About the Challenge

The Nittany AI Challenge represents an unparalleled opportunity for teams of undergraduate Penn State students to gain hands-on experience with AI technologies while learning from leading AI experts. It’s a great way to develop your entrepreneurial ideas, build your résumé, explore a capstone project, and practice valuable soft skills including leadership, collaboration, and communication.

How the Challenge works

You and a team of other undergraduate students will work together on an AI–related solution. We can help you recruit members for your project team, or you can join a team that has already been formed. A faculty advisor will mentor your team as you develop your solution.

Why should you compete?

Expand your education beyond classroom learning
Build on your foundational classroom learning and explore opportunities for a unique capstone project.

Work with leading AI platforms and companies
Gain invaluable real-world experience working with cutting-edge AI platforms and take advantage of free training resources from industry leaders.

Secure funding for your AI–focused startup
Compete against teams of entrepreneurs through three rounds of judging, receiving funding along the way to refine and develop your AI solution.

Make a lasting impact at Penn State
Work side-by-side with faculty, staff, and students to create scalable AI–based solutions to help Penn State address operational challenges.

The Challenge is divided into three phases:

Idea Phase (phase one) — Teams submit a short proposal describing both the challenge they intend to address and the AI technology they will leverage in the creation of their solution.

Prototype Phase (phase two) — Teams selected to advance will have the opportunity to demonstrate a functioning prototype of their AI solution.

MVP Phase (phase three) — Finalists will submit minimum viable products (MVP) for judging and awarding of seed money for additional development.