2020 Design Challenge Finalists

Twenty teams placed in the six competitions over the summer. Ten moved on to the finals in September for a $5000 grand prize and five $2000 prizes devoted to aspects of the Columbia Engineering vision.

The VaxFlask team. From left to right: Bhoomika Kumar, Erin Liang and Min Tsou.

Transit Challenge

1st place: feLine, a public transportation assistant app to guide users through NYC subway crowds from Peggy Ding ’22, Theo Strongin ’22, Nolan Tremelling ’24, Nancy Wen ’22, Jiaqi Zhang MS’20 and Sareen Zhang MS’21

2nd place (tie): Stay in The Loop, a hook and reusable loop to safely use subway handrails without increasing transmission risks from Jillian Busetto ‘23, Alexander Moreno ’23, Destiny Meyers ’23 and Katherine O’Reilly ’23

Stay Subway Safe, a web/mobile app that illustrates expected crowding for station platforms given station name, date and time from Julian Briggs ’22, Mehr Kaur ’23, Andrew King ’22, Raayan Mohtashemi ’21, Xilin Wang ’22 and Wenqing Zhong ’22

3rd place (tie): Navigate Subway Stations, sleek signage to direct passenger flow in high traffic stations to make social distancing easier and more accessible from Santiago Bugallo, Brian Daniels, Ivanna Elkik, Cecilia Orduna ’21 and Serena Tsui ’21

In Transit, a turnstile data dashboard prototype for MTA station managers and operators to reduce crowding and exposure from Peter Cruz ’22, Omer Baddour ’21 and Pedro B T Santos ’22

Climate Change Challenge

1st place: Beyond Organic, a system using Li-ion batteries to sustain energy needed to power a hydroponic farm with renewable energy from Noah Czelusta ’24, Andrew Fagerheim ’24 and Doris Qian ’24

2nd place: Sea Lions, a project using market prices of electricity to determine when to power batteries used in cold ironing in the port of Los Angeles from Imelda Adjei ’23, Felipe Couto ’22, Brian Lei ’21 and Ryan Wu ’24

3rd place: Stop-n-Swap, a concept for redesigning long haul trucks with batteries for swapping infrastructure along a route from Seattle to Los Angeles to mitigate diesel emissions from Silas Swanson ’21 and Robert Winton ’21

Vaccine Challenge

1st place: Veggie Tales, an oral plant-based vaccine from Juliet Allen ’20 and John Zhou ’22

2nd place: The Immunogeniuses’ VaxFlask, modularized dual-layered vaccine vials from Bhoomika Kumar, CC ’23, Erin Liang ’23 and Min Tsou ’23

3rd place: Cold Chain-ge!, a concept for stabilizing vaccines in orally-dissolving films from Anuva Banwasi ‘24, Madeline Meier ’21, Laura Torre ’24 and Amy Wang ’21

Reducing Inequity Challenge

1st place: Cambiando Las Reglas, proposing reusable sanitary pads for low-income Andean women from Nicole Lindley ’23 and David Nieto ’23

2nd place: Communic-aid, a concept for communication aids for deaf people in hospitals from Tushar Agrawal MS’22, Plaksha Kapoor MS’22, Saloni Gupta Ajay Kumar MS’22 and Archit Matta MS'22

3rd place: Mitigating Food Inequity at Columbia During Covid-19, which hopes to turn pantry users into one-time delivery volunteers, from Emily Cai ’22, Hiba Elhababi ’22BARNARD, Bernadette Paulyn Gostelow ’21GSAS and Theresa Teng '24

Promoting Social Interactions Challenge

1st place: Columbia Connect, a platform for better and more personal conversations from Sanjana Jagannathan ’21, Naina Lavakare ’22BARNARD, Martha Wangechi Njuguna ’24 and Savannah Wu ’20GSAPP

2nd place: ZOOM ROOMS, a system for projecting lectures in lounges to prevent isolation from Fina Bertolotti ‘22BARNARD, Guntaash Sahani ’21, Emily Sandler ’24, Alexa Schlotter ’24 and Amelia Wissink ’24

3rd place: Discord Mentorship, a project enabling peer mentorship between students from Valerie Bownes (Tuskegee University ’23), Laura Torre ’24, Connie Tran ’24CC and Amy Wang ’24

Safer Medical Care Challenge

1st place: the Pregnan-C App, offering community and comfort for mothers during COVID-19, from Ini Ojediran ’24, Kelly Pu ’22, Eloy Sanchez ’24 and Helen Ugulava ’21

2nd place: MIA-Mask Infrared Assessment, an infrared mask-fit validation tool protecting healthcare workers from Bhoomika Kumar ’23CC, Nikita Manjuluri ’23 and Margherita Firenze ’23

3rd place: ViProtech PPE, a moisture-detecting, antiviral biofabric for intuitive reusable PPE from Leanne Pichay ’22, Adithya Shastry ’22, Kosisochukwu Ugorji ’24 and Joanne Wang ’22

The Finals

Grand Prize Winner: VaxFlask

Winner, Creative: Cold Chan-ge!

Winner, Healthy: Cambiando Las Reglas

Winner, Secure: ViProtech PPE

Winner, Sustainable: Stop-n-Swap

Winner, Connected: Communic-aid