Global Student Competition – Requirements of bids and student projects

The Business Events Industry Student Challenge engages competing teams on their knowledge and understanding of the Industry to create and propose a successful event. The goal of this challenge is to have a proposal for a meeting incentive trip,  exhibition,  tradeshow, consumer show,  convention, conference, congress or product launch (see glossary).

The winning team will be invited to present at Convening Leaders to interact with industry thought leaders attending PCMA’s most important platform.

Eligibility Proposal

  1. To be eligible for the PCMA Student Challenge, you must:
    Be an enrolled, diploma or degree seeking undergraduate or master’s student in the fields of meeting and /or events management, business/commerce management, hospitality or tourism related program.
  1. Teams can be integrated with participants of different class/level.
  1. Each team must be composed of a minimum of 4 / maximum 5 participants.
  1. Participants can only be on one team. Students cannot register for more than one team.
  1. The team is to submit a proposal (a complete business plan) considering the concept, the relevance, the commercial viability, an innovative way of organizing an event and all other business considerations.
  1. Upon submission of the proposal, the college/university enrolling the team’s members must hold a student chapter within PCMA membership. Visit our Student Chapter page for more information.

Proposals from participating teams will focus on one of the identified industry clusters and are to:

Conceptualize, business-test and organize an event, focusing on the selected industry cluster.

The proposed event should be one that is distinct from the existing ones organized for the selected industry cluster (i.e. it should not replicate anything that exists, past or present).

The proposed concept must also include an innovative feature or way of organizing the event (e.g. delegate experience, venue selection, meeting design).

Proposals must be submitted in PDF format, a maximum of 40 pages in length (not counting any references or appendices), and must consider the following outline.

Graphics/tables/figures and creativity are encouraged to be included.

Outline: Each proposal must expand upon the following topics. Inclusion of these sections is strongly encouraged to improve your team’s score within judging criteria. Suggested page length for each section is noted:

►  Executive Summary (1 Page)

►  Introduction: Brief description of the project, the relevance and other considerations. (2 Pages)

►  Landscape Analysis: Research and analysis reports and data. Past and current events held for the selected industry cluster. The opportunities in the selected industry cluster. (Up to 5 Pages, but can also be put into appendices)

►  Event Concept: Brief description or outline of the event. Proposed revenue streams. (3 Pages)

►  Detailed Program*: Dates of event & Activities description and rationale for selection of activities. (4 Pages)

► Event Project Plan: Review of venue/destination. The rationale for selection. Set-up of space. Logistics. Innovation piece. Live event plan. (10 Pages)

►  Marketing Plan: Target audience. Selected marketing & communication channels. Usage of selected channels. (3 Pages)

►  Staffing Plan: Pre/during/post event management. Volunteer. Outsourcing. Strategic partners. (2 Pages)

►  Financial Plan: Estimated budget including fixed and variable costs. Profit & Loss Statement. Revenue & estimated cost analysis. (2 Pages) 

►  References/Appendices: List of references and or appendices (10 Pages)

*Teams are strongly encouraged to propose new and innovative ideas for these components. Proposed ideas need not be new for the industry, however, have to be an improvised version of the existing.


Registration & Submission of Proposal

 To register teams must complete the registration form, linked on the student competition homepage.
 All teams must receive a registration of confirmation, before submission of the proposal.
 Submissions are to be received no later than November 6th, 2023
 Late submissions will be excluded from the challenge.
 Proposals must be submitted in PDF format and PPT format for finalist presentations.
 No revision of any kind will be entertained after the submission deadline, therefore teams are strongly advised to submit their final version after thorough internal checks.
 Any supporting documents in Excel or Word formats have to be named according to content and organized in folders.
 Teams are to submit their final set of the proposal with supporting documents by the respective institution and team name – (i.e. <name of school>_<team name>)

Presentation of Proposal

After proposals are scored, the top 5 teams will be invited to present their final proposal to the panel of judges via a live webinar* with a 5 minute Pitch Presentation and 5-10 minute Q&A session.

 The pitch presentation and Q&A session should show that each group member has a strong understanding of the proposed event and has contributed to the final project.

 Judging criteria:
1. Idea and Concept Formulation
2. Relevance to the Industry
3. Strategic and Operational Planning
4. Marketing Strategies
5. Innovation
6. Commercial Viability
7. Presentation Skills and Team Building

*Participants may be required to take part in one or more rehearsal sessions prior to the live webinar.

The winning team will be announced upon completion of all presentations.

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