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Meet the Finalists for the 2023 Wilkes Center Student Innovation Prize

Our Call to Action

Tackling climate change is one of the defining issues of the 21st century. Climate solutions hold immense potential to drive a sustainable, prosperous, and equitable future for people and communities in the US and around the globe. We conceive of climate solutions broadly, including entrepreneurial and technological innovations as well as new policies and programs. Universities can serve as incubators for climate solutions and foster student innovation around scalable, timely, and impactful solutions.

The Wilkes Center for Climate Science & Policy invited students at the University of Utah to submit their most innovative, creative, and bold ideas for tackling climate change in our inaugural Student Innovation Prize. Prizes submissions should detail the scalable and innovative impact for mitigating climate change, feasibility, and potential for co-benefits to people and/or ecosystems (see below for details on selection criteria).


  • $40,000 of prizes ($20K first prize, $10K second prize, two $5K Third prizes)
  • Open to all University of Utah students (undergraduate & graduate students)
  • Submission:
    • 4-5 page (single spaced, minimum font size 12 and 1” margins. Figures should be inline with the text, and are considered part of the page limit while the bibliography is not part of the page limit).
    • Innovative climate solutions pitches by individuals or teams (maximum of 5 people per team).
    • Submissions should address all three criteria of scalable impact, feasibility, and other benefits and include a section on background and expertise of team members. If relevant for the solution, the submission may include a short business plan.
  • DUE at the end of Earth Week at 5 PM MDT on Friday, April 21st.
  • Winners will be announced and required to present at the Wilkes Summit at the University of Utah on the morning of May 17th
  • Questions: Contact Ross Chambless (ross.chambless@utah.edu)