Saint-Gobain Student Design Competition

Do you have an idea that could solve a problem in society? Do you want a chance to win $9,000 while working with a team of colleagues and mentors, and gaining recognition from industry leaders, Case Western Reserve faculty and the Cleveland community? Enter the Saint-Gobain student design challenge:

Design and build a prototype device that takes an existing material and, using principles of materials science and engineering, creates a new and innovative use for it that solves a problem for society. 

In the Saint-Gobain Student Design Competition, you’ll create a team of undergraduate and graduate students from any CWRU Engineering Departments, the Weatherhead School of Management Departments, the Physics and Chemistry Departments and the Cleveland Institute of Art to participate in this exciting student-led competition.

The Saint-Gobain competition offers you a unique opportunity to:

  • Network with students and faculty members with a wide range of talents in various disciplines to create a well-rounded prototype.
  • Experience the process of prototyping, design and device fabrication to leverage advanced or novel applications of materials research and design in a creative manner.
  • Build your résumé while receiving a chance to win prize money. Prize money is awarded to first and second place teams in the semi-finals and to first, second, and third place teams in the finals.
  • Gain recognition from Case Western Reserve faculty and staff, Saint-Gobain, potential employers, and local media for your prototype device.


Review the Full Competition Rules


2017 Competition Schedule

Friday, December 8th: Application to participate due by 11:59 p.m.

January 22nd - 28th: Teams are required to meet with James Pae to report on progress and provide team updates

Thursday, February 22nd: Competition Semi-Finals, 6-9 pm, Tinkham Veale Ballroom C

Monday, March 12th: Students schedule time to meet with mentors

Monday, April 16th: Competition Finals, 6-9 pm, Tinkham Veale Ballroom C

May 2018: Winning team travels to Saint-Gobain's Northboro Research Center in Boston, MA

All teams selected to continue in the competition will be able to receive up to $500 in funding for their prototype. Funding will be in the form of reimbursement – all expenditures must have receipts or invoices and must be submitted within 2 weeks after the finals to be eligible for reimbursement. Exceptions for advance payments can be made with prior approval.


Design Competition Contact

For any questions, please contact:

James Pae
Office of Corporate Relations
Nord 620


Who is Saint-Gobain?

Saint-Gobain is the oldest and one of France’s leading corporations with activities in over 57 countries, more than 200,000 employees, and sales of approximately 44 billion euros. The company’s roots are in flat glass manufacturing and cast iron piping. Today, the company has activities in five major areas: Flat glass; high performance materials; construction products; and building distribution and packaging. In North America, Saint-Gobain has grown by smart acquisitions and generally continues to market products under the names of the acquired companies such as Certainteed® and Norton®. Saint-Gobain’s mission is worldwide leadership in construction markets offering innovative solutions to meet the fundamental global challenges of growth, energy and the environment.