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This year’s STEAM Tank Challenge received over 590 applications from 71 school districts and 105 schools statewide.  Over 427 teams from 19 New Jersey counties delivered presentations virtually in the regional rounds. Sixty teams qualified for the final presentations held at the end of May.

STEAM Tank is an opportunity for student teams to identify situations that require innovative solutions to reimagine and redesign New Jersey communities, so they are sustainable, healthy, equitable and safe for everyone. The New Jersey School Boards Association has seen first-hand that STEAM Tank builds valuable soft skills that aid students in school, when they enter the workforce and when facing future challenges.

This year’s challenge featured determined high school teams who focused on designing and developing a variety of solutions. High school teams worked on sustainable and affordable braces for injuries, focused on harnessing water energy from downspouts, automating the watering of household plants and more.

Middle school teams worked diligently to automate nursing duties and improve public health, create a speech communication device for the mute and deaf, and generate heat from composting as an alternative source for classroom use and more. Elementary teams focused on spreading community awareness for both visible and invisible disabilities, working with local law enforcement to stop fentanyl usage, stimulating memories for those who suffer from dementia, learning difficulties, and traumatic brain injuries and more.

On June 3, the top three high school teams were announced at the STEAM Tank Virtual Awards ceremony with $5,000 in prize money awarded. Since many high school seniors are moving onto college, trade schools, or the work force, the NJSBA is revealing results now instead of waiting until Workshop in October.

The winning high school teams are:

  • Team RICE Pack: Hoboken High School, $2,500.
  • Downspout Dynamo: Hawthorne High School, $1,500
  • Viritech: Ridgewood High School, $1,000

The NJSBA is also announcing the top three elementary and middle school teams, who will present at the Workshop in Atlantic City, Oct. 22-23, where $10,000 in prize money will be awarded.

Middle School Division
  • Nurse Zero/Assist: Demarest Middle School.
  • Mute Assistance Speech Communicator: Hartford Upper Elementary.
  • Compost Coalition: PS#28, Christa McAuliffe.
  • Alternate middle school team: Touch up brush, Haddonfield Middle School.
Elementary Division
  • Recall It: Woodbridge Gifted and Talented Program.
  • Door to Your Heart App: Alice Costello Elementary.
  • Fentanyl Fighters: Knollwood School.
  • Alternate elementary school team: Robix, Central Avenue School

Prize money is sponsored by the Education Leadership Foundation of New Jersey, which will provide $15,000 for teams to invest back into their STEAM programs. ELFNJ was formed to advance the governance of New Jersey’s public schools through training and research. Programs funded by ELFNJ, in partnership with the NJSBA, work to advance student achievement and improve school board governance, and in the past year have touched on areas ranging from sustainability to school safety.

Digital badges were awarded for special recognition categories and can be found on our STEAM Tank Facebook page.

A special note of thanks to our STEAM Tank’s judges, subject matter experts, and mentors who are the backbone of this student achievement driven program. They are volunteers from various backgrounds and expertise who serve as mentors and provide constructive feedback to help teams along their STEAM Tank journey. Without their unwavering support, this program would not be possible.

We will see our teams in September for STEAM Tank Challenge 2025.

For further information, please contact the NJSBA via email.