Perhaps the raised bar of seasoned engineers will make the students think harder or outside the norm.
However, I would like to say the last contest colleagues of mine were in was for a government contract. Which is better, a trophy or $800,000 for phase two of a project?
I agree to a point, but we really do need to encourage the next generation of engineers.
These contests help to do that.
What I would really like to see is a lower level event where every high school could compete and run the contest through state and country levels. If we could just hook the kids on the joys of technology, we could encourage a future with even neater accomplishments.
I love these events.
They stimulate the students to try new technologies.
They show the public which technologies are currently ready for use and which still need some work.
From what I have seen, there are no losers in these contests. We all win.