Creating scholarship, learning and career advancement opportunities.

Creating scholarship, learning and career advancement opportunities.

The Media Plan Case Competition represents the cornerstone of the Washington Media Scholars Foundation. It challenges students to think strategically and dive into the deep-end of marketing impressions, numbers and budgets.

The Media Scholars Media Plan Case Competition is a multi-round competition for students to compete on a national level. The finalists receive an all-expenses-paid, week-long professional development experience in Washington D.C. and compete for the National Excellence in Media Award and $18,500 in scholarships.

About the Competition

The Qualifying Round

The qualifying round includes a brief introduction to the basics of media planning and allows judges to determine those most able to submit a competitive media plan. During this round of the competition, students may work either individually or as a team of two.

Authors of the top 25-30 qualification round entries will be invited to participate in the 2023 Media Plan Case Competition. Of the top teams, six will be chosen to compete in Washington, D.C. for the National Excellence in Media Award and the Mia Guion Scholarship. This amounts to a total of $18,500 in scholarships to be awarded.

Case Competition

Teams of two create a strategic media plan based on a hypothetical public policy issue. Students work with actual, real-world data from leading national research and ratings firms to create a media plan that effectively reaches their target audience.

Some students may not have the knowledge or background necessary to create an in-depth strategic media plan. With that in mind, we have created a step-by-step guide to participation and a suggested reading list.

Now students, regardless of academic interest, have the opportunity to truly engage in this challenge; and potentially reach the Nation’s Capital for Media Scholars Week.


How to Apply


Register for the Qualifying Round

Please fill out the form linked below to let us know you intend to compete. Applicants can register as individuals, or as a team for the Qualifying Round. If you qualify to move on into the next phase of the competition, the Washington Media Scholars Foundation will match you with a partner to form a team.


Enter the Qualifying Round

For the first time in our 15-year history, students have the  opportunity to select a stance for their media plan. This is your chance to weigh in on online sports betting legislation and choose between PRO-sports betting or ANTI-sports betting. To participate, follow the link below to the qualifying round media case of your choice. While the media research, vehicles, and costs are identical, you can select either Winning Time Inc (pro-online sports betting) or Responsible Fans Inc (against online sports betting) to work with. Your case will be evaluated based solely on your media recommendations and not on your position on the hypothetical issue.

 The 2023/2024 Qualifying Round deadline is Sunday, January 28, 2024. Submissions must be uploaded here by 11:59 p.m. EST. This portion of the competition may be completed as an individual if you do not have a teammate. If you qualify to move on into the next phase of the competition, the Washington Media Scholars Foundation will match you with a partner to form a team.


Semi-Finalists Selected

Semifinalists will be selected on or before February 9,2024.


Read the Documents

Final 2024 Media Case Documents coming on February 9, 2024

Please note, Semifinalists must upload Media Plans by March 17, 2024, 11:59 p.m. EST.


Submit your Media Plan

Submit your Media Plan via the form below before 11:59 p.m. EST on March 17, 2024. If you have trouble uploading your documents, please email them (along with all information requested here) to by the deadline.


Finalists Selected

On or by March 29, six finalist teams will be selected and invited to participate in Media Scholars Week in Washington, DC. Finalists will receive an all-expenses-paid trip to DC from June 2, 2024 to June 7, 2024, where they will present their Media Plans to a panel of judges. Finalists will take part in networking with media companies and participate in a variety of career prep/professional development sessions with national experts and leaders during the week of June 2nd, with additional virtual sessions taking place in late May as well.  The judging and final presentations will take place on June 6, 2024, as will the awards presentation.

For more information about WMSF and its programs, please contact Executive Director, Tori McMichael at

If your organization is interested in joining us as one of our sponsors, please contact the foundation using the link below.


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