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Minnesota State University, Mankato
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March 3: Annual Regional Rube Goldberg Machine Contest

This year's task is applying a BAND-AID®.

Minnesota State University, Mankato Media Relations Office News Release, 2-20-2017

Mankato, Minn. – Eighteen teams of high school students (ages 14-18) from Minnesota and Iowa will compete to design the most elaborate and hilarious (but also functional) ways to apply a BAND-AID® Friday, March 3 at the annual Rube Goldberg Machine Contest at Minnesota State University, Mankato.

The public is welcome to attend the Rube Goldberg Machine Contest from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Friday, March 3 in the Centennial Student Union Ballroom. There is no cost.

The teams participating will vie for a regional title and to qualify for the Rube Goldberg Machine Contest on Sunday, March 26 at the Center of Science and Industry in Columbus, Ohio, where teams will compete to become the Rube Goldberg Machine Contest Division II champion. A complete nationwide calendar of Rube Goldberg events is available online.

The March 3 regional event marks the seventh year that the event has been held at Minnesota State Mankato. Event sponsors include the Minnesota Center for Engineering & Manufacturing Excellence and Minnesota State Mankato’s College of Science, Engineering and Technology.

Judges for the competition will include university and college faculty, staff and students as well as industry representatives and community members.

For more information, contact Stephanie Zojonc, interim STEM outreach director for the Minnesota Center for Engineering and Manufacturing Excellence (MNCME), by phone at 507-389-2110 or by email at

A Rube Goldberg Machine Contest is an event where students of all ages compete with the machines they have imagined, designed and created in a fun and competitive forum. The competitions encourage teamwork and out-of-the-box problem solving, in a fresh learning environment and level playing field. To compete in a Rube Goldberg Machine Contest requires only a pile of junk and a great imagination.

The first National Rube Goldberg Machine Contest was held in 1988.

Rube Goldberg (1883-1970) was an engineer, sculptor, author and Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist who depicted overly complex machines performing simple tasks. The machines that he drew often were impossible to build and operate, but were entertaining because they defied implementation.
Goldberg spent most of his career as a cartoonist for the New York Evening Mail, founding the National Cartoonist Society and winning a Pulitzer Prize.

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The Minnesota Center for Engineering and Manufacturing Excellence (MNCEME) is a consortium of two-year colleges located throughout Minnesota, led by Minnesota State Mankato. The goal of the Minnesota Center for Engineering and Manufacturing Excellence is to develop forward-looking talent in engineering and advanced manufacturing, which is accomplished through STEM-based outreach, innovative degree programs and professional development.

Minnesota State Mankato, a comprehensive university with 15,110 students, is part of the Minnesota State system, which comprises 31 state institutions.

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