Student Simulation Competition - Rules and Guidelines

Rules & Guidelines

  1. Teams are given approximately ten calendar weeks (less at the discretion of instructors) to develop a Simio solution for a case study which is provided by Simio. This case study will be a realistic problem drawn from actual user projects.
  2. Teams are comprised of one to four students. If any team members are graduates, the team size is limited to 2 students. Only students currently enrolled at a college/university are eligible.
  3. A faculty advisor is expected to distribute and explain the project and rules and submit the best entries from their school. There is no limit to the number of teams that can register, however each faculty advisor can submit a maximum of three projects to the global competition. We encourage faculty with more than 3 potential entries to hold a local preliminary competition with at most the top 3 finalists submitted to the global competition.
  4. Faculty advisors planning to offer the case in their classes must complete the registration form on simio.com/academics/student-competition.php. The project case description will be sent to the faculty advisor upon completion of the registration.
  5. The contest is held twice yearly: Once in February – early May with judging in late May and once in September – early December with judging in late December.
  6. Solutions are submitted online and include a written Executive Summary, an optional Explanatory Appendix, the Simio model(s), and two videos described below. All presentations must be in English.
  7. Provide a Team Introduction video (maximum 2 minutes) to introduce the college/university and project team members. This will not be shared with judges, but will be used in introductions.
  8. Provide a Project Presentation video (maximum 10 minutes) to clearly explain your solution. You may use slides and video recordings from the model but should not include university logos, templates, or other identifying materials of the university/college or team members. Any identifying material in the project presentation could bias judges and risks disqualification.

    This video should not introduce the problem – that is done outside this presentation. Rather it should describe the solutions recommended and the approaches taken to create those solutions with special attention to satisfying the judging criteria.

    Both videos must be posted by the teams as unlisted YouTube videos (unlisted so that competing teams cannot see your solutions). For teams unable to access YouTube, arrangements can also be made to directly submit your videos. A link to each video shall be submitted with the project.
  9. Teams should use the Judging Criteria as a checklist to ensure that they have addressed all relevant issues. Judging is done by a panel of commercial and academic judges using this Judging Criteria. Judging of the projects will be blind based on the submitted Simio model and the Project video. The Team Introduction video will be withheld from the judges, and the names of the judges will be withheld until final judging is complete.
  10. The project is submitted online at http://www.simio.com/academics/student-competition.php and must include the following:
    1. The Simio model for the project.
    2. A written Executive Summary, not to exceed 2 pages that provides a brief written summary of your recommendations.
    3. You are encouraged to include an appendix containing any project background you choose to share. For example, you might explain how you approached difficult modeling tasks. The appendix may be written informally and will not itself be judged, but the content may be used by judges in evaluating your work.
    4. Links to the Team Introduction Video and Project Presentation Video.
    5. A letter signed by the faculty advisor and team members certifying that the project work was completed solely by the team members.
    6. Contact information for the advisor and team members, along with a publication quality photo of the team members (at least 300 dpi).
    7. Submission is completed upon receipt of a confirming email from Simio.
  11. Three winners are selected and announced at an online Awards Ceremony that is held in December and May. Excerpts from the Team Introduction and Project Presentation videos for the winning teams are shown during this online conference.
  12. Cash prizes will include: First Place - $1500, Second Place - $1000, and Third Place - $500. Honorable mentions and other non-cash awards may also be presented. All cash awards are divided equally among the participating team members. In addition to the cash awards, winners receive personal, faculty, and school award certificates and are announced on the Simio website, newsletter, and by other means. Students have the option of including their contact information to encourage networking and job offers.
  13. Simio LLC has the rights to show and display submitted work. The winning presentations are posted on the Simio website for general viewing.

Success Tips

The following are a few tips that should be considered:

  1. The competition projects are used in many different ways – the students and faculty involved use these projects to fulfill wide varying objectives. For that reason each problem has both a base problem and optional extensions. The faculty and students involved can determine the appropriate scope and level of effort.
  2. While you can use software in your school labs and classrooms, we recommend that you instead use the Simio Student Version so you have unlimited access. After you have registered for the competition you may also request a license upgrade to the Unlimited Simio Student Version so that model size is not a constraint. If you expect to include scheduling aspects in your model, also request the Unlimited Student Enterprise Edition to expose the full planning and scheduling feature set.
  3. We recommend using the most recently available Simio version or at least the latest public release.
  4. Create reports that clearly summarize the options explored, results recorded, and your recommendations.
  5. In both your video and backup materials, assume that you have a mixed audience – a board of directors that includes both technical and non-technical managers, all with expertise in the problem domain.
  6. Since this is a team competition it is important that your project reflect your team’s work, not that of any student assistant or faculty advisor. That said, this is also a learning endeavor and it is perfectly acceptable to seek help in learning modeling skills as well as the project management and other skills necessary to successfully complete the project.
  7. Students do not have access to direct Simio support, but we encourage you to take full advantage of the resources on the Simio Support Ribbon including the Simio Help, SimBit solutions, Simio Videos, On-line Books, and Textbooks, as well as take your questions to the Simio Insiders User Forum to solicit appropriate help (“how does this feature work”, not “how do I solve this”) from the user community.
  8. There is one user forum specifically dedicated to this competition: http://www.simio.com/forums/viewforum.php?f=39 . Any clarifications or project news will be posted here. You are encouraged to join the Simio Insiders User Forum and take advantage of the wealth of information available there.
  9. Please carefully read the Rules and Guidelines to ensure that you follow all the rules. Look to the Judging Criteria to see how your work will be evaluated.
  10. There are many ways to approach this problem, many opportunities to “fill in the blanks” by making reasonable assumptions, many options to evaluate, and many opportunities to demonstrate creativity. This is a tough problem and it is OK to simplify or ignore options. Just simply do the best you can in the allotted time.