The SBSC was created to serve you.

We know running and growing a small business is never an easy task, and it’s made increasingly harder by unexpected external forces such as a pandemic and economic recession.

We also know small businesses are the backbone of the American economy and we want to see you succeed.

What can the SBSC do for you?

The SBSC offers you access to strategic and innovative business consulting for free.

  • Harness the support of a team of 3 MBA students working on your behalf to develop an innovative approach for how you may achieve business sustainability and success over the next 12 months and beyond.
  • Help identify the opportunities and trouble spots you’ve been too busy IN your business day to day to see
  • Add a detailed level of research and planning to make more informed decisions for your future
  • Give you a chance to network with other small business owners and find new ideas and opportunities to support and collaborate with each other
  • Earn some additional PR and media attention by participating in the event and having your business case be shared on our website and social media platforms

Will the SBSC solve all your business problems?

No, we don’t expect that in a 48 hour hackathon event. (Nor should you.)

But, we have seen that the support, clarity and focus that comes from working with your MBA team makes moving forward with confidence substantially easier.


Who qualifies for the SBSC?

The Challenge is for small to medium sized businesses based in the USA with 3-30 employees.

No equity funding or plans for equity funding (a.k.a. no startups.)


How are we selecting the small businesses from the hundreds of applicants?

Our criteria include:

  • Quality of application: how valuable you expect the program be to your small business
  • Owned/operated by an alum of a participating MBA program (bonus!)
  • Located near a participating business school campus (preferred but not required)
  • Able to commit time and resources to the program (a must!)

How much time will you need to commit?

We expect you to:

  • Commit a minimum of 2 hours to the program: 1 hour for an initial meeting with your team on the first day, then 1 hour additional during the 48 hour event for responding to follow-up and questions from your team as the work on your business case proposal
  • You're invited to attend any of the events, workshops, and network but not required
  • We recommend someone from your business attends the kickoff meeting on Thursday and finals on Saturday afternoon/evening if at all possible

Past Cohorts


Carnegie Mellon University - Tepper School of Business

Dartmouth College - Tuck School of Business

Duke University - Fuqua School of Business

Georgetown University - McDonough School of Business

NYU - Stern School of Business

UC Berkeley - Haas School of Business

UCLA - Anderson School of Management

University at Albany, SUNY- School of Business

University of Texas at Austin - McCombs School of Business

University of Virginia - Darden School of Business

University of Washington - Bothell School of Business

University of Washington - Foster School of Business

Vanderbilt University - Owen Graduate School of Management

Washington University in St.Louis - Olin School of Business

Yale - School of Management


Arizona State University - W.P. Carey School of Business

Claremont Graduate University - Drucker School of Management

Emory University - Goizueta Business School

Harvard Business School

MIT Sloan School of Management

Northwestern University - Kellogg School of Management

Stanford University  - Graduate School of Business

Strayer University - Jack Welch Management Institute

University of Chicago - Booth School of Business

University of Cincinnati - Linder College of Business

University of Illinois - Gies College of Business

USC - Marshall School of Business

Thank you to our Gold Sponsor for supporting the SBSC-I and SBSC-II

RingCentral logo