Case Competitions

Advanced Advertising MKTG 4149

Professor Lynda Maddox teaches an Advanced Advertising class each spring semester for students that are interested in pursuing a career in advertising or wanting more advertising experience. This class offers the opportunity to study multiple case studies throughout the course of the class.

Battle of the Beltway

The Battle of the Beltway is a Case Study Competition hosted by Deloitte. Through the case competition, students gain valuable experience by analyzing and working through case studies. Students will be exposed to the consulting industry and Deloitte’s Federal practice. When asking students after the experience what they thought about the case competition over 80% of students who participated said they benefited “more than expected.”

What is the Battle of the Beltway?

Undergraduate sophomores and juniors have the opportunity to participate in a real world federal business case competition. Previous cases have addressed the United States Navy and the Federal Railroad Administration. Students will develop a solution and present it before a panel of judges. Nine teams will compete in the preliminary round at their university. The top teams will advance to the final round in Washington, DC and compete against other regional universities.

  • Info Session: 
  • Preliminary Round:
  • Final Rounds:

Who is eligible to participate?

The competition is open to sophomores and juniors of any major.

A best practice is to have at least one team member from the business school and one team member from outside the business school participate on each team.

One member from each team can be exchanged if the team moves on to the final round. This is to accommodate students that are not able to participate in the final round but would like to participate in the preliminary round.

Please note several positions in Deloitte Consulting’s Federal Government Practice, the sponsor of Battle of the Beltway, require U.S. citizenship. Additionally, employment for Deloitte Consulting’s Federal Analyst role requires the ability to obtain a security clearance. However, all students are encouraged to participate in the case competition.

How many students can participate?

Up to nine teams of four students (36 students total) from each university may participate in the preliminary round. It is up to the individual university to determine who will participate if more or less than 36 students indicate interest.

Two teams (eight students) from each of the participating universities (American, Georgetown, George Washington, Howard, Princeton, Richmond, Wake Forest, and William & Mary) will advance to the final round of the Battle of the Beltway.

How can students register to participate?

Contact Rachael Forker at rachaelforker@gwu.edu for more information about registering for the Battle of the Beltway.

Will Deloitte sponsor the travel expenses for students from universities outside of the Washington, D.C. metro area?

Deloitte will sponsor travel expenses for two teams from each of the participating universities outside of the D.C. metro area (Princeton, Richmond, Wake Forest, and William & Mary). The sponsored expenses will include train fare or mileage (airfare for Wake Forest), hotel accommodations, and local travel. More detailed information will be provided to the students participating in the final round.

When and where will the Battle of the Beltway be held?

Preliminary rounds will be held at the individual universities in September and October. Please contact Rachael Forker at rachaelforker@gwu.edu for more information.

The final rounds will be held in Washington, DC.

Who are the judges?

For the preliminary rounds at the individual universities, each judging panel will consist of at least one Deloitte manager, senior manager, or Partner/Principal/Director (P/P/D) and two judges designated by the university. Those designated by the university may be professors, administrative staff, alumni, or anyone else of the University POCs’ choosing.

For the final rounds in Washington, DC, all of the judges will be Deloitte managers, senior managers, or P/P/Ds. Judges for the final rounds will be coordinated by the Battle of the Beltway planning team.

What are the prizes?

Participants in the preliminary rounds will receive Deloitte giveaways. Participants in the final rounds will receive Deloitte giveaways and the final four teams will receive a final round prize to be determined by the Battle of the Beltway planning team.

Can students receive coaching around the cases?

We encourage students to receive guidance around best practices for approaching cases and for presentation skills before the competition. Also, teams may practice their presentation to gain presentation feedback-only from non-team members (e.g., their University’s faculty and staff).

However, the universities should not address specific details of the case or in any way influence the solutions delivered by the teams.

Are students allowed to ask questions about the case?

Students may ask questions, but they must go through the Deloitte Battle of the Beltway Planning Team (BattleofBeltway@deloitte.com), to ensure consistency in answers. The answers to any questions will be sent to all students participating in the university’s preliminary round or the final round. All questions will be answered in a prompt manner; any questions sent after 6pm will be answered the following morning. Questions sent after 6pm the day before the preliminary or final round will not be answered.

Questions sent that are related to the logistics of the competition will be redirected to the Deloitte POC (Elise Chen at elisechen@deloitte.com) or GW POC (David Ruda at ruda@gwu.edu.

What tools/resources are available to students to prep for the competition?

Deloitte is looking for high performing students who have developed well thought out solutions to the business problem and logically present their solutions to the judges. Understanding the dynamics of business cases will help prepare you for the competition. The resources below will provide you with more information about cases and logical structuring:

How much time will students have to work on the case?

Students will receive the case by email from Deloitte one week prior to their presentation date. This will hold true for both the preliminary and final rounds.

How and when should students submit their presentations for the preliminary round?

Contact David Ruda at ruda@gwu.edu to learn more about submitting your preliminary round presentation. Be sure to identify who will print copies of the preliminary round presentation for the judges.

What are Deloitte’s expectations from teams?

Deloitte expects professionalism from all students participating in the Battle of the Beltway. Case presentations should be well thought out and presented in a logical manner. Students should anticipate devoting several hours to solving the case and creating their presentation.

Professional attire is expected during the final rounds of the Battle of the Beltway. It is up to the individual university to decide attire for the preliminary rounds.

For additional questions about the Battle of the Beltway, please contact David Ruda at ruda@gwu.edu or the Battle of the Beltway Planning Team (BattleofBeltway@deloitte.com).

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