A list of frequently asked questions has been included below. For any other questions or concerns, please contact us using the Contact Us link above.
FAQs Before The Competition
Why should I participate in the McDonough Business Strategy Challenge (MBSC)?
As a participant in the McDonough Business Strategy Challenge (MBSC), you will have a truly unique opportunity to hone your business skills. The challenges facing non-profit organizations will test your ability to develop creative solutions to financial, strategic, and operational problems beyond those available to private industry.
You will also learn tremendously from other competitors. As you listen to your peers, you will find new approaches you did not perceive and solutions you did not identify. The MBSC also incorporates several social events where you can interact with students from other top universities.
Furthermore, you will be able to network with professionals in the field of management consulting. Several professionals from leading consulting firms will be judging the competition, and others from our sponsors will be attending throughout the weekend. Take this opportunity to learn more about the industry from the people who live it.
Join us and discover the thrill of problem-solving!
Who should I contact if I am interested in participating in the upcoming MBSC?
Participation in the MBSC is invite-only, if you are interested in participating please contact us at for more information! You should also contact faculty in your school’s Undergraduate Dean’s office or Student Programming representative to find out whether or not a team has been registered to compete in the competition. If a team has been registered, you should contact the faculty advisor designated to attend the competition and contact the advisor directly.
How do I form a team?
If your university has not registered to send a team to MBSC, do not worry because you can form a team by yourself and make your way to Washington, DC to compete. You can directly contact a faculty member who you think would be interested in serving as a faculty advisor and form a team through the advisor’s support.
An alternate method of recruiting a team is sending out an email to interested school clubs or classmates. You should also consider creating a wait-list if you find more than three other interested individuals.
How can I best prepare for the competition?
Click on “Past Competitions” above to find detailed profiles of past competitions. This includes: who the clients were, the case provided to students, and also what the finalist teams came up with in their presentations. This should serve as a good place to start preparing. However, please note, that every year the client and the client’s problem is unique. The materials will give you a basic idea of what goes into non-profit consulting but does not guarantee your success at the competition.
Who should I contact if I have a question before the competition?
Email with any questions you have about the competition.
Who should I contact if I have a question during the competition?
A full list of planning committee members along with their personal contact information and email addresses will be provided a few weeks before the competition in the participants packets that will be emailed. You can contact any of these individuals during the weekend of the competition
What happens if our team emails in the presentation late?
If the team emails the presentation even a minute past the specified deadline (to be determined and announced by the co-directors), the team will automatically be disqualified from participating.
What is the schedule like?
Every year the schedule varies depending on sponsor requirements and number of teams.
What are “deliverables”? Are they required? How long should they be?
Deliverables are anything that you want to include in your presentation and think is more effective in paper-form. This includes excel spreadsheets, brochures, etc. Deliverables are used to enhance and supplement your presentation, but are in no way required. If your team decides to include deliverables, they must be emailed with your PowerPoint and must be kept under 20 pages.
Can we ask our advisors for help during the competition?
No, please refrain from asking your advisors for any sort of help with the case. This will lead to disqualification of the team.
Are advisors allowed to watch first-round presentations?
Advisors are permitted to watch all five teams in their own bracket during the preliminary round of presentations as well as all final round presentations.