Southeast Michigan

This IBM EdTech Youth Challenge will focus on issues that concern and involve young adults in St. Clair County, Michigan, and how those issues could be solved, in part, with IBM technologies.
Teams of 3 to 6 young adults (ages 15 to 25) will have the opportunity to think about a problem relating to environmental sustainability, malnourishment, poverty, or suicide, and design possible solutions to these issues through the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI), cybersecurity, or robotics.

While the southeast Michigan competition will focus on communities within St. Clair County, young adults residing in the state of Michigan that form teams will be eligible to compete in the EdTech Youth Challenge. Refer to our complete competition rules and regulations for eligibility requirements.
Our Partners
We're proud to be partnering with The INDUSTRY for this competition. The INDUSTRY focuses on community development through empowering and training young people. This is accomplished with their 3 key focuses:

— Identity and personal development,
— Career exploration, or exposure to careers, &
— Integration into the careers that fit the individual's skills and personality.

We're also proud to be partnering with Skillsoft for this competition, an organization committed to helping people and organizations achieve their fullest potential through learning and development. Skillsoft delivers online learning across a broad variety of in-demand topics combined with a powerful, flexible, and engaging platform. Offering inclusive options for all, Skillsoft:

— Helps companies build better leaders, stay safe, and follow critical regulations;
— Enables people to increase IT skills and earn essential certifications; and
— Helps learners develop skills and organizations build teams they need to stay ahead in a rapidly changing world.

Social issue areas

Environmental Sustainability

Projects that help humanity be more environmentally conscious and help reduce consumption and degradation of natural resources, and the effects climate change is having on our world and lives.

Human Trafficking

With St. Clair County's close proximity to Canada and major transportation networks between Canada and the United States, human trafficking is a significant issue facing communities in the county.


A systemic issue stemming from homelessness and poverty, young adults are not immune to the effects of hunger and lack of regular access to food.


Approximately 14% of the residents of St. Clair County live in poverty. Many of these individuals are young adults that have limited access to opportunity and chances to better their lives.


Suicide is a growing problem in many communities across the nation, particularly among young adults.

Applying technologies to social issues


Artificial intelligence enables computers and machines to mimic the perception, learning, problem-solving, and decision-making capabilities of the human mind.

Learn more →


Cybersecurity is the practice of protecting the integrity of networks, systems, devices and data from cyber attacks.

Learn more →


Today’s robots solve everyday problems and serve as helpers to humans. These robots are not the sentient stuff of sci-fi horror movies, but rather simple machines designed to perform a set of functions.

Learn more →

Competition overview

Competition launch & registration

Details of the competition will be announced, registration will open, and participants can gain access to online resources.


Project exploration, design, & build

Student teams will learn about AI, cybersecurity, and robotics, and apply their learning to a capstone project.


Submission deadline

Teams submit their final capstone projects for judging in the southeast Michigan Area EdTech Youth Challenge.



Six (6) teams will be selected as semi-finalists. The semi-finalist teams will then attend a one-day design session to build out their solution ideas with the help of experts from IBM, The INDUSTRY, and our partners. At the end of the design session, one (1) winning team will be announced.


Awards ceremony

An awards ceremony will be held following the announcement of the winning team.


The prize

The winning team will have a week-long immersive experience with experts from IBM and our partners to implement their solutions.

  1. September, 2020Competition launch & registration
  2. September – November, 2020Exploring, designing, & building capstone projects
  3. November 20, 2020Submission deadline
  4. December 12, 2020Virtual design workshop for semi-finalist teams
  5. December 13, 2020Final video presentations due
  6. December 19, 2020Awards ceremony
  7. To Be Determined (most likely Summer of 2021)The prize – week-long immersive experience
Employee participation

Employees from IBM and our partners are eligible to participate in judging, providing technical advisory, design workshop facilitation, and other activities. Please use the link below to register your interest in helping with the southeast Michigan EdTech Youth Challenge.

Register to assist in the southeast Michigan competition →

Rules & regulations

Rules & regulations →