Competition Overview

This invitation-only competition is designed for full-time MBA students and will be held at NC State University on November 7th - 9th, 2019.

General Information

First Two Days

Merck will release the first challenge (the Foundational Challenge) information one month in advance to allow each challenge team the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the material and build their first presentation.

On the first day of the event, Thursday, November 7th, teams will be randomly divided into groups and present within their assigned group. Each presentation group will have a panel of judges consisting of senior executives from leading IT and health care firms. These judges will actively engage with student participants throughout the competition.

Building on the Foundational Challenge, teams will be given the second challenge (the Succession Challenge) following the presentations. All teams will present the second challenge on Friday, November 8th.

Based on overall performance in the Foundational and Succession Challenges, the top team from each presentation group will advance to the final challenge (the Grand Business Challenge). The remaining teams will compete in the Storyboard Challenge.

The Last Day

The top team from each group will compete in the Grand Business Challenge on Saturday, November 9th. The winning teams will receive a considerable amount of cash prizes.  The first place team from the Grand Business Challenge will also receive a coveted trophy to showcase their success at their school.

The remaining teams will compete in the Storyboard Challenge for additional prize money.


  • Business Casual during reception period (grand opening, group meals, Awards Reception)
  • Business Professional attire is required for all presenters
  • Business Casual attire is suggested for judges and guests