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IBM Master the Mainframe Contest 2020 for Students in Middle East & Africa

The largest student mainframe competition in the world has returned for its 14th year in a row with new prizes and new challenges for students around the world. Win prizes while gaining unique skills that will land you a career in Fortune 500 companies around the world! No experience needed!!

Application Deadline: 31st December 2019

Eligible Regions: N. America, Latin America, S. Asia, APAC, MEA, and Europe

About the Award: This unique, virtual contest is open globally to high school and college students to progressively teach mainframe skills in a real-world enterprise computing environment. Employers from around the globe use this contest to seek out potential candidates for mainframe careers.

Part 1: Learn the Basics: Meet the IBM Z mainframe and acquaint yourself with the user interfaces, the basic concepts, and data structures. IBM will provide step by step instructions to complete the challenges and set you up for success in Part 2.

Part 2: Practice: Students will program (advanced commands, system setup, and system navigation), develop (C, JAVA, COBOL, assembler, and REXX) and experience operating systems challenges on IBM Z.

Part 3: Try Challenges: Dive deeper using real-life scenarios encountered by experienced systems programmers. Challenges will put contestants to the test and identify those with the most drive and determination to master the mainframe

Type: Contest


  • Anyone who is currently a student at the high school or university level can compete — no experience is necessary.
  • The contest teaches the skills you’ll need and the competition difficulty increases as you progress through the contest phases.

Number of Awards: Numerous

Value of Award: 

  • Part 1 “Learn the Basics” Prizes:
    • $25 gift card to 300 randomly chosen from first 2,000 completions
  • Part 2 “Practice” Prizes:
    • Cash Prizes
    • $100 gift card to first 150 to complete
    • Exclusive QTUM Computer Webinar and Q&A Invite
    • Invite to randomly chosen 25 from all those that finish Part 2 correctly
  • Part 3 “Real World Challenge” Prizes:
    • $2750 travel stipend & IBM Master the Mainframe Hoodie to the top 2 individuals from EACH region
  • Grand Prize
    • The top 3 individuals globally will receive a $1,000 USD prize pack
  • Besides the awesome prizes, you can get unprecedented exposure to a variety of systems, software, and products.
  • You can earn an Enterprise Computing Open Badge for your resume and social presences to impress potential employers. Yup, that’s right.
  • This competition can even land you a job!


Visit Program Webpage for Details

Award Providers: IBM

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