From Competition to Careers: Celebrating 20 Years!

Out of over 17,000 students, the top five teams will compete on June 10 in a Q&A session on stage with a panel of judges. The questions encompass the research the students performed in the making of their 5-7 minute videos on sustainability.

On June 11, Kate the Chemist will present thrilling experiments and a great talk about STEM careers, followed by the award of almost $50,000 in scholarships!


Monday, June 10th – National Challenge Student Competition (2:00 – 5:00 PM CST) (Free to attend)
Tuesday, June 11th – National Challenge Dinner & Awards Ceremony (6:00 – 9:00 PM CST) (Ticketed Event)

Tickets available for the Dinner & Awards Ceremony as individuals ($250) or couples ($475). All sponsors receive a table of 10.  Sponsorships begin at $3,000, so all sponsors receive 10 tickets. Tickets are available here.

What is the Challenge?

Celebrating its 20th Anniversary in 2024, The Challenge is a team-based competition for 5th- through 8th-grade students that builds interest and excitement among students to continue science and STEM-related education throughout high school, skilled trades, college, and into the workforce.

Student teams compete at Regional Challenge events organized by CEF’s industry volunteers and produce videos focused on sustainability questions and community-based solutions.

The five top teams will compete at the National Challenge in Houston, Texas, held on June 10-11 for $50K in scholarships that can used for skilled training, career certifications, and college.

The Challenge incorporates essential skills such as critical thinking, effective communication, entrepreneurship, and problem-solving— the very skills required to thrive in their academic careers and as they enter the workforce.