Maryland Engineering Challenges

The mission of the Maryland Engineering Challenges is to introduce students in grades 1 to 12 to the role of engineers in today’s society and connect what students learn in school with real-world engineering concepts.

Participating in the Challenges helps students develop comprehension and problem-solving skills; encourages teamwork and self-confidence; and can promote meaningful mentor relationships with engineering professionals.

In addition to developing students’ STEM skills (science, technology, engineering, and math), each Challenge also integrates reading, writing, and public speaking with hands-on, project-based learning.

Click here for a brochure about the 2020 Challenges

Still have questions? Contact Education Manager Jessica Celmer and sign up for our emails.

Interested in the Challenges but not sure how to start?

Coaches’ Information Session
Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Drop in throughout the evening to meet the engineers who judge each Challenge. They will answer questions, demonstrate past projects, and explain requirements. This Session is not required and there is no cost to participate.

Registration encouraged. Email

Important Information

Each team must have an adult Coach register them online before written reports are handed in. Click here to register a team.

Each Coach must pay a $5 fee. One fee covers all teams with that Coach. Click here to pay your Coach’s Fee online.

Please read Challenge Guides carefully, as rules or specs may change from year to year. Additional information may be found in the appropriate Information Sheet.

Elementary School Level

Elementary School Information Sheet

Paper Airplane — Grades 1 to 5
Date: February 22, 2020
Design a paper airplane to safely fly a paperclip “passenger” as far and accurately as possible.
2020 Paper Airplane Guide

Safe Racer — Grades 2 and 3
February 22, 2020
Build a safe and speedy car to allow the “driver,” Eggbert[a], to survive a crash test and distance trial.
2020 Safe Racer Guide
2020 Safe Racer FAQs

Middle School Level

Middle School Information Sheet

Future City — Grades 6, 7 and 8
January 18, 2020
Design a city of the future using SimCity software and create a model of one area.
Contact James Brown at for details.
For more information go to:
2020 Future City Information Sheet 

Robot — Grades 6 to 8
Sunday, April 26, 2020
Construct a two or four leg robot to walk under direction over uneven terrain.
2020 Robot Guide

Hovercraft — Grades 6 to 8
Date: Sunday, April 26, 2020
Build the fastest hovercraft to travel across the “Chesapeake Bay.”
2020 Hover Craft Guide 

Straw Bridge — Grades 6 to 8
Date: January 18, 2020
Construct a plastic straw bridge to support a scale model truck for one minute.
2020 Straw Bridge Guide
SB Design Guide
SB Report Guide

High School Level

High School Information Sheet

Wood Bridge — Grades 9 to 12
January 18, 2020
Design a structurally efficient bridge to hold the maximum load before breaking.
Contact Michael Newman at for details.
2020 Wood Bridge Information Sheet
2020 International Bridge Rules

Robot — Grades 9 to 12
Sunday, April 26, 2020
Construct a two or four leg robot to walk under direction over uneven terrain.
2020 Robot Guide

Cargo Ship — Grades 9 to 12
Sunday, April 26, 2020
Design and demonstrate a ship to carry containerized cargo over a water course.
2020 Cargo Ship Guide

Sponsored by:
BD Diagnostics | BGE-an Exelon Company | The Engineering Society of Baltimore | KELVIN | Northrop Grumman | W.R. Grace |
Michael Hinkey | Kathryn Benson | The Propeller Club 

Supported by:
Technology & Engineering Educators Association of Maryland

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