Miner Creativity Challenge logo with a miner hat and gear.

Miner Creativity Challenge

S&T undergraduate and graduate students are invited to compete in the 2024 Miner Creativity Challenge.

This challenge is an opportunity for teams to design and build a toy focused on STEAM learning that will be assembled, played with and reviewed by grade school students ages 8–11.

In addition to mentorship from S&T faculty and staff, finalist teams will have access to maker spaces and Idea Labs in S&T’s new Innovation Lab and up to $20 of their supplies covered. A panel of professional judges and the grade school students will determine the winners.


Create a team of 3–5 and complete your registration by Feb. 4. Check the competition dates below for deadlines and required attendance.

Click to register

Spring 2024 Competition Dates

Jan. 24, 2024

Informal meeting

4 p.m. | Ozark Room, Havener Center

Feb. 4, 2024

Team registration deadline

Feb. 6, 2024

Observation of target audience interaction with toy on the market

5:30–6:30 p.m.

Feb. 19, 2024

Quad chart due

Feb. 23, 2024

Finalists announced

Week of March 10, 2024

First checkpoint meeting with mentor

Week of March 17, 2024

Second checkpoint meeting with mentor

Week of April 7, 2024

Third checkpoint meeting with mentor

April 18, 2024

Pitch video deadline

April 19–29, 2024

Judges review and score pitch videos

April 30, 2024

Final scoring and kid testing of designs with awards announced

May 1-8, 2024

Showcase of prototypes at the Curtis Laws Wilson Libaray- voting for People's Choice Award

May 8, 2024

People's Choice award winner announced 

Scholarship Prize Money

  • Kid’s choice will be awarded $1,000 first place; $750 second place; and $500 third place
  • Judges will award $3,000 first place; $2,000 second place; $1,000 third place
  • People’s choice award to encourage S&T community to come view and vote for their favorite will be a $500 award.

2023 Winning Teams

First Place

"Quick Draw Cannon" created by team members, from left, Andrew Banta, junior in computer science; Abby Womack, freshman in Mechanical Engineering; Brendan Crotty, junior in mechanical engineering;  Seth Huffman, freshman in mechanical engineering; and Nick Johnson, junior in mechanical engineering;

Second Place

"Tower Tumbler" created by team members, from left, Sebastian Davis, a senior in computer science; Evan Roach, a senior in mechanical engineering; Jacob Stobie, a senior in civil engineering; and Hayden Krumpelman, a senior in mechanical engineering.

Third Place

"Hydraulic Crane" created by team members, from left, Maxwell Attwood, a sophomore in mechanical engineering; Adam Kokal, a junior in mechanical engineering; Andrew Ellinghouse, a junior in architectural engineering; Braden Swift, a junior in economics; and Kyle Renkoski, a junior in mechanical engineering. Also pictured, far left, faculty mentor Dr. Jillian Schmidt, professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering.