Grand Challenges Scholars Program

Making Advancements in Today’s Challenges

The Ritchie School is looking for ambitious students who want to work collaboratively as part of a diverse team in order to find solutions to complex challenges such as virtual reality, solar energy, urban infrastructure, cybersecurity and clean water.

Creating Tomorrow’s Global Leaders

With a mission of advancing technical and scientific knowledge and capabilities to improve quality of life for our global society, the Ritchie School of Engineering and Computer Science is a natural fit for the Grand Challenges Scholar Program. The program is a unique opportunity for our students to gain the expertise, knowledge, and social, ethical and environmental awareness needed to become leaders in addressing the National Academy of Engineering’s Grand Challenges.

Our students have the unique opportunity to work with a team of fellow Grand Challenges Scholars towards sustainabilitysecurityhealth, and joy of living advancements while focusing on the five core Grand Challenges competencies.

  • GCSP Competencies

    – Hands-on Research project related to one of the Grand Challenges

    – Interdisciplinary curriculum

    – Entrepreneurship experience

    – Approaching work from a global and multi-cultural perspective

    – Social consciousness and service learning

  • What are the Grand Challenges

    At the turn of the century, the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) reviewed the engineering achievements that transformed our society and identified 14 Grand Challenges for the 21st century. The NAE identified these challenges with the goal of leveraging the expertise of engineers and computer scientists to find impactful solutions to real world problems.

    The Grand Challenges Scholars Program (GCSP), in turn, is designed to revolutionize our engineering and computer science education to prepare the next generation of engineers and computer scientists with the knowledge, skills, tools and mindset to solve these grand challenges.

  • Becoming a Grand Challenges Scholar

    All incoming students who are interested should enroll in the Engineering Connections Seminar (ENGR 1511). This course is required for all engineers, but we encourage everyone else interested in Grand Challenges to enroll as well. This is a one-credit class for the fall quarter.


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