Tuesday, January 05, 2010

High School Students Competing Against University Students

I’ve been saying for some time that the overlap between high end high school students and low end university students is greater than many people realize. When the Imagine Cup kicked off back in September I suggested that high school students (16 and older) might want to take a look at competing especially in the game competition. Sure the competition is tough but what is difficult is often the best way to push ones self further. XNA is a great platform and can be very approachable for high school students. Well it looks from this announcement of fall results from the US Imagine Cup (you can find the full list of finalists at the official US IC press announcement) that at least one high school took me up on my challenge.

To win a trip to the U.S. finals, teams are selected as finalists in fall and spring competitions. Yesterday, Microsoft announced the finalists for the fall competition, who will vie for the nation’s Imagine Cup title. Student teams that competed in the fall competition but did not make it to the finals are encouraged to work on their projects and enter them in the spring competition. Contests are conducted in several categories including Software Design, Game Design and Web Design.

The fall finalists include Red Team, Springbrook High School, Maryland. Project: An educational game devoted to physics puzzles.

Students in the U.S. can register and learn more about the event at http://www.imaginecup.us. Students who sign up before the deadline of Feb. 1 may enter for a chance to win the “$10,000 (U.S.) Cash for Students” sweepstakes.

More information about the Imagine Cup and registration details for students outside the U.S. are available at http://www.imaginecup.com. More information on the United Nations Millennium Development Goals can be found at http://www.un.org/millenniumgoals. Up-to-date developments on the finals competition will be available at the official Imagine Cup Blog.


This is not the first time Springbrook High School has come to my attention BTW. They’ve been trying XNA for a while now. I mentioned them in my blog a year and a half ago (Bootstrapping XNA into High School Computer Science) because they had a video of one of there project games on the school web site. Well there are many more XNA curriculum materials available now. And as is noted above there is still time to sign up for and enter the spring competition. Can your high school keep up with Springbrook HS?

How about one of the other competitions? Software design or web development maybe? The full list of US Imagine Cup competitions is here. Not in the US? No problem. The International Imagine Cup web site is here.


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