Technion Rube Goldberg 2018 School Challenge: Results!

April 24, 2018
By: Meira Feinman

Ever heard of Rube Goldberg? He was a real person, a famous cartoonist who won the Pulitzer Prize, and the namesake of machines that mimic his drawings in making simple tasks complicated just for fun.

Katz Yeshiva High School’s co-winning entry in the 2018 Technion Rube Goldberg Challenge

When translated to a physical machine, the projects often require teamwork, determination, and plenty of STEM know-how.

In other words, it is a perfect contest for the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology to sponsor! This year, the theme was Israel’s 70th Anniversary, and the admissions were so creative and advanced that two schools tied for first—repeat winner Katz Yeshiva High School in South Florida, and Le Hong Phong High School in Vietnam. Bruriah, an all-girls high school in New Jersey, took second place. There was also a tie for third, between School 239 in Russia and Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School, Maryland. To watch videos of their winning entries, click their names.

Watch winning entries and other submissions here.

Watch the official announcement of the winners here.

Le Hong Phong High School’s co-winning entry in the 2018 Technion Rube Goldberg Challenge

“I was ecstatic,” says Katz Yeshiva freshman Max Frohlich upon learning that his team had won. “We worked diligently over a short period of time, right up until the deadline. It was an incredible experience, especially because of the Israel connection. And we were utterly surprised to have won, as the competition was fierce.”

In keeping with the contest’s theme, Katz Yeshiva’s Rube Goldberg machine told the story of Israel’s inventions, history and culture —using 47 different steps! Making sure that a rolling marble caused a mousetrap to snap shut, which closed a circuit that launched a homemade rocket . . . requires incredible coordination. “We benefited by participating in the challenge last year. We used more electronics and our ideas were more clever,” says Dr. Yosef Wolf, who heads up Katz Yeshiva’s STEM courses.

With double the number of submissions from last year, and teams competing from around the world including locations such as Australia, Nigeria, Czech Republic, Spain, Korea, South Africa, and South America, the Technion Rube Goldberg School Challenge is another vibrant example of the Technion’s growing global footprint and visionary educational programs.

In fact, the Technion believes in this program so much that the first-place prize is a one-year scholarship to the Technion, for students who are accepted. Two students who won the competition from Katz High School’s last year will be starting their Technion studies this fall!

Katz Yeshiva seniors Michal Amar, who was on last year’s winning team, and Noah Bernten, who competed for two years running, are using the 2017 prize scholarships to attend the Technion in the fall. “I can’t wait to study mechanical engineering at the Technion. It’s a great help to my family that I was able to win another year’s scholarship,” says Noah.

Second place teams receive a 3D printer for their school, and third place teams receive an Arduino computer design platform set.

For more than a century, the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology has pioneered in science and technology education and delivered world-changing impact. Proudly a global university, the Technion has long leveraged boundary-crossing collaborations to advance breakthrough research and technologies. Now with a presence in Israel, China and the United States, the Technion will prepare the next generation of global innovators. Technion people, ideas and inventions make immeasurable contributions to the world, innovating in fields from cancer research and sustainable energy to quantum computing and computer science.

The American Technion Society (ATS) supports visionary education and world-changing impact through the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology. Based in New York City, ATS represents thousands of US donors, alumni and stakeholders that invest in the Technion’s growth and innovation to advance critical research and technologies that serve the State of Israel and the global good. Over more than 75 years, ATS’s nationwide supporter network has funded new Technion scholarships, research, labs, and facilities that have helped deliver world-changing contributions and extend Technion education to campuses on three continents.