The Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) online building energy-efficiency competition, JUMP into STEM, kicks off the 2019–2020 season with three concurrent challenges running from August 12 to November 15, 2019. Building science experts from Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) and National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) will provide three webinars to help guide students through the inventive and developmental stages of bringing their ideas to life.
JUMP into STEM is a competition for undergraduate and graduate students at U.S. colleges and universities that aims to attract innovative students from a variety of majors to the building science research profession. Seeking to inspire the next generation of building scientists, the program focuses on creative ideation and diversity in the field. The diversity objective is inclusive of an interdisciplinary mix of majors and representation by women and minorities. A wide range of student disciplines can participate in JUMP, including computer science, data science, statistics, mathematics, physics, economics, sociology, meteorology, architecture, and various engineering disciplines in addition to the traditional building professional degrees of civil and mechanical engineering.
This year’s JUMP into STEM competition promotes a more interdisciplinary approach by requiring students to compete on teams of two to five people with at least two different majors. The program will accept ideas from student teams enrolled at any U.S. college or university. A team of professors from universities across the country are incorporating JUMP into STEM into their fall curricula, including Clark Atlanta University, the Colorado School of Mines, Georgia Institute of Technology, Hampton University, North Carolina A&T State University, Southern University and A&M College, the University of Alabama, and the University of Tennessee.
Last season, JUMP into STEM awarded three paid internships at ORNL and NREL to challenge winners in the Open “What if. . .” Challenge. The winners completed summer internships working with building technologies at the national laboratories, and completed projects in building energy modeling, phase change materials, and analysis software for commercial buildings. Finalists from the three 2019–2020 challenges will compete at the finals event to be held at NREL January 31, 2020. Winners will receive summer 2020 paid internships at ORNL or NREL.
JUMP into STEM is co-led by ORNL and NREL with support from DOE’s Building Technologies Office.