As part of the SHAD program in July, you’ll be presented with a problem that has both economic and social implications, and you’ll devise an original product or service to solve it.


Each year the theme or challenge changes.  Past themes have been related to health, wellness, safety, food security, and the environment.


You’ll learn about the national theme when it’s unveiled during the first week of the SHAD program each July.


Many SHAD participants find this a unique and unforgettable part of the program.  You get a chance to take part in experiential learning that teaches all about the innovation process and what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur.  Teams of participants collaborate, innovate and create a product or service by applying scientific principles, engineering a prototype, and developing business and marketing plans.  


You might or might not consider yourself an entrepreneur.  But the startup experience provided by the SHAD design engineering challenge leads to a path of innovation for many SHADs. Close to 20% of SHAD alumni have launched at least one startup, with 60% of SHAD Fellow startups focused on Information and Communications Technology (ICT), digital media, clean tech, life sciences, and engineering. SHAD may fuel your entrepreneurial and innovation capacities too!