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Future City starts with a question—how can we make the world a better place? To answer it, 6th, 7th, and 8th-grade students imagine, research, design, and build cities of the future that showcase their solution to a citywide sustainability issue. Past topics include stormwater management, urban agriculture, public spaces, and green energy. The 2021-2022 theme is A Waste-Free Future. Teams will design a waste-free city using the principles of a circular economy.

Participants complete five deliverables: a 1,500-word city essay; a scale model (or multiple model segments) built from recycled materials; a project plan, a presentation video, and a Q& session with judges. Regional winners represent their region at the International Finals. After completing Future City, student participants are not only prepared to be citizens of today’s complex and technical world but also poised to become the drivers of tomorrow.

Details on whether some elements of the competition will be taking place in person this season will be announced later in the year.

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Engineering and much more

This flexible, cross-curricular educational program gives students an opportunity to do the things that engineers do—identify problems; brainstorm ideas; design solutions; test, retest and build; and share their results. This process is called the engineering design process. With this at its center, Future City is an engaging way to build students’ 21st-century skills. Students participating in Future City:

Apply math and science concepts to real-world issues

  • Develop writing, public speaking, problem-solving, and time management skills
  • Research and propose solutions to engineering challenges
  • Discover different types of engineering and explore careers options
  • Learn how their communities work and become better citizens
  • Develop strong time management and project management skills
  • Award Recognition

Future City is one of the nation’s leading engineering education programs and has received national recognition and acclaim for its role in encouraging middle schoolers to develop their interest in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).

Visit Future City

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