Psychology Graduate Students Participate in SIOP Case Competition

Students in Meredith’s Industrial-Organizational (I-O) Psychology master’s degree program were able to demonstrate their skills by participating in the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP) National Consulting Challenge Case Competition.

In the competition, students are put into four-person teams composed of students from other programs and tasked with responding to a request for proposals (RFP) from the hosting organization. UKG co-hosted in 2023 and this year’s competition was hosted by John Deere. For the past two years, more than 40 students from 25 different colleges participated each year. 

The challenge takes place online over three to four days. On the final day, students are evaluated by judges from the hosting organization, Minnesota State University, and other organizations.

Graduate programs can nominate two students to participate, and Meredith has done so for both years of the competition. In 2023, students Trevor Pelky and Janika Koelblin were nominated to participate in the challenge. Koelblin’s team placed second, winning $1,000 and participating in a panel at SIOP’s 2023 conference to share their experiences with others. 

Koelblin recommends the competition to future students. “It was a great experience – stressful, but the benefits outweighed that by a lot,” she said. “You get in touch with great people from great schools and companies. The challenge happens right before SIOP, so you get the chance to meet most everyone in person soon after and network a bit more.”

Meredith Student’s Team Wins First Place

Leah Howard - IO Psych Student

This year, Caroline Murray and Leah Howard were nominated to compete. Howard was part of the first-place team, alongside students from Minnesota State University, George Mason University, and Auburn University. Their team was awarded $2,000 and will present on a panel at SIOP’s 2024 conference this year to talk about their experiences. 

Howard said the experience helped clarify her career plans.

“Participating in this challenge solidified my dedication to pursuing a career in consulting and improved my sense of competence and confidence,” said Howard. “It was a fantastic opportunity to learn about consulting as a real-world practice and also to learn more about my knowledge, skills, abilities, and challenges when it comes to working on an important project with a team of people you’ve never worked with before who bring their own skills, abilities, and challenges.”

Caroline Murray - IO Psych Student

Murray appreciated the opportunity to work as a team to address challenges and develop solutions for a real organization.

Through this experience, I came to appreciate the power of teamwork in problem-solving. Collaborating with my team taught me that by leveraging our collective strengths and diverse perspectives, we could generate more innovative solutions,” Murray said. “I also learned that effective teamwork, while rewarding, can be challenging. It requires active listening, respect for different viewpoints, and a commitment to achieving shared goals.”

Learn more about Meredith’s I-O Psychology program

Melyssa Allen

News Director
316 Johnson Hall
(919) 760-8087
Fax: (919) 760-8330
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