THE COMPETITION

Project in a Box is hosting its first annual innovation challenge competition! It’s a competition formed in the spirit of hands-on project building that focuses on lasting impacts of projects that are not only built to benefit the students building it, but also the students that follow. This can be done through well-written documentation to really highlight a key feature of how we impact: through our ability to communicate our ideas in the form of written and verbal communication. Due to COVID-19, this year, projects with any hardware aspect will not be judged on performance, only design.

REGISTER HERE!

Motivation

Project in a Box is hosting its first annual innovation challenge competition! It’s a competition formed in the spirit of hands-on project building that focuses on lasting impacts of projects that are not only built to benefit the students building it, but also the students that follow. This can be done through well-written documentation to really highlight a key feature of how we impact: through our ability to communicate our ideas in the form of written and verbal communication.

 

In this competition, theme is open to anything the students can create. Our team motto is “Dream it, Build it.” All ideas are fair game and do not need to be original. So, what needs to be original? The corresponding documentation written up for the project. We describe more about it in the section below.

 

Track Descriptions

 

There are four tracks of project types that students can create: outreach projects, engineering projects, research projects, and start up projects.

  • Outreach projects are typically projects catered to grade school students and teach a particular concept to the target demographic. The length and complexity of the project would need to take the target demographic with zero experience approximately 3-4 hours to complete the project within the scope of a self-contained workshop.

  • Engineering projects are projects with a topic scope that is more relevant and advanced enough for college level students (i.e. machine learning, internet of things, databases, etc.). The length and complexity of the project would need to take a college student with zero experience approximately 30 minimum hours to complete. 

  • Research projects are academic projects conducted in a setting such as UC San Diego. In the spirit of our research community, this track is all about quality and innovative research. The scope and length of the research is up to the student; however, the challenge will be in writing up a manuscript for the research. In this track, students would submit to the competition their publication-ready manuscript.

  • Startup projects are venture projects in which students pursue a business opportunity. Here, the innovative idea takes less of the spotlight: it is all about the market research and customer interviews. Students will develop a preliminary prototype of their project and perform the appropriate market landscape analysis to determine whether or not their startup can/will take off. 

 

Prizes

  • Grand Prize: $1,000 (overall winner)

  • Project Category Winners: $500 (one winner for each project type)

  • Popular: $250​​

 

Eligibility

  • All undergraduate students

  • All graduate students

  • Students taking hands-on courses highly encouraged

 

Guidelines and Requirements

  • 3 Minute Pitch: On the day of the competition, judges will listen to your team’s 3-minute pitch about the project. How you shape this three-minute pitch is up to you. They will score you based on how well it was delivered.

  • Demo-able Project: Bring your project! It’s game time. There’s no “it may work”, “it could work”, “it sorta works”. It has to work. Demo your project, tell us how it works, what you implemented, key features, motivation, etc. Careful: don’t repeat your pitch. Show that your project works and is functional. Big bonus if it's interactive and is tangible to the judges.

    • For projects with hardware: no actual hardware is required. We encourage you to build a functional prototype but due to the difficulties caused for COVID-19 for hardware-based teams, this will not impact judging. You are still required to demonstrate how it would work theoretically through pictures, video, or simulations. ​

  • DevPost Documentation: The most important part of the competition. Your DevPost submission must include a full documentation of your project. See below for the documentation guidelines for each track. You will show the judges your documentation. The more texture (videos, images, tutorials, GIFs, labeled data, etc.) the better.

    • Outreach Projects:

      • Create a step-by-step booklet of your project detailing how to assemble your project and provide context / information where appropriate. If you are showing a particular concept, make sure you write up the necessary description, diagrams, and schematics necessary for the student to understand the project.

      • How to Make a Manual: https://tinyurl.com/pibmanualx

      • Example: https://tinyurl.com/piblinjebot

      • The example above is one way of making the step-by-step booklet. If you have a better and more creative way of creating your manual to look professional and clear, we encourage it. If your project is more software oriented, definitely explore ways to document the project such that it is readable by the target demographic.

    • Engineering Projects:

    • Research Projects:

      • All research projects are required to have a publication-ready manuscript to submit as their documentation. Journal selection is extremely important, and we recommend thinking about using the appropriate journal with the appropriate journal template that relates most to your research.

      • Publication-ready manuscripts must not have been submitted to any journal prior to January 2021.

    • Startup Projects:

      • Startup teams will submit an executive summary detailing their business plan. The executive summary can include their company mission, statistics, clear need, clear solution, target customers and market, value proposition, market analysis (TAM, SAM, SOM analysis), competitor landscape, go-to-market strategy, financial projections, cost structure, revenue structure, key players, and a minimum of 50 customer interviews in the appendix.

      • The executive summary does not need to include everything listed here or in that order. However, during the process of evaluation, you may get asked questions from the judges that you need to be prepared to answer. It is advisable that you include as much information as possible in your executive summary.

      • It helps to first build a Business Model Canvas to organize your business plan.

Note on Intellectual Property

  • All undergraduate students own their own intellectual property on the project. However, in order to compete, documentation is required. Compete at your own discretion with an understanding of what needs to be written up to participate.

  • All graduate students are subjected to university rules and regulations on their intellectual property.

  • Project in a Box does not own any of your material.

 

Funding

  • Students are encouraged to find their own funding or personally invest into their own project.

  • However, in order to receive funding from Project in a Box, you must be one of our active members.

    • To receive funding from Project in a Box, join here:

    • Funding for each track in Project in a Box

      • Outreach: $100

      • Engineering Project: $200

      • Research Project: $300

      • Startup Project: $250

      • All budgets are soft-capped. In order to increase funding, team members must demonstrate investment and contribution to team events, workshops, socials, etc.

    • If you are a Project in a Box member, you are required to put all files and documentation in the PiB Google Drive as you are working on the project.

 

Scoring Criteria

  • Scoring rubric will be released in March, closer to the competition date.

Dates and Times

  • Documentation Due Date: Friday, May 21, 2021 @ 11:59pm (to give the judges some time to see your material beforehand)

  • Competition Date: Friday, May 28, 2021

  • Location: Henry G. Booker Room and Zoom (link will be available on the day of the competition)

  • Time: TBA

Event Schedule on May 28, 2021

  • [Opening]: Mingling + Mini Social 

  • [Judging Round]: Judging from Industry, Alumni, Professors

  • [Dining/Games]: Dinner Banquet/Games

  • [Closing]: Prizes 

Getting Help for the Competition

Project in a Box is more than happy to assist or direct you to resources that you may find helpful. If you are struggling with something, please do not hesitate to contact us: pib@eng.ucsd.edu 

 

Other engineering organizations can also be of help as well, including IEEE, HKN, USC and many others. Don’t give up! Reach out for help. 

Team Size Limits

There is no limit to the team sizes (no max or min, you can also go solo if you choose). 

Withdrawing from the Competition

If for whatever reason you are unable to compete or your team is unable to compete, please email us at pib@eng.ucsd.edu

REGISTER NOW!

https://tinyurl.com/pibcompetition2021

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