UMES’ 2022 HBCU Battle of the Brains Team

Battle of the Brains is an annual national championship and experiential diversity recruiting showcase among HBCUs and other minority schools.  Student teams come up with out-of-pocket solutions, involving design, policy, business and STEM components, to a business challenge scenario provided by one of the sponsors of the competition. Sponsors include known corporations, such as the NFL, Expedia, Amazon, Intel and Walmart, among others. Participants are exposed to outstanding professional development opportunities, including meetings and interviews with human resources representatives from the sponsoring companies, opportunities to vie for scholarships and internships and potential for job recruitment. 

UMES’ Battle of the Brains 2023 team is looking for new members to join in the preparation meetings and competition, which takes place in Austin, Texas March 7-13. The team will be supported by travel funds and letters of excuse for classes for the time period of the competition.

The 2023 team is specifically seeking: 

  • 2 students majoring in computer science
  • 1 student majoring in engineering
  • 1 student majoring in marketing, digital media and communications
  • 1 student majoring in business with experience in writing business plans
  • 1 student majoring in data science/analytics
  • The captain of the team is a UMES student majoring in natural and environmental sciences who participated last year and can pass along valuable insight from the experience to members of the this year’s team. 

Except for the pre-determined captain, the rest of the team will be formed from the following criteria: application, transcript, letter of interest and interview. A member can also be selected based on the recommendation from the appropriate department chair and an interview, if the application is submitted by the department chair. Undergraduate and graduate students may apply. The team is required, per the competition guidelines, to be composed of 50 percent female and 50 percent Black students.

 Dr. Victoria Volkis, the Battle of the Brain mentor at UMES, will be accepting applications until December 16, at 5 p.m . Interviews will be conducted via zoom during the winter break and the team will start training and preparing during the spring semester. Weekly team meetings and crash courses will be provided in all fields relevant to the competition. A mock competition will also take place at UMES to prepare participants for the real thing in March. Accepted students will be required to sign a commitment agreement to participate in the competition and to attend all weekly meetings during the preparation time. 

To apply:

Undergraduate or graduate students applying individually, please email your unofficial transcripts, letter explaining why are you interested in participating and information on what kind of expertise would you add to the team to Dr. Victoria Volkis at

Department chairs are encouraged to email recommendations of relevant students to Volkis copying the student.  The student should them follow-up by sending her their transcripts and letter of interest.

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