PTCMW Annual Graduate Student Consulting Challenge Competition

Welcome to the PTCMW Annual Graduate Student Consulting Challenge Competition webpage! The Consulting Challenge is a graduate student competition developed by PTCMW in 2014 to allow students to develop key professional skills, while expanding their professional networks and winning great prizes! Specific information for the annual competition is listed below. Thank you for visiting!

Register Now!

For specific questions not covered on this page, visit the "Contact" section below.

2017 Information


Thursday, September 14th

(Collaborate Friday - Sunday)

Monday, September 18

2017 Consulting Challenge Sponsor



Since 1975, PDRI, a CEB Company, has been a recognized, industry-leading provider of talent solutions. PDRI’s professional service offerings help commercial and government clients hire, train, certify, develop, manage, and motivate diverse workforces in high-performance organizations. PDRI is a wholly owned subsidiary of CEB, the leading member-based advisory company and the largest employer of I-O Psychologists around the globe. We are happy to support the I-O community, including PTCMW, and are always on the lookout for outstanding I-O psychologists – including recent graduates – to support our vibrant and growing business. Please visit our web-site for more information:

Why Should You Participate?

EXPERIENCE A REALISTIC JOB PREVIEW: PTCMW and the sponsor organization present a real challenge local organizations are currently facing in a realistic RFP format. Students present as if they were external consultants bidding on a consulting project. Solutions are judged by expert practitioners based on theory, technical merit, and innovation.

EXPAND PROFESSIONAL NETWORK: Students currently enrolled in local I-O and related programs are assigned to a group made up of students with differing expertise, knowledge, and program affiliations. After students get assigned into teams, everyone is invited to connect with PTCMW board members at a happy hour in DC.

DEVELOP CONSULTING SKILLS: Teams are responsible for building an effective team, developing products, and presenting results.

BUILD COMMUNICATION SKILLS: Each team presents to an independent panel of expert I-O judges and receive invaluable feedback.

WIN PRIZES: The winning team receives $1,250, and the runner-up team wins $750. In addition, every participating team receives free PTCMW student membership for the year, and the top three teams also win free admission to PTCMW’s annual Talent Connection & Networking Fall Event, where they are recognized in front of over 200 local I-O academics and practitioners.

How Does the Challenge Work?

1. The first 30 students to register are able to participate (PTCMW membership not required).

2. Students are then placed on one of 5 teams with students from other universities.

3. The sponsor organization then presents teams with an RFP that outlines a real organizational challenge.

4. Teams work together to develop a proposal and presentation.

5. Sponsor organization representatives and expert I-Os will judge presentations and rate proposals.

6. One team will win the challenge and be awarded with $1,250, prize structures vary for all other teams.

TEAM COMPOSITION: PTCMW leadership reviews applications in regards to previous work or research experience, university affiliation, and year in school in order to develop diverse and fair teams.

How To Register

ELIGIBILITY: Students must be in a Master’s or Doctoral program in Industrial-Organizational Psychology, Organizational Behavior, Management or related program. Students must commit to being in person for the event and to contribute equally and fairly to their team. We encourage students from outside of the greater Washington, DC Metro to participate also. PTCMW membership is not required to participate!


QUESTIONS? CONTACT: Nikki Blacksmith ( or Andrew Naber (

Congratulations to the 2016 Consulting Challenge Winners!

First Place Team:
From left to right: Tim Burgoyne (GMU), Elena Auer (ODU), Veronica Passarelli (GMU), Alyssa Gradus (UB), Katelyn Reynolds (ODU)

Second Place Team:
From left to right: Christian Dobbins (GMU), Stephen Tyler (GMU), Lauren Lanzo (GWU), Settera Burleson (ODU; not pictured)

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