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The challenge invited graduate students from across the nation to submit innovative ideas to prepare them for tomorrow's opportunities and challenges. Entrants were encouraged to submit ideas with the potential to improve graduate education and professional development. Ideas could be oriented to students, faculty, departments, institutions, professional societies, and/or federal agencies. Participation in the challenge was limited to currently-enrolled STEM graduate students. They were invited to submit by April 15, 2013, a 1,000- to 1,500-word response to this challenge.

The challenge was launched at a time when graduate education in STEM could be considered to be at a crossroads. Several reports have recently raised concerns about graduate education in STEM and the need to better prepare students for a range of career options in an increasingly global and competitive world. The challenge specifically asked for students to voice their ideas in the broader discussion of graduate education.

The challenge, developed and administered by NSF's Division of Graduate Education, offered cash prizes to first-, second- and third-place winners, selected by a panel of judges of current and recent STEM graduate students as well as experts in higher education in two rounds of judging. In addition, the public at large was invited to vote for their favorite submission from among 53 finalists to select the Community Choice winner, who also won a cash prize.

More than 500 teams submitted entries to the challenge, representing more than 700 STEM graduate students, 155 universities/institutions and 47 states, as well as Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C.

graduate school

Grand Canyon University

Since 1949, Grand Canyon University has been a premier private university in Arizona, helping students find their purpose and achieve their potential through landing the career of their dreams, advancing their career and changing careers. As a...

Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Online, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming

Grantham University

Grantham University’s 100% accredited online degrees are convenient, portable and designed so you can fit education into your life instead of arranging life around your education. Working adults who wish to keep pace require a dependable, flexible way...

Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Online, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wyoming

Independence University

Independence University belongs to a family of colleges and universities with educational roots dating back to 1891. In 1978, IU began to offer education at a distance and operated as California College for Health Sciences. In 2005 it became...

Online

Liberty University

Liberty University is the largest private, nonprofit university in the nation, the largest university in Virginia, and the largest Christian university in the world. Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains on more than 7,000 beautiful acres in Lynchburg...

Online

Lynn University

Lynn's mission is to provide an innovative, global and personalized education that enables students to realize their potential.

Online

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