Categories & Prizes

Prize Categories

Applicants submit their inventions in categories that represent significant sectors of the economy that could be reimagined and improved through invention.

 

The "Cure it!" Lemelson-MIT Student Prize
“Cure it!” rewards students working on technology-based inventions that involve healthcare.
Eat it prize category
The "Eat it!" Lemelson-MIT Student Prize
"Eat it!" rewards students working on technology-based inventions that involve food/water or agriculture.
The "Move it!" Lemelson-MIT Student Prize
"Move it!" rewards students working on technology-based inventions that involve transportation or mobility.
The "Use it!" Lemelson-MIT Student Prize
"Use it!" rewards students working on technology-based inventions that involve consumer devices or products.
Winners receive:
$15K to the winning graduate student in each prize category.
$10K to the winning undergraduate team in each category.
National media campaign and exposure to investment and business communities.
A paid trip to an awards celebration. 

Current Winners

Harvard University graduate student Nicole Black in the lab, in front of a computer monitor that is displaying a picture of her invention being 3D printed. She also holds her small, biodegradable eardrum graft invention in tweezers.
Lemelson-MIT Student Prize

Nicole Black

Nicole invented PhonoGraft, a new material and procedure to repair eardrums after damage due to infection or trauma such as blast injury.
Stanford University graduate student Mira Moufarrej in the lab
Lemelson-MIT Student Prize

Mira Moufarrej

Mira invented early screening tests that may change the standard of practice for prenatal care by predicting preeclampsia, preterm birth, and due date earlier and more accurately.
MIT graduate student Hilary Johnson, holding her variable volute pump
Lemelson-MIT Student Prize

Hilary Johnson

Hilary invented an adaptive centrifugal pump that expands or contracts the volute in response to variable flow rates for better energy efficiency.
Paige Balcom of University of California, Berkeley with a wall tile made from her machines that convert PET plastic into useable, salable items.
Lemelson-MIT Student Prize

Paige Balcom

Paige invented locally-made, manually-powered recycling machines to transform PET plastic waste into desirable household products in Uganda.

Testimonial

"One of the biggest barriers in STEM is the gender gap and women feel shy – society has put them down so much – and don’t speak out. I just want to give girls encouragement and tell them not to be afraid."

Kayla Nguyen
2017 Lemelson-MIT Student Prize winner