Are you ready for a Challenge?

The Minerva Challenge is an opportunity for you to demonstrate your problem-solving skills. This six-week program will give you the opportunity to apply design thinking skills to a problem facing students around the world: how to reimagine education post-COVID-19. As students who have been dramatically impacted by the global pandemic, we know you have innovative ideas and solutions for how to ensure you and your classmates continue to have quality educational opportunities.

This is your chance to work within a small team and share your best ideas. After partnering with Minerva student mentors and refining your pitch, the Minerva Challenge winning team will be awarded a $1,000 USD prize and, if qualified, a $10,000 Minerva Scholarship.

The Challenge

Due to the outbreak of COVID-19, education systems around the globe have shut down and effective learning has taken a backseat. Without a clear plan at national levels, each high school and university has had to design and implement its own alternative methods of continuing education.

As President of the Innovation Committee at your high school or university, the administration tasked you with creating a cohesive plan to restart educational opportunities for all students within the next six weeks. The new method must be accessible to all students previously served and ensure that the quality and effectiveness of the education is not compromised —ideally, it is enhanced. Due to the uncertainty as to when educational institutions will be able to re-open in person, it is imperative that the model be sustainable in nature.

You are expected to deliver your idea in the form of a written, video, audio, or PowerPoint slides format by the deadline 11:59 pm PT on November 15, 2020.

You are permitted to work with up to two other individuals of your choice to create this presentation. The final report will be submitted to the Challenge team judges and must include an overview of your plan, the resources needed, measures of feasibility and effectiveness, and potential limitations.

The Process

Welcoming participants from around the world, the Minerva Challenge will mostly happen asynchronously and rely heavily on collaboration with your team, consisting of you and up to two other individuals.

Your Mentors

To support you in this journey, three current Minerva students will be available to provide advice and mentorship to the teams. From helping you hone your problem statement to sharing resources to bolster your submission, please feel free to reach out to them throughout the challenge.

Mentor Sessions

Join one of the mentoring sessions to ask the team any questions you may have about the Challenge or their Minerva experience.

In addition to the mentors hosting the sessions, we have created regional Whatsapp groups. Here you can seek the advice of our mentors as well as speak with the other participants.

WhatsApp Africa, Middle East & Pakistan


Who can participate?

This is open to students in their final years of high school or those who have completed high school within the last two years (graduated from high school in 2019 or later.) Most participants will be between the ages of 16-20. You can be located anywhere in the world as long as you have consistent access to the internet so you can engage with mentors and your teammates.

How do I join?

Please complete the signup form at the top of this page. At the time of registration, you will be asked to include a team name and the teams of others participating with you. We will follow up with additional information as the event progresses.

What are the evaluation criteria?

Submissions will be judged on the following aspects:

  • Concept
  • Creativity and innovation
  • Practicality and realistic capability
  • Individual contribution and team work
  • Overall presentation