Global Engineering Challenge

Engage with experts in engineering, develop critical thinking skills, and create solutions to global issues.

The Global Engineering Challenge aims to broaden the minds of Grade 9–12 students. This program mimics a capstone style course and is designed for highly committed and motivated students who have an interest in problem-solving. 

Each week, students will have the opportunity to engage with experts in engineering, mental health and sustainability. Students will participate in workshops that will provide them with a deeper understanding of the challenges engineers face and be guided towards developing effective solutions. This program supports the goals of the Faculty of Applied Science & Engineering in preparing students with the technical and trans-disciplinary competencies necessary for them to identify, learn, and apply along with engineering practices to resolve global challenges, create new technologies and contribute to the prosperity of society. 

The Global Engineering Challenge is a remote, online and accessible opportunity. We are excited to present this opportunity as part of our Online Fall Programming and hope that you will accept this challenge.

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PROGRAM FORMAT

Students will be assigned to a specific focus based on their grade level which will act as their focus theme throughout the program. Grade 9 & 10 students will focus on one topic and Grade 11 & 12 students on another. 

This program runs every Saturday from October 17th to December 5th. Every Saturday will consist of two sessions with a break in-between.  The first session focuses on content and practical demonstration and in the second session students will work in teams to prototype their designs. Students will also be invited to participate in optional activities that focus on degree and career exploration, personal development, and community-building.

In addition to engineering design workshops, students will have the opportunity to participate in life skills seminars that will cover a variety of topics to help them further develop skills that will help them succeed beyond the classroom.

FOCUS TOPICS

Grade 9 and 10 students will focus on the challenge of mental health among children aged 11-13. Approximately 1 in 5 children in Ontario deal with a mental health challenge but only 3 out of 10 seek professional help. Factors such as socioeconomic status, family status, education institutions, social media, societal expectations, and healthcare accessibility can impact our will to seek and receive help. As the world becomes more digital, people also spend more time on devices which also has an impact on our well-being. As a collective, we need to take action and establish effective support systems that will benefit not only ourselves but for future generations. 

Mental health is an important part of our daily lives. Building resources and institutions that can support mental health needs is an essential step in creating and maintaining resilience. We hope this challenge will further educate students regarding mental health and encourage participants to think creatively to promote overall well-being amongst youth.

 

Grade 11 and 12 students will focus on the challenge of building an accessible and sustainable toilet. In 2011, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation initiated the Rebuild the Toilet Challenge after researchers noted that traditional toilets involve extensive sewer networks, running water and can be extremely expensive. Since then, researchers all over the world have been developing novel ideas to tackle this problem to create a toilet that could be affordable and sustainable to all. 

There are two sessions— in the first session, students will gain a deeper understanding of what engineering is and how engineers design sustainable products. 

During the second session, students will spend time working on their designs in teams using the skills gained in the earlier session.

The environment is an important part of our world—it provides us with the resources to live and thrive as humans. This challenge will give students the skills to think critically about our environment and to develop practical solutions on how we can move towards a more sustainable community. As engineers, we are part of a global inter-woven community and it is our responsibility to develop solutions that will benefit all those parts of it.

SCHEDULE

All times are in Eastern Daylight Time. (EDT) (UTC -4)

Maximum number of students per section: 20 

 

Grade 9/10:

Section A: 10 AM–12 PM & 12:30 PM–2 PM 

Section B: 1 PM–3 PM & 3:30 PM–5 PM

 

Grade 11/12:

Section C: 12 PM–2 PM & 2:30 PM–4 PM 

Section D: 2:30 PM–4:30 PM & 5 PM–6:30 PM

 

* When registering please choose a section whose time works for every week of the program. 

WEEKLY TOPICS

Grade 9/10

  • Week 1 - October 17th

    Engineering Design Workshop + Mental Health Challenge

  • Week 2 - October 24

    Designing your Mental Health Products

  • Week 3 - October 31

    Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in Design

  • Week 4 - November 7

    Ethics and Privacy in Design

  • Week 5 - November 21

    Prototyping your Design

  • Week 6 - November 21

    Financial Literacy + Business

  • Week 7 - Novmber 21

    Website Design Workshop

  • Week 8 - December 5

    Introduction to Post-Secondary Education Workshop + Final Design Presentations

Grade 11/12

  • Week 1 - October 17th

    Engineering Design Workshop + Introduction to the Reinvent the Toilet Challenge

  • Week 2 - October 24

    The Mechanics Behind Toilet Design

  • Week 3 - October 31

    Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in Toilet Design

  • Week 4 - November 7

    Designing a Sustainable Toilet

  • Week 5 - November 21

    Prototyping your Design

  • Week 6 - November 21

    Financial Literacy + Business

  • Week 7 - Novmber 21

    Website Design Workshop

  • Week 8 - December 5

    Introduction to Post-Secondary Education Workshop + Final Design Presentations

FAQ's

What technology do I need for remote learning?

U of T has compiled a list of Recommended Technology Requirements for Remote/Online Learning. Students taking part in the Global Engineering Challenge will need a computer (tablets are not recommended), internet access with a minimum download speed of 5Mbps, speakers, and microphone (or headset).

Do you provide bursaries for this program?

Yes, we do. A completed bursary form is required to be considered for a bursary. Note that if your 2019 notice of assessment doesn’t reflect your current situation due to COVID-19, please explain your current situation further in the form linked above.

What is the weekly time commitment?

The GEC program requires 3.5 hours of participation per Saturday and a maximum of 1.5 hours of optional activities throughout the week. 

PROGRAM FEES


$230 for 8 weeks

If you have questions about Global Engineering Challenge:

Contact us at outreach@ecf.utoronto.ca

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