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210 youth from across Minnesota participated in statewide engineering challenge

Photo credit: Max Haynes
Over 200 youth demonstrated teamwork, creativity and innovation at the 4-H Engineering Design Challenge.

The energetic buzz of 210 youth preparing for show was hard to miss at Minnesota 4-H’s annual Engineering Design Challenge on Aug. 6. The event welcomed youth from across the state in a fun learning event that encouraged teamwork, innovation and lots of creativity.

Using the engineering design process, teams of 3rd – 12th graders built complex machines that accomplished a simple task: planting and watering a single seed.

Each team spent weeks, and in some cases months, building the perfect machine to meet the challenge. They used 4-H curriculum to explore engineering principles and tested multiple designs and equipment as they went. 4-H adult volunteers guided each team, providing meeting space, helping to secure materials and learning right alongside the young people.
"I think the best part of the 4-H Engineering Design Challenge is how much youth and adults learn and grow together," reflected Michael Compton, Extension educator and 4-H STEM director. "They discover how to engineer machines, but also about STEM careers and important life skills they can use no matter what their future path."

Youth participants also engaged in STEM learning activities and met with industry leaders and business representatives during the daylong event in St. Cloud. It wrapped up with an awards ceremony, recognizing several teams for their high-quality designs.

See media coverage about the event from WJON and the St. Cloud Times.

Learn more about the 4-H Engineering Design Challenge.

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