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Congratulations to the team to Team Eagle / Project Eagle Rescue by Kaitlin Asch, Nyah Lovick, and Neeko Phelps &  Mentor: Ravi Brahmbhatt for being selected as 1 of 12 National finalists for CCIC 2023!!


Congratulations, Teams, You are invited to the local round on March 24th, starting at 3pm!

TEAM Names/Order of presentation as preferred by student leads.

  1. STEM EAGLES (3:00 PM) by Darrell Setiawan & Team (Mentor: Sujit Mondal)
    1. Summary: Our idea is the incorporation of a binary power generation system to charge the battery of electric cars. This is needed in order for electric cars to be used for long distance travel or to be used in places without many charging stations. With this innovation, people will be able to own electric cars without worrying about the hindrances of their circumstances. Also, the incorporation of our concept will lower the barriers for electric vehicles to be introduced in third world countries.
  2. ORGANIC FLOW (3:20 PM) by Annie Carbazal & Team (Mentor: Sujit Mondal)
    1. Our idea, flow battery, or redox flow battery (the major fuel source undergoes reduction–oxidation), is based on the fundamentals of an electrochemical device that functions as a fuel cell and also like an electrochemical cell. This is extremely important since a flow battery removes the need of charging a secondary device as well as provides a more environmentally friendly option. Moreover, this innovation helps the environment by reusing the same fuel source (through reduction-oxidation reactions) avoiding potential excess waste and harmful products.
  1. Transportation: A Blue Bus (3:40 PM) by Jalecia Henderson & Team (Mentor: Jordan Carswell)
    1. Summary: Single parents face numerous challenges when it comes to accessing essential services and transportation in cities like Houston. The lack of accessible and affordable transportation options creates barriers for these families, hindering their ability to access employment, education, and healthcare. This issue is in direct opposition to the United Nations' Global Goals of promoting sustainable cities and communities, reducing inequalities, and ensuring access to quality education and healthcare.
  1. Protection Particles Husk (4:00 PM) by Prince Egwim & Team (Mentor: Nicholas Boland)
    1. Summary: Public safety has been diminishing throughout the years due to pandemics, social riots, school shootings, and many more. It is important to increase public safety because it keeps everyone safe. Some features to my solution are that my invention can be easily accessible and at an affordable price in many department stores. My invention is also non-lethal so there will be no caution for injuries and fatal occurrences.
  1. World Bank Zero Gas Flaring by 2030 Initiative (4:20 PM) by Mariia Nazarova & team (Mentor: Abiodun Olowe)
    1. Summary: Gas flaring is prevalent on oil rigs, refineries, chemical facilities, and coal plants during production or industrial activity. We are proposing two solutions, one for low scale associated gas production and the other for large scale production. This project is intended to provide alternative solutions to gas flaring and therefore reduce or eliminate the following impacts.
  2. Team Eagle / Project Eagle Rescue (4:40 PM) by Kaitlin Asch & Team (Mentor: Ravi Brahmbhatt)
    1. Summary: When rescuing victims firefighters are in buildings that have a high chance of structure failure and low visibility due to smoke. They primarily rely on their hands and feet to find victims. Our solution is a sensor array that is seamlessly integrated into every firefighters gear. This integration means that our device is hands free and its personalized nature allows each individual firefighter to see collapsed structures and identify victims among the rubble.


Local Round Process:

  • Each Team will be invited in the order of time preference they selected at the time of submission (as listed above)
  • Team mentor is asked to introduce the team lead and members.
  • Team’s 90 Second - Video will be shown first.
  • Team’s up to 5-minute Presentation: Show any prototypes/posters/PowerPoint/“show and tell” pitch presentation.
  • Judges will have up to 5 minutes of Q and A on the project.
  • Up to a 5-minute scoring breaking & transition to the next team

Local Round Rubric:

  • Project Video (10%)
  • Innovation and Impact (30%)
  • Feasibility (30%)
  • Clarity of Communication (30%)







First, to get involved in this program, please indicate whether you are a student or faculty member by selecting the appropriate intent to participate button during the registration process.  Then, please choose which information sessions you will attend; they are available in person or virtually on the dates. Click here to Register now


  • 2/14 - HCC West Houston Insititute Collaboratorium - 3 pm to 4 pm* (Register)
  • 2/14 - HCC Central Campus - SJC 112 - 6 pm to 7 pm* (Register)
  • 2/22 - HCC West Houston Insititute Collaboratorium - 3 pm to 4 pm* (Register)
  • 2/22 - HCC Central Campus - SJC 112 - 6 pm to 7 pm* (Register)


  • 3/2 - Design for Good by Jordan Carswell - WHI - Collaboratorium) - 3 pm to 4 pm (Register)
  • 3/6 - STEM Innovation by Jeff Stear - WHI - Collaboratorium) - 3 pm to 4 pm (Register)
  • 3/8 - Business Model Canvas by Ravi Brahmbhatt - Central Campus SJC 112 - 4 pm to 6 pm (Register)

* Virtual/Hybrid sign-up is available as well.



The Community College Innovation Challenge (CCIC) is led by the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) in partnership with the National Science Foundation (NSF). It is a national competition where community college student teams, working with a supportive faculty or administrator mentor, use science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) to innovate solutions to real-world problems; earn full travel support to attend an Innovation Boot Camp in the Washington, D.C. metro area; and compete for cash awards. The Innovation Boot Camp provides professional development, mentoring, and coaching designed to build strategic communication and entrepreneurial skills to help students advance their innovations in both the private and public sectors. Students participate in sessions on commercializing ideas, using technology for social applications, communicating with stakeholders, refining a pitch, and more. The Innovation Boot Camp culminates in a poster session, engagement opportunity with STEM leaders and Congressional stakeholders, and a pitch presentation in front of a panel of esteemed industry and entrepreneurial professionals to determine the first, second, and third-place winning teams.


The national CCIC is designed to enable community college students to discover and demonstrate their capacity to use STEM to make a difference in the world. It provides a venue to strengthen and further develop STEM thinking, apply it to solving real-world problems, and to build the skills necessary to carry invention from idea to society-benefitting innovation. Through the Innovation Boot Camp, finalist teams have the opportunity to interact with entrepreneurs, experts, and industry professionals in business planning, stakeholder engagement, communication, and marketplace dynamics; gain life-changing business acumen and communication skills; and engage with other community college innovators to make significant connections and to share ideas. Finalist teams showcase their projects and colleges on a national stage through a poster session and compete in a pitch presentation at the end of the Innovation Boot Camp. The Boot Camp provides a friendly and constructive environment to hone innovation while gaining entrepreneurial skills and competing for cash awards.



AACC and NSF provide:

  • A plaque for all finalist schools;
  • Recognition certificates from NSF and AACC for each finalist team member;
  • Full travel support for all finalist team members to attend the Innovation Boot Camp in the Washington, D.C. metro area;
  • A $500 cash honorarium for all finalist student team members and faculty/administrator mentors for attending the Boot Camp;
  • Additional cash awards – awards are made to each first, second, and third place team member in the following amounts:
    • First place: $3,000
    • Second place: $2,000
    • Third place: $1,000

The Phases (Process)

CCIC Phase I – Developing Ideas, Inventions, and Innovations

  1. Assemble your Community College Team. Each team should consist of:
    • A community college faculty or administrator mentor
    • 2-4 community college students
      • Diverse and interdisciplinary teams that include students in STEM, business, humanities, and other fields are encouraged.
  2. Develop breakthrough ideas using STEM.
    • For the CCIC, student teams are asked to develop a STEM solution to a real-world problem of local to global concern.
    • Your team is required to:
      • Identify a problem of local to global concern that you seek to address with your STEM innovation.–Assess your innovation’s potential impact on society (such as on the economy, national security, global competitiveness, the environment, quality of life, etc.).    
      • Determine the scientific and market feasibility of the innovation, identifying any challenges and ways to potentially work through them.
      • Share ideas for how the innovation would be implemented in a real-world scenario. Start thinking of yourselves as entrepreneurs with a novel invention, creation, or product you want to bring to the marketplace.
      • Your team is not required to have already implemented your innovation.
  3. Apply to the CCIC with your STEM innovation by submitting a¡
    • Written entry; and a
    • 90-second video.
  4. Entries will be vetted by STEM innovation experts to select up to 12 finalist teams.
  5. The finalist teams will receive full travel support and are expected to attend the Innovation Boot Camp in Alexandria, VA taking place June 12-15, 2023.
  6. Finalist teams are also expected to prepare for the Innovation Boot Camp by participating in two orientation webinars and conducting 3-4 customer discovery interviews (as detailed in the orientation webinars) prior to participating in the event.
    • Welcome & Orientation to the Innovation Boot Camp May 2 from 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. EDT
    • The Customer Discovery Journey in STEM Innovation May 5 from 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. EDT 
    • Customer Discovery Exploration for Finalist Teams May 6 – June 11, 2023 (on teams’ own time)
  7. The finalist teams will compete at the Innovation Boot Camp through a poster session and a pitch presentation—with the first, second, and third place teams winning cash awards.


TIPS for a Pitch Outline:

  1. Introduction: Briefly introduce yourself, the idea, and its significance in the field.

  2. Problem statement: Explain the problem you are solving and why it matters.

  3. Solution: Outline the key features of your solution and how it is innovative.

  4. Market potential: Discuss the potential market size, target customers, and competition.

  5. Team: Introduce the key members of the team, their relevant expertise, and how they contribute.

  6. Progress to date: Discuss what you have accomplished and any relevant milestones.

  7. Plans: Outline your future plans, what you need to achieve your goals, and how you plan to scale your solution.

  8. Benefits and impact: Highlight the benefits and impact of your solution on society and the environment.

  9. Call to action: End with a clear call to action, asking for support, investment or collaboration



Houston Community College

Houston Community College - Alief Hayes Campus, Hayes Road, Houston, TX, USA

Hayes Road 2811 Collaboratorium
77082 Houston TX
United States

Related files


Guidebook & Resources

Download the Community College Innovation Challenge Guidebook (PDF)

Download Tips for Submitting a Winning Video (PDF)

How to Save a Zoom Recording as an MP4

Past CCIC Winners

The American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) held the 2022 CCIC as an in-person event and the 2021 CCIC as a virtual event and competition. Prior to 2021, the CCIC was held from 2015-2018 managed by the NSF in partnership with AACC.

Please see below for photos and articles from past events and to obtain ideas from the types of projects represented.

Press Releases

AACC, NSF Announce Winning Teams of 2022 Community College Innovation Challenge

AACC, NSF Announce 12 Student Teams to Advance to Community College Innovation Challenge Finals

2022 CCIC Press Release


Final pitches and the CCIC winners (6/16/2022)

In Photos: The CCIC Poster Showcase (6/16/2022)

Boot Camp Prepares Teams for Competition (6/13/2022)

In Photos: Opening Day of the Boot Camp (6/13/2022)

12 college teams named CCIC finalists (4/28/2022) 

MNT-EC Principal Investigator Is a Fan of the Community College Innovation Challenge (2/9/2022)

CCIC opens opportunities for participants (2/1/2022)

Thumbs up: Mentors recommend CCIC to colleagues (2/1/2022)

Fostering STEM innovations (6/18/2021)

Finalists selected for Community College Innovation Challenge (5/11/2021)

AACC Launches Community College Innovation Challenge (2/18/2021)

The Community College Innovation Challenge returns (2/17/2021)

Developing business acumen among STEM students (02/27/2020)

Diverse Issues in Higher Education Article (1/30/2020)

CCIC Photo Gallery

Article on the 2018 CCIC – Learning to Take a STEM Idea to Scale

Submission Videos from 2022 CCIC Finalist Teams

College: Bergen Community College, NJ
Project: ScanCan – The Intelligent Recycling Bin 

College: College of Central Florida, FL
Project: True Wireless ECG

College: Columbus State Community College. OH
Project: Columbus Kinesthetics’

College: Des Moines Area Community College, IL
Project: The Social Student 

College: Front Range Community College, CO
Project: The Orca Oil-Separating & Bio-Filtration Vessel

College: Linn-Benton Community College, OR
Project: The Portable Air Shield System

College: Middlesex Community College. MA
Project: STEM-finder

College: Ohlone College, CA
Project: Wave Riders

College: Polk State College, FL
Project: Osmotically Reversing the Effects of Microplastics

College: San Antonio College, TX
Project: Ocular Horizon

College: Santa Monica College, CA
Project: Team Antiviral

College: SUNY Orange, NY
Project: Solar Absorption Repository (SAR)

Submission Videos from 2021 CCIC Finalist Teams

College: Austin Community College, TX
Project:  OASIS – Officer Aptitude & Stress Information System

College: Bergen Community College, NJ
Project: Electric Vehicle Conversion Project

College: Borough of Manhattan Community College, NY
Project: Designing VR Application for Autistic Children

College: Columbus State Community College, OH
Project: Greenago – Turning Colleges Green

College: Henry Ford College, MI
Project: Maskkito: A Sleek Nano Cleanser Mask

College: Itawamaba Community College, MS
Project: Achelous 

College: Ivy Tech Community College of Indiana, IN
Project: ViruScan – The Pandemic Defender

College: Johnson County Community College, KS
Project: Increased Accessibility for Mobility Device Users

College: Nashua Community College, NH
Project: EnviroMask

College: Pasadena City College, CA
Project: The NanoBio mAB: A Nanoparticle-Antibody Cancer Therapeutic

College: Tarrant County College, TX
Project: In-Hive Mushroom Cultivator

College: Virginia Western Community College, VA
Project: Community Coral Project

Sample Submission Videos from 2015-2018 CCIC Finalist Teams

Forsyth Technical Community College, NC (2018)

Del Mar College, TX (2017)

Virginia Western Community College, VA (2016)

Indian River Community College, FL (2015)

Outreach Materials & Toolkit

Are you a student trying to recruit a team? Are you a faculty member, administrator, family member, or friend of a student who would be perfect for entering the CCIC? Do you attend a college who has a team or teams entering and want to help support your school? Below are some resources that may help you to get the word out.

Download CCIC Flyer (PDF)

Download CCIC Post Card (PDF)

Download Outreach Toolkit (PDF)

How to Enter

How to Enter

1. After confirming eligibility and reviewing this complete site, teams of 2-4 students and a faculty or administrator mentor partner to develop a breakthrough idea that addresses a real-world problem.  (Faculty Mentor, use this link to Enter Now)

2. Enter by clicking the Enter Now box above.

  • This link takes you to the Competition Entry Platform, which is a separate website.

  • Before you submit your entry, the whole team must register:

The team’s mentor must initially register their team and invite all team members to join. All team members must then join and provide the required personal information and upload any required forms. Any team member can then submit the team’s entry by the due date.

3. Develop a summary statement and a written entry that describes your innovation.

Summary Statement:  Provide a 500-character summary of your idea/project. The summary should be clear, concise, and written without technical jargon so people are able to understand what the project is, why it matters, and what impact it will have.

Written Entry: Provide a written entry that addresses each of the three sections detailed below. Please note that each section has a specified character limit, including spaces. The written entry should be developed by the student team members. It should not be written by the team’s faculty or administrator mentor.

  • The Problem. Clearly and succinctly define the problem of interest. Provide relevant background information and identify the context of the problem (i.e. who is affected, how long has the problem existed). Indicate why it is important that this problem be addressed. (1,600 characters)

  • The Solution. Describe your team’s innovative solution. What science and/or technology inform your solution? How is your solution innovative and different from other products/services intended to solve the same problem? What challenges or barriers must be overcome to make your solution a reality? (2,100 characters)

  • The Impact and Benefits. Describe how your team would measure the impact and benefits of your solution, if implemented. The societal impact of your innovation such as aiding national security, increasing U.S. global competitiveness, improving quality of life, expanding educational opportunities, etc., must be addressed. (1,600 characters)

4. Prepare a 90-second video entry.

  • The video entry should consist of a single, 90-second maximum video.

  • The video should clearly articulate the problem, the team’s proposed solution to the problem, and how the team’s solution is innovative and unique in addressing the problem.

  • The video entry should tell a compelling story and include methods and insights not provided in the written entry to create a novel presentation.

  • The video entry should deliver clear and understandable messages using nontechnical language.

  • Videos can be shot and edited by someone not on the team; however, the subject(s) of the video and its content must be created by team members.

  • Videos do not have to include credits, but if they do, these need to be included in the 90-second time limit.

  • If you use a phone to shoot a video, please be sure to shoot horizontally at all times.

  • Recording a team Zoom call for the 90-second video and converting it to an MP4 is an option for video submission.

  • When creating the video, a good best practice is to talk as if you are reiterating the question in your response. (Ex: “Our proposed solution to the problem is…” Or “Our team’s solution is innovative and different because….”)

  • Please see here for additional tips for developing successful videos.

5. Upload your video.

  • The video can be directly uploaded to the entry platform in any file type. Please maintain a maximum file size of 150 MB.

  • Please keep the following tips in mind when uploading:

  • Keep file name under 30 characters.

  • Do not include special characters in file names.

  • Once uploaded, your video will take some time to be rendered depending on size. This can take from 30 seconds to a few minutes or longer.

  • You will see a progress bar in this spot while your video is processed.

  • Your video will need to be successfully uploaded into the platform before you can submit your application. Please allow enough time prior to the competition deadline to upload your submission video.

6. Complete additional entry requirements by providing the following information:

  • College name and physical address.

  • Entry title (please do not use acronyms).

  • Suggested caption for video.

  • Suggested credit for video.

  • College Twitter account handle.

  • College public information or media officer’s contact information (name, email, and phone number).

  • Signed and uploaded “Certificate of Authenticity” form signed by the team’s mentor, which can be accessed on the entry platform.

7. Proposal Reviews

  • All entries and team members will be screened for compliance with the competition rules and eligibility requirements.

  • Each entry will be evaluated by a review panel of NSF, AACC, and community college experts based on the judging criteria that will equally weigh the following criteria when scoring Phase I entries:

  • Innovation and Impact: An assessment of the proposed solution’s use of STEM to address the problem; potential impact to be transformative in the areas of the economy, quality of life, global competitiveness, education, etc.; and how the proposed solution differs from existing efforts in its use of novel concepts, methods, and/or technology.

  • Feasibility: An assessment of the likelihood that the solution will work as presented and can be replicated; and an evaluation of the team’s recognition of potential barriers and suggestions for ways in which these barriers may be addressed.

  • Clarity of Communication: An assessment of the team’s compliance with all entry guidelines (written and video entries), including structure, organization of facts and data, and the inclusion of clear, consistent messaging.

8. Finalists Selections

  • Up to 12 of the highest-scoring entries will be selected for the final round of the competition.

  • Teams will be notified if they become finalists in late April 2023 with detailed instructions on preparing for the Innovation Boot Camp and must participate in two webinars to cover all Boot Camp logistics and required preparation. Please plan to attend the following two webinars:

  • The first webinar, “Community College Innovation Challenge: Welcome & Orientation to the Innovation Boot Camp”, will be held on Tuesday, May 2 from 1:00 – 2:00 pm EDT. This webinar will highlight expectations and agenda items for Boot Camp participation, discuss the poster session and pitch presentation, provide guidance on mentoring and coaching support, and offer the opportunity for attendees to ask questions of the CCIC organizers.

  • The second webinar, "The Customer Discovery Journey in STEM Innovation” will be held on Friday, May 5 from 1:00 - 2:00 p.m. EDT. This webinar will provide participants with an overview of the Customer Discovery process, a key element of Innovation Boot Camp training, and answers to the following questions relevant to developing STEM innovations: (a) What is a business model? (b) What are the 9 parts of a business model? (c) What are the hypotheses? and (d) What experiments are needed to test a business model hypothesis? In addition, CCIC finalist teams will be tasked with a Customer Discovery assignment to complete in advance of attending the Innovation Boot Camp.

  • The faculty mentor and student team members are required to attend the live webinars and/or view the webinar recordings if they are unable to attend the live events. AACC and NSF strongly encourage all team members to take part in the live webinars and/or view the recorded versions to ensure that teams are oriented to the Boot Camp, understand expectations for both Boot Camp participation and activities that need to be completed prior to participating, and have an opportunity to ask questions.

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