Duke teams excel in 2019 energy case competitions

Few experiences require MBA students to think on their feet like business school case competitions.  Though formats vary, these competitions usually require a combination of quantitative analysis and strategic analysis—often under a tight time deadline—and typically culminate with a formal in-person presentation in front of judges, other MBAs, and industry experts.

Duke University teams had another banner year in energy-related case competitions during the Spring 2019 semester, taking 1st and 2nd place in two prestigious competitions.

1st Place Win – Columbia University Energy Symposium Case Competition

Team:  Veronica Cortes (MEM/MBA’20), Emily Davenport (MEM/MBA’20), Dexter Liu (MEM/MBA’19), Mike Penansky (MBA/MPP’20), and Alex Szerszen (MBA’19)

Finals: February 7, 2019

Prize: 1st place, $2,500

Topic: The team developed a plan to meet the generation needs of an aerospace testing facility that improved their reliability and lowered their energy bill.


2nd Place Win – Kellogg School of Management Energy Case Competition

Team: Veronica Cortes (MEM/MBA’20), Emily Davenport (MEM/MBA’20), Dexter Liu (MEM/MBA’19), and Alex Szerszen (MBA’19)

Finals: April 6, 2019

Prize: 2nd place, $2,000

Topic: The team was asked to provide a bid price for an island-nation’s utility company and develop a 20-year commissioning plan to ensure resiliency, meet new renewable portfolio standards, and transform the island’s economy.

Curricular and extracurricular experiences at Duke that combine MBA fundamentals with deep expertise in the energy sector helped the winning teams do well in these competitions against their peers.