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USAID International Development Challenge

To register for this event, please download the application and email Hanna Sparrow at or

Coordinator: Hanna Sparrow


Registration Deadline: Monday, March 11th, 2024 - 10:30AM.



​The United States Agency for International Development (USAID), a leading global development agency, needs your innovative ideas to address a significant challenge. The opportunity to contribute to solving a real-world global issue awaits participants in the Case Competition during the 2024 American Indian Higher Education Consortium Student Conference from March 9th-12th. The top three teams will be awarded cash prizes of $15,000, $10,000, and $5,000. Additionally, all participants will have the chance to receive mentorship and advice from USAID professionals regarding potential careers in development.


Competition Overview

USAID International Development Challenge Objective:

  • USAID invites innovative ideas and solutions on how to increase engagement, interest, and understanding of international development and USAID’s mission among Tribal College and University (TCU) students.

USAID International Development Challenge Rules:

  1. The USAID International Development Challenge is a team event that requires innovative thinking to solve a real-world problem and can be presented to judges in the media of the students choosing.

  2. The problem presented to the teams is one created by USAID specifically for the challenge.

  3. Teams will craft creative solutions to the problem, using research as needed to support their solution.

  4. Presentations will be judged according to several criteria laid out in the judging rubric below.

  5. Each team will consist of two (2) to five (5) members. Team members may be from the same school or different schools.

  6. All team members shall be present at the time of their presentation, and each team member must communicate as part of the pitch.

  7. Competitors may only serve on one team at a time – you may not enter multiple times via multiple teams.

  8. Each presentation shall be twenty (20) minutes or less followed by up to a ten (10) minute question and answer session at the conclusion of the presentation.

  9. Team members and spectators shall conduct themselves in an appropriate manner. Spectators are not allowed to communicate in any way with the teams once the presentations begin. Any intentional or unintentional outside communication with or by a team will result in the disqualification of the entire team from the competition. A team is disqualified if the team’s mentor/coach signals to their team(s) during the competition.

  10. A lectern will be provided for presentations. Standing behind the lectern can add formality to the presenter’s presentation. Moving out from behind the lectern can establish a friendlier relationship with the presenter’s audience. Both of these styles are acceptable.

  11. Teams can use any type of audiovisual, visual, or other aids to support their presentation. A screen, projector, whiteboard, easel, podium, and flip chart will be available for use as needed. Each team will be responsible for providing any additional equipment they deem necessary.

  12. Team awards for first (1st), second (2nd), and third (3rd) place will be awarded during the student banquet.

  13. Professional attire is recommended, but there is no preference between traditional or business attire, and the competitors should make the decision on which would be most appropriate.  Hoodies, baseball caps, unnecessarily oversized clothing, etc. which do not convey a message of professionalism, reverence for the topic, or respect for the judging panel could detract from your presentation.

  14. Judgment will begin when the competitors enter the room and will continue through presentations until the time the team leaves the competition room.

  15. Prize money will be divided evenly between the members of the winning teams.

  16. Developed solutions, photos, and content created by the teams will not be used outside of the competition without prior approval by the students/schools.

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