Student Challenge

The purpose of the Student Challenge is to allow middle and high school students to think creatively, conduct background research, and develop a proposal for a unique solution that can help address important problems that face the medical field. Through this process, students will be able to think like scientists and learn how to make existing technologies even better.

Access Student Challenge


The theme for the Student Challenge is Healthcare improvements due to Bioinformatics. We want students to have room to explore their own interests and see how computational and engineering methods can be applied to the topic.

Examples of Healthcare improvements due to Bioinformatics include:

  • Pharmaceutical Discovery
  • Genetic Screening
  • Personalized Diagnostics

Students should think about how computer science and engineering solutions can help improve healthcare. The competition is not limited to areas mentioned above.

Before the Symposium:

Students should brainstorm and think of ideas within the scope of the topic Healthcare improvements due to Bioinformatics. All attendees interested in participating in the Student Challenge will add the title and abstract for their project during the registration process.  Attendees will have the opportunity to edit their registration to add their project information if they decide to participate after they have registered to attend.  All projects need to be in the registration system by May 13th.  All participants in the Student Challenge will receive an additional email with information on where and how to submit their project.  All projects must be uploaded by May 18th.

During the Symposium:

At the symposium, there will be scheduled time within the program when each participant in the Student Challenge will answer questions about their work with the various attendees at the symposium (family and friends) and will also present their work to the judges. The judges will score and determine the top projects, who will receive an award during the closing ceremonies.

Project Details:

Before the symposium all participants in the Student Challenge MUST upload their project.  Your submission should be between 3-5 minutes and consist of voice over slides or a video. All Student Challenge submissions will be available for on-demand viewing 48 hours before the symposium.

  • Save your presentation as an MP4 file with the first name, last name, and project title.
  • Slides should be widescreen16x9 ratio which export best to 1080p videos.

Some helpful tips on planning your recorded talk are available at these links:

Presenting your poster in a lighting style format using the PechaKucha or Ignite talks presentation style or a single slide or PDF is an option for presenters.

Here is a example of a presentation:

All projects must be uploaded by Tuesday, May 18, 2021.

At the Student Challenge, individuals will be assigned a virtual table and be available to answer questions about their project. 

Judging Criteria:

I. Research Question (15 pts)
  clear and focused purpose
  identifies contribution to field of study
  testable using scientific methods
II. Design and Methodology (10 pts)
  well designed plan and data collection methods
III. Creativity (15 pts)
  project demonstrates significant creativity in one or more of the above criteria
IV. Presentation (20 pts)
  clear, concise, thoughtful responses to questions
  understanding of basic science relevant to project
  recognize the potential impact on social and ethical issues
  quality of ideas for further research
Total Points Possible: 60

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