volunteers age 50 and younger?

Organization: Veterans Place of Washington Boulevard

945 Washington Boulevard, Pittsburgh, PA 15206

Statement of the Problem: How can they spread the message to veteran’s on what the Veteran’s Place offers?

Organization: ECDC African Community Center

Statement of the Problem: A need for affordable housing in Denver for the ECDC refugees.

You can access the Rules and Processes here