The winners of the fourth annual STEAM Tank Challenge, sponsored by the NJSBA and the U.S. Army, were announced on Nov. 7. Over 550 student teams entered this year’s program, which culminated in final presentations by 90 student teams at NJSBA’s Workshop 2019 last month.

This year’s winning teams—nine in all—were introduced during a ceremony at last week’s NJEA Convention, with education leaders from across the state honoring the students for their creativity and achievement.

“The 2019 STEAM Tank Challenge engaged approximately 2,000 students, parents and teachers in a valuable education experience,” said Dr. Lawrence S. Feinsod, NJSBA executive director. “By working as a team, conducting research and solving problems as they arise, students learn how to create, innovate and meet challenges.

“NJSBA and our partner in this effort, the U.S. Army, thank the NJEA for demonstrating its support for the program by once again hosting the awards ceremony.”

In the first year of the contest, in 2016, there were 32 submissions with 17 teams selected to present their ideas and inventions at NJSBA’s Workshop conference in Atlantic City. This year, more than 550 teams applied, and 90 teams made it to the finals.

Applications for the 2020 STEAM Tank Challenge are available here.

Dozens of judges, including New Jersey Education Commissioner Lamont Repollet and Assistant Commissioner Cary Booker volunteered their time to score the student presentations. The PSEG Foundation donated prize money that will go to the winning teams in each grade level. Dale Rosselet, vice president for education for New Jersey Audubon, provided invaluable support.

Teams were asked to identify a real world problem or situation that needs resolution, or modify an existing product to make it better, or invent something that does not exist yet.

The 2019 winners are:

In the High School division:

First place: Henry Hudson Regional High School
Second place: Manasquan High School
Third place: Middlesex County Academy for Science, Mathematics, Engineering & Technology

In the Middle School Division:

First place: Howell Middle School South 
Second place: Pitman Middle School
Third place: Howell Middle School South 

In the Elementary Division:

First place: Aldrich Elementary School
Second place: Raritan Valley School
Third place: Memorial Elementary School

Two additional teams will be recognized by the New Jersey School Boards Association and the U.S. Army in the category of sustainability at a later date.