Students Seek to Change the World with Technology at Imagine Cup 2011

Some of America’s top young minds are tackling the world’s most pressing problems through the use of technology at this year’s Imagine Cup.

The Imagine Cup is the world’s premier student technology competition that challenges students to build life-changing projects that can ultimately transform the world. Microsoft created the competition nine years ago as a way to highlight and recognize student innovation around the globe, as well as inspire more young minds to study technology. Each year, the projects have become more inspirational and impactful. Students who participate gain real-world skills that help them in school, in their careers or even as they commercialize their projects, all while tackling global problems.

And those skills are sorely needed. In this feature on the Microsoft News Center, Microsoft Vice President of Developer and Platform Evangelism Mark Hindsbo said that projections show there will be about 1.2 million computer specialist jobs in the United States in 2018. Yet current trends show that the United States has only half the number of college graduates needed to fill those positions. Also, only about 15 percent of U.S. undergraduates are studying science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) compared to two or three times as many in countries such as India and China.

Winning the Imagine Cup isn’t easy. In this video, Next at Microsoft Blog Editor and Imagine Cup judge Steve Clayton talks about what it takes to succeed in the competition. To meet this year’s Imagine Cup participants, check out the competition’s Facebook page.

Posted by Jeff Meisner
Editor, The Official Microsoft Blog