To launch VirBELA, a business simulation competition will be held. MBA student participants will be assigned to teams of four. Each team will have members that are globally distributed, representing the benefits and challenges of working on multi-cultural/multi-national teams. The teams will run a mock car company and compete against each other over the month of October, 2013. Teams and individuals will be awarded for demonstration of business acumen and effective team performance. Over $50,000 USD will be given away in scholarships and prizes.
Benefits of Participating
Gain experience working with an internationally-dispersed team
Opportunity to apply MBA course knowledge in a low risk applied setting
Personal coaching regarding team performance and business acumen
Opportunity to win scholarships and prizes
To be eligible for the VirBELA challenge you must meet the following:
Be enrolled as an MBA student and at least half way through your degree program
Must speak English
Must be willing to work on an international team which you will be assigned to
Must be available for ALL scheduled events
Must have the necessary technology
Must complete the application process in its entirety
Schedule of Events
There will be a mix of scheduled events that all participants will be expected to be present (virtually) and other times when teams will meet at their own discretion to submit quarterly inputs (1-5 hours).
Session 1: October 10th 13:00UTC - 16:00UTC
Session 2: October 17th 13:00UTC - 16:00UTC
Session 3: October 24th 13:00UTC - 16:00UTC
Session 4: October 31st 13:00UTC - 16:00UTC
*Note: Dates and times for all sessions are subject to minor changes.
Expectations of Participants
Complete the full application.
Participate in a pre-competition orientation. The orientation will be scheduled on an individual basis with a competition organizer. Each participant will meet with an organizer in the 3D environment to make sure the participant has the appropriate technology/access to enter and navigate in the virtual environment.
Read all preparation materials. The competition organizers will provide detailed instructions to the business simulation competition. Strong understanding and familiarity with the instructions will facilitate participation in the business simulation and give your team a higher chance of victory.
All participants must be present at all times of the competition (this includes four 3-hour sessions over the course of four weeks). Those who are not present for all competition meetings will not be eligible for competition prizes.
Outside of scheduled competition events, teams may meet on their own to strategize (either in the virtual environment or via other means).
How to Participate
Complete the online application.
Applications will be accepted through September 15th, 2013. However, we will be doing rolling admissions so slots may fill before then. It is recommended to complete the application process as soon as possible.
After the application is received, he/she will be sent a battery of interest, ability, personality assessments. The assessments are part of the leadership development experience and all who complete the assessments will be given individual feedback on their assessments, regardless if they are accepted to the competition or not.
Two to four students from each participating university who complete the assessment process will be selected for the competition.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: My MBA program is only one year long. I am half way through the program. Am I eligible for the competition?
Q: Does my university have to provide at least four students or is less okay?
A: Less is perfectly fine.
Q: What are the expectations of a university that has students participating in the competition?
A: We simply ask that the university promotes the competition to their students. Additional appreciated support would be to help test the VirBELA system from your location prior to the competition to assure best functionality and user experience for your students.
Q: What technology is necessary to access VirBELA?
A: The simple answer is a Mac or a PC and an internet connection. As with any online 3D game or virtual world, the user experience is improved with a strong internet connection, a larger monitor, and a computer with a good graphic card.
Q: The VirBELA website mentions that to be eligible for the competition, one must "complete the full application". What does this entail?
A: First students need to express their interest by completing the five minute application form on the website. The VirBELA team will then review your application to assure you meet the basic requirements for eligibility. Assuming you meet the basic requirements, you will be emailed links to complete online career assessments. The results of the assessments will not be used as selection criteria (rather a random sample will be drawn from each university for selection). All assessment data will be kept confidential. Students (regardless of being selected or not) will be provided with the results of their assessment and an organizational psychologist will help them interpret the results.
Q: The website says, if selected, I will be randomly assigned to a team. Will there be an opportunity to meet my teammates before the start of the competition?
A: Yes. In the weeks prior to the competition a VirBELA facilitator will set up a meeting with you and your teammates to meet via VirBELA.