Manufacturing Innovation Challenge

Manufacturing Innovation Challenge Keys to Success

Provide a real-world research project for classes of middle and high school students, who will tackle the work in the classroom to develop a solution, and then present their results.

The Manufacturing Innovation Challenge (formerly Adventures in Technology) program brings together the brightest minds of tomorrow’s workforce with Southwestern Pennsylvania companies to engage in hands-on improvement projects. This provides a fulfilling learning experience to the high school and technical students and the company also receives value from the program in the following ways:

  • Fresh Perspectives and Ideas – Free of preconceived notions and ingrained workplace practices, student teams often generate innovative ideas that can help companies find new ways to tackle difficult manufacturing or technology challenges.
  • Time and Cost Savings – Every company has issues/opportunities that need to be investigated; now time can be made to address them without taking the time of current staff or the expense of hiring new employees.
  • Community Support – Companies are partnered with a local high school. This is a great opportunity for companies to support local schools and build an important relationship within the community.
  • Talent Recruitment – Company managers will build a future pipeline of the some of the strongest talent in the region. This can often lead to future internships and employment opportunities beyond the project.

Businesses in the manufacturing, information technology, biotechnology, and other technology industries have participated in the Manufacturing Innovation Challenge program. Since the program began back in 2002, more than 2,400 students from 60 high schools and technical schools worked in teams supervised by mentors at more than 60 companies. As the students are immersed into the issues of the business world, they learn that southwestern Pennsylvania offers attractive career opportunities after they graduate.


Contact Us

For more information on the Manufacturing Innovation Challenge program, contact Scott Dietz at


Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation