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IDEAcorps MBA Consulting Challenge, presented by Dr. Bobby and Lori Kent Savoie

Ideacorps logo and sponsor header

The IDEAcorps MBA Consulting Challenge, presented by Dr. Bobby and Lori Kent Savoie, is an immersive event that gives MBA students the opportunity to apply their knowledge and skills helping small and/or early stage businesses averaging $250k in revenue develop a robust SCALE-UP strategy. Up to 12 teams from across the country will be paired with companies representing a diverse population of founders working in industries ranging from tech to retail.

Working remotely in early 2024, your team will meet with your assigned company to understand their current business, explore ways to scale it and create a unique SCALE-UP plan. During this time you will be given asynchronous instruction in best-in-class consulting techniques, understanding minority business challenges and scaling best-practices. In March, you will travel to New Orleans to enjoy a tour of some of the city's innovation centers, engage with innovative employers at New Orleans Entrepreneur Week, and culminate in a pitch competition to win: GRAND PRIZE of $5,000. Two runners up will be awarded $1,500. Team leaders - apply now to reserve your spot! 

Learn more about team commitments, founder qualifications, and the program agenda in the drop-down menu at the bottom of this page.


Program Dates:

  • December 1, 2023: Application Deadline - APPLY NOW
  • January 26 - February 23, 2024: Remote Consulting
  • March 6-10, 2024: New Orleans Innovation Experience and Pitch Competition


  • Total number of teams: 12
  • Team composition: No more than 5, no less than 4 members per team
  • Fee per team: $2,000 - APPLY NOW

Why IDEAcorps?

  • Work with a real company, not a hypothetical one
  • Fully engage in an immersive experiential learning opportunity
  • Learn consulting skills that can be used in scale-up development, corporate innovation initiatives, and consulting projects
  • Tour New Orleans' Innovation Centers, including the NASA Michoud Assembly Facility, the Port of New Orleans, the BioInnovation Center, and more
  • Network with employers from New Orleans and the Gulf South
  • Connect with the New Orleans entrepreneurial ecosystem
  • Enjoy New Orleans' music, food, and weather!


MBA team pitching on stage in Nunemaker Hall at IDEAcorps 2023


Sam McCabe,
Program Director
Center for Entrepreneurship and Community Development

Bara Watts,
Executive Director
Center for Entrepreneurship and Community Development

Right to Left: IDEAcorps 2023 Winning MBA Team; Teams visit NASA's Michoud Assembly Facility; Teams pitching at IDEAcorps finals in January 2023


    APPLY BY NOVEMBER 17, 2023. IDEAcorps team leaders are responsible for recruiting their IDEAcorps team (up to 5 members). The ideal team draws together members from diverse backgrounds and skill sets for the greatest competitive advantage. A faculty advisor is recommended for each team. Teams will be asked to provide a consulting profile with a general description of their ideal type of founding entrepreneur and/or company with which they would prefer to work.

    Thursday, January 25, 2024: Virtual Kickoff + Introductions

    • Virtual meet 'n' greet with MBA teams and company partners
    • Expectations and program breakdown

    Friday, January 26 - Friday, February 23, 2024: Remote Consulting

    • Virtual consulting with real New Orleans companies to develop a scale-up strategy
    • Asynchronous instruction on best-in-class consulting, minority business development and scale-up strategies.

    Wednesday, March 6 - Sunday, March 10: New Orleans Innovation Experience + Pitch Competition

    • New Orleans Innovation Center tour,: NASA, the BioInnovation Center, The Port of New Orleans, and more
    • Employer networking with 100+ companies
    • Pitch competition


    *times and schedule are subject to change


    • Full-time Founder
    • Minimum $250,000 gross annual revenue or equivalent. "Equivalent" can include "a growing freemium or traction customer base" with potential for conversion to a minimum of $250,000 gross annual revenue or capital raised.
    • Desire to scale to, at minimum, 50% of current gross annual revenue or equivalent within an 18-month period starting March 2024.


    • Approximately 1 hour per week from January 25 - February 26 (5 hours)
    • Share your current business details, explore ways to scale your business, and create a unique scale-up plan.
    • Commit to attend and participate in the Final Pitch Competition on Sunday, March 10 @ Loyola University.

    Questions? Contact Sam McCabe, Program Director.