Serve as a Coach

Coaches are teachers, parents, home school leaders and afterschool program leaders who want to bring real-world context to their curriculum. 



"As a teacher that has been fortunate enough to have teams make it to the summit level of the competition over multiple years, I can say that the process has changed my approach to teaching.

 Most students are secretly 'itching' to try out their existing knowledge and skill sets on real problems, but rarely do us adults deem them capable or prepared enough to deal with existing real-world problems.

My advice to teachers is try it!  The time commitment is really not that large on your part.  Just advertise the challenge to all of your students.  Challenge them as a group and individually.

My experience is that the students will set standards higher for themselves than you ever would.  They will be creative, innovative, collaborative and work harder than they would for any grade or assignment you would require of them."

Roger Kassebaum
Coach, Milken Community High School

Conrad Challenege
09', 10', 11', 12'

About Our Coaches
The Spirit of Innovation Challenge is a dynamic way for teachers, parents and afterschool coordinators to provide context and depth to their curriculum. As adult participants in the Conrad Challenge, coaches receive access to peer mentors and worldwide experts who can provide unique perspectives of the industries they serve.

Why Coach a Team?

  • Help your students excel in comprehending STEM principles
  • Engage students by combining STEM principles with entrepreneurship to enhance classroom curriculum
  • Create an inter-disciplinary environment for learning through innovation, creativity and design
  • Provide a real-world context to curriculum
  • Incorporate leadership and team building into the classroom
  • Participate in an online community dedicated to STEM and innovation
  • Have FUN teaching and learning with your students

 A Coach’s Responsibility

  • Help your students create or join a team
  • Facilitate and encourage your students to discuss their ideas with mentors in the online community
  • Help ensure your students have completed all submission requirements
  • Serve as the supervisor for the team by assisting with travel arrangements and handling any granted funds should they make it to the finals
  • Complete the official forms required for the competition if selected as a finalist or beyond
  • If selected as a finalist, serve as chaperone for your team at the Innovation Summit

Time Commitment
Time commitments are flexible to your situation and the complexity of your team’s project. We recommend the following guidelines when planning your schedule:

  • A minimum of 1 hour/week to guide your team through the abstract entry submission
  • If selected as a semi-finalist, your commitment will most likely increase to 2-4 hours/week to support the team in submitting a business plan, technical plan and graphic representation
  • If selected as a finalist, we ask your commitment to attend the Innovation Summit and support the team's connection with mentors; a minimum of 1 hour/week between February and April can be expected