Lemelson-MIT Student Prize

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Lemelson-MIT Student Prize

Applications are open for the Lemelson-MIT Student Prize is currently open. The teams of undergraduate students and individual graduate students who have technology-based inventions in categories that represent significant sectors of the economy are eligible for the program.

The program is mainly conducted to honor promising collegiate inventors around the country.  The talented and innovative students will be rewarded with enormous funds that are to use for their further educational expenses such as tuition, fees, books, or any other relevant to their studies.

The Lemelson-MIT Program works to reward several prizes yearly to inventors in the United States. The largest is the Lemelson–MIT Prize which was endowed in 1994 by Jerome H. Lemelson, funded by The Lemelson Foundation, and is administered through the School of Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Who May Eligible?

Interested candidates must be following the eligibility criteria given below:

  • Candidates must be a full-time, matriculated, degree-seeking student in the fall semester of 2020 at any U.S. college or university.
  • Postdocs, audit students, and alumni are ineligible.

Students apply to the competition as one of the following two options:

  • An undergraduate team composed of 2-5 members that are founded and led by an undergraduate student. Teams must have a tested prototype of one invention that fits into one of the four prize categories. Graduate students can also be a part of the undergraduate group, provided there is a majority of undergraduate team members.
  • An individual graduate student with at least two inventions with tested prototypes. Graduate students must choose an original design from their portfolio and apply it to the prize category that best fits their primary invention. Their second and any additional inventions do not need to be in the same category as the primary invention. There is no graduate student team prize.

How to Apply

Eligible students can enter electronically through an online application form. Students are asked to provide the mentioned documents to get consideration for prizes.

Supporting Documents

  • Resume or CV (PDF upload)
  • A Slide Deck Presentation (5-slide PowerPoint or PDF presentation upload explaining the invention, which must include visual evidence of a tested prototype.
  • Cover Letter of maximum 9,000 characters/approx. 1,500 words for undergraduate teams and 6,000 characters/approx. 1,000 words for individual graduate students
  • Description of Inventiveness including single invention for undergraduate teams – maximum 6,000 characters/approx. 1,000 words; a portfolio of two or more inventions for individual graduate students – maximum 12,000 characters/approx. 2,000 words)
  • Description of Potential Commercialization or Adoption of a maximum of 3,000 characters/approx. 500 words
  • Description of Systems & Design Thinking of a maximum of 1,800 characters/about 300 words for undergraduate teams and 3,000 characters/approx. 500 words for individual graduate students)
  • A description of Youth Mentoring and Leadership Experience of a maximum of 3,000 characters/approx. 500 words


The deserving winners of the competition will receive cash prizes as below:

  • $15,000 to the winning graduate student in each of the prize categories
  • $10,000 to the winning undergraduate team in each of the prize categories
  • National media campaign and exposure to investment and business communities
  • A paid trip to an award celebration in June 2021

Application Deadline

The application deadline is September 25, 2020, at 11:59 pm ET for the program.

Apply Now

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