Grand Challenge Scholars Program
The University of Idaho College of Engineering is committed to a special academic program designed to prepare students to solve the 14 Grand Challenges of Engineering in the 21st century. U of I is among a select group of engineering schools nationwide that plan to graduate more than 20,000 formally recognized “Grand Challenge Engineers” over the next decade. Will you be one of those engineers? The college is now accepting students into the U of I Grand Challenge Scholars Program (U of I GCSP).
The 14 Grand Challenges
The National Academy of Engineering (NAE), at the request of the National Science Foundation (NSF), convened a committee of leading technical thinkers to identify the Grand Challenges for Engineering in the 21st Century.
- Make solar energy economical
- Provide energy from fusion
- Develop carbon sequestration methods
- Manage the nitrogen cycle
- Provide access to clean water
Joy of Living
- Reverse-engineer the brain
- Enhance virtual reality
- Advance personalized learning
- Engineer the tools of scientific discovery
U of I Program Components
While the exact requirements to the U of I Grand Challenge Scholar Program are currently under-development the program will be a combined curricular and extra-curricular program with five components designed to prepare students to address the grand challenges facing society in this century. All students who complete the program successfully will receive a distinction of Grand Challenge Scholar endorsed by University of Idaho and the National Academy of Engineering.
- Hands-on Project OR Research Experience
- Interdisciplinary Curriculum
- Global Dimension
- Service Learning
Grand Challenge Pitch Event
Every fall the College of Engineering holds a pitch event in conjunction with the acceptance of a new class of Grand Challenge Scholars. Students pitch their projects to an assembly of judges made up of faculty, alumni and members of the U of I Academy of Engineers with the purpose of securing funding for their ideas. Learn more about the Grand Challenge Pitch Event.
Declaration of Interest
If you are interested in becoming a future U of I Grand Challenge Scholar, use the below form to register to receive future enrollment information about the program. Thank you.
General Program Inquiries and Questions
Reverse Engineering the Brain
Tavara Freeman, Computer Engineering and Grand Challenge Scholar, forges her own path, from breaking stereotypes to learning biomarkers of Lou Gherig’s Disease.