Career Advancement

Past National Challenges

2014 National Public Policy Challenge

Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service, New York University, 2014 Finalist and Winning Team: Latch proposes a credentialing system and public awareness campaign to increase breastfeeding rates and duration in New York City. Read the team’s Executive Summary, their "Proposal and Presentation.

Evans School of Public Affairs, University of Washington, 2014 Semi-Finalist: Driving Affordability proposes an affordable pricing program to increase auto insurance coverage among low-income and high-risk drivers. Read the team’s Executive Summary, Proposal, and Presentation.

Fels Institute of Government, University of Pennsylvania, 2014 Finalist: BetterBAIL proposes an online bail payment system to save the Philadelphia Prison System and pre-trial defendants time and money. Read the team’s Executive Summary, their Proposal, and Presentation.

Harris School of Public Policy, University of Chicago, 2014 Semi-Finalist: Sight on Site proposes a school-based vision screening and glasses distribution program implemented by mobile teams of eye professionals and caseworkers. Read the team’s Executive Summary, their Proposal, and Presentation.

Humphrey School of Public Affairs, University of Minnesota, 2014 Semi-Finalist: Penn Avenue Equity Initiative proposes an equitable development framework to guide plans for and investment in the Penn Avenue corridor in Northern Minneapolis. Read the team’s Executive Summary, their Proposal, and Presentation.

Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs, University of Texas at Austin, 2014 Semi-Finalist: CivicSourcing proposes a framework and online platform designed to encourage citizens to become more involved and participate in their community’s local initiatives. Read the team’s Executive Summary, their Proposal, and Presentation.

McCourt School of Public Policy, Georgetown University, 2014 Semi-Finalist: VidaSano proposes a website that facilitates a heart disease preventative care program for Latino and Spanish-speaking patients in order to decrease hospital re-admissions. Read the team’s Executive Summary, their Proposal, and Presentation.

Price School of Public Policy, University of Southern California, 2014 Finalist: LASaves proposes a web-based technology platform to engage consumers in water conservation and drought mitigation efforts. Read the team’s Executive Summary, their Proposal, their Presentation, and a blog post outlining their efforts after the Challenge.

School of Public and International Affairs, University of Georgia, 2014 Finalist: Pack to Plate proposes a program to distribute fresh food to food-insecure children over the weekends and the summertime. Read the team’s Executive Summary, their Proposal, and Presentation.

School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University, 2014 Semi-Finalist: MobileYouth proposes a strategy to provide service-equipped cell phones to homeless youth in order to increase their access to social services and support networks. Read the team’s Executive Summary, their Proposal, and Presentation.

Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University: OverWatch proposes an open-source technology platform designed to connect veterans with local social service providers. Read the team’s Executive Summary.

2013 National Public Policy Challenge

re:Mind (Fels Institute of Government, University of Pennsylvania), 2013 Winning Team: Creating an appointment reminder service targeting individuals discharged from inpatient mental health hospitalizations in order to decrease preventable re-hospitalizations and other undesirable outcomes that occur when patients miss their follow-up appointments. re:Mind won both the Penn Finals and the National Finals, earning $25,000 to kick-start their proposal. Read the team's Meet-the-Team Blog Post, Executive Summary, and Proposal. Watch the team's Penn Challenge Finals Presentation and National Challenge Finals Presentation. The team's win was covered by Governing Magazine and Newsworks.

CluedIn (Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service, New York University), 2013 Finalist: CluedIn proposes a website providing user-friendly access to an interactive and comprehensive database of afterschool programs. CluedIn won $5,000 to help them implement their policy proposal. Read the team's Executive Summary and Proposal. Watch the team's National Challenge Finals Presentation.

Home Energy Efficiency Services Agreement (Harris School of Public Policy, University of Chicago), 2013 Finalist: HESA proposes contracts to help homeowners afford energy efficient retrofits of their homes. HESA won $5,000 to help them implement their policy proposal. Watch the team's National Challenge Finals Presentation.

PATCH (School of Public and International Affairs, University of Georgia), 2013 Finalist: PATCH proposes an online networking site to connect charitable organizations. PATCH won $5,000 to help them implement their policy proposal. Read the team's Executive Summary, Powerpoint, and Proposal. Watch the team's National Challenge Finals Presentation.

Aim Higher (Heinz College, Carnegie Mellon University), 2013 Semi-Finalist: Aim Higher proposes comprehensive, online GED-training. Read the team's Executive Summary, Powerpoint, and Proposal.

Policy in Motion (Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs, University of Texas at Austin), 2013 Semi-Finalist: Policy in Motion proposes a mobile application displaying real-time information on transportation alternatives. Read the team's Executive Summary, Powerpoint, and Proposal.

ReliefMap (School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University), 2013 Semi-Finalist: ReliefMap proposes a mapping platform to assist disaster relief organizations during crises. Read the team's Executive Summary, Powerpoint, and Proposal.

Service-Teaching United (Georgetown Public Policy Institute, Georgetown University), 2013 Semi-Finalist: STU proposes a partnership model between universities and public schools. Read the team's Executive Summary, Powerpoint, and Proposal.

Socially Active Volunteer Youth (Evans School of Public Affairs, University of Washington), 2013 Semi-Finalist: Proposing a program to encourage community service among youth. Read the team's Executive Summary and Proposal.

2012 National Public Policy Challenge

Kinvolved (Robert F. Wagner, New York University), 2012 Nationals Winning Team: The Kinvolved mobile app will empower caregivers of students in the New York City Department of Education with timely student attendance information to ensure that all children are present in school all day, every day. Read the team's Executive Summary and Proposal. Learn more about Kinvolved on their website.

Closing Schools, Opening Opportunities (Fels Institute of Government, University of Pennsylvania), 2012 Finalist: An innovative proposal for the redevelopment of closed, vacant public school buildings in Philadelphia. This new program would add value to vacant schools that will not sell as-is, transforming a potentially blighting influence into a catalyst for greater development. Read the team's Meet-the-Team Blog Post, One-Page Summary, Powerpoint, and Proposal. The team's win was covered by Flying Kite, Governing Magazine, Keystone Edge, Newsworks and The Philadelphia Inquirer.

Eco-Drive Chicago (Harris School of Public Policy, University of Chicago), 2012 Finalist: Plan to implement an eco-driving program for all drivers of non-revenue municipal fleet vehicles. Eco-driving is a system of relatively simple alterations to individual driving habits and vehicle maintenance routines that can reduce fuel consumption 15% - 20%. Read the team's Executive Summary, Powerpoint, and Proposal.

Three Rivers Bike Share (Heinz College, Carnegie Mellon University), 2012 Finalist: Non-profit organization that will implement a bike sharing system in Pittsburgh. Read the team's Executive Summary, Powerpoint, and Proposal.

Washington Biogas and Renewable Energy Coalition (Evans School of Public Affairs, University of Washington), 2012 Finalist: A model to use organic waste to generate biogas. Read the team's Executive Summary, Powerpoint, and Proposal.

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Contact Information

Fels Institute of Government
University of Pennsylvania
3814 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104

Phone: (215) 898-2600
Fax: (215) 746-2829

felsinstitute@sas.upenn.edu