Chowdhury STEM Innovation Contest

This contest was made possible by a generous donation from the Subir and Malini Chowdhury Foundation through the SAE Foundation.

Participation Guidelines


Mentors are responsible for registering students and serving as the primary contact. The first 25 mentors will receive a free STEM kit from AWIM!

Each AWIM kit explores a range of STEM topics and includes a complete curriculum with hands-on materials for approximately 30 students. Kits are available for PreK-8th grade. Mentors may use or donate the kit to the STEM class or club of their choice.

Registration for 2021-2022 is now closed. Check back for details on the 2022-2023 contest.


Mentors will receive access and instructions for a submission portal upon registration. By submitting, mentors certify that the entry is solely the student(s)’ original work.

The submission deadline for 2021-2022 is now closed.


Final projects may include multiple files or formats as needed to meet the complete requirements (see rubric). Note that the STEM solution may be a fully developed idea; it does not have to be physically manufactured or implemented.

The goal is to share innovative STEM ideas that inform, engage, and inspire others.

The Issue (100-300 words):

  • Include an interpretation of the problem based on a personal insight or observation.
  • Describe at least one major cause and effect based on knowledge and research.
  • Explain why it is critical to address the problem.

The STEM Solution (images + 200-400 words):

  • Include a visual representation of the design or proof-of-concept.
  • Describe what would make the design an innovative and effective solution.
  • Explain at least one STEM concept that would be a key part of the solution.

The Digital Presentation (length and format may vary):

  • Include an engaging or interactive component for audiences (see Examples below).
  • Describe a fictional or real-world scenario of the solution being applied.
  • Explain the key facts and takeaway using at least two different mediums (text, art, graphics, video, audio clip, etc.).


Topics and formats are not limited to the following options. Students are encouraged to think outside the box!

Issue Topics may have local, national, or global impacts:

  • Conflict
  • Climate Change
  • Education Access
  • Food and Water Security
  • Health Care and Wellness
  • Inequality
  • Poverty

STEM Solution Designs must be shareable in a digital format:

  • CAD Drawing, Graph, or Diagram
  • Computer Animation
  • Photos of 3D Model or Prototype
  • Scanned Images of Illustrations
  • Video Demonstration

Presentation Formats must be shareable in a digital format:

  • Comic Book, Storybook, Guided Journal --- ebook, link, multimedia
  • Website, Blog, App, Podcast --- link, code
  • Vlog, Video (animated, stop-action, documentary, trailer) --- link, multimedia
  • Game, Group Activity (virtual or hands-on) --- demo, instructions
  • Scavenger Hunt, Audio Tour, Interview Series --- instructions, recording
  • Performance, Event (live or virtual) --- script, plans, recording
  • Marketing Campaign, Art Project, eCard Set --- link, multimedia