American-Made Challenges


Geothermal Collegiate Competition - Fall 2023

College students: Compete to solve real-world geothermal technical and policy challenges for a chance at thousands in DOE prize funding!

This challenge is closed

Winning Team Stakeholder Engagement Events

This challenge is closed




Registration for the Fall 2023 Geothermal Collegiate Competition is closed in on October 4, 2023. All teams who wish to compete in either the Policy or Technical Track must have registered by this date.

If you are competing, make sure you have completed the registration form by clicking "Begin Entry":

  • Signing up as a team on HeroX is the first step, but the team captain must also click "Begin Entry" and complete the registration form to fully register. 
    • The registration form asks which track you want to participate in (policy vs technical), as well as team member names, emails, majors, school name, etc.
    • Email if you have questions.

Welcome to the Fall 2023 Geothermal Collegiate Competition (GCC)! Stay up to date on competition announcements and details by clicking the "follow" button at the top right of the page. 

  • Through the Geothermal Collegiate Competition, the U.S. Department of Energy Geothermal Technologies Office (GTO) encourages students to develop innovative solutions for geothermal energy application challenges and build career skills for the clean energy workforce. 
  • Fall 2023 GCC prize amounts:
    • 1st place, Technical Track: $10,000
    • 1st place, Policy Track: $10,000
    • 2nd place, Technical Track: $6,000
    • 2nd place, Policy Track: $6,000

Registration opened on August 1, 2023, and will close on October 4, 2023. Click "Solve This Challenge" and fill out the registration form to enter!

Teams must have at least three undergraduate and/or graduate members and students of any discipline can participate. Final competition deliverables will be due in December 2023.

New to the Fall 2023 GCC, there are now two competition tracks: Technical and Policy.

  • Technical Track teams present a technical plan for deploying a geothermal heating and cooling system for a proposed community or campus of their choosing, including a conceptual design of the needed geothermal system based on community needs, benefits, and available resources.
  • Policy Track teams present a high-level plan for installing a geothermal heating and cooling system in a community or campus, focused on an analysis of the regulatory environment and an assessment of economic considerations for the project.


Please review the official rules for the complete application process and instructions for competing.

Specifics to note:

  • This competition is open for undergraduate and/or graduate students pursuing any major or minor. GTO aims to raise awareness of geothermal resources among communities and the public through this competition, thereby broadening the geothermal stakeholder base.
  • The Geothermal Collegiate Competition invites participation by teams of at least three students enrolled in accredited U.S.-based collegiate institutions or U.S. citizens enrolled at non-U.S. based collegiate institutions. In this case, “collegiate institution” refers to any school of post-secondary or higher education, including but not limited to community colleges, technical colleges, and traditional four-year and graduate-level universities. See “Who Can Enter” in the Geothermal Collegiate Competition Rules for more information on eligibility. 
  • There is no cost to register or participate.
  • Additional details are available on the Geothermal Collegiate Competition webpage.

If you want to receive updates on the prize or have any questions, please use the "Follow" feature on this HeroX platform or message us directly at .


Challenge Updates

Recording of the 2023 GCC Winners Announcement Now Available

Feb. 23, 2024, 7:49 a.m. PST by GCC Prize Moderator

The recording of the winners announcement for the 2023 Geothermal Collegiate Competition (GCC) is now available! Thank you to those who attended the virtual event and thanks to all who participated in the competition.

We wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors and hope to see some of you again for next year's GCC!


2023 Geothermal Collegiate Competition Winning Teams

Feb. 15, 2024, 12:08 p.m. PST by GCC Prize Moderator

The winners of the 2023 Geothermal Collegiate Competition were announced by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) today!

Congratulations to the first-place teams:

  • The University of Oklahoma (Team GeoTribe) -- Technical Track
  • Columbia University and Princeton University -- Policy Track

Second-place teams were:

  • The University of Tulsa -- Technical Track
  • University of California San Diego -- Policy Track

Learn more about the student projects in the full announcement, also available in Spanish

A recording of the virtual event where winners were announced will be available in the coming weeks and will be posted to HeroX.

Congratulations to all the competitors in this year's competition! 

  • The 2024 edition of the Geothermal Collegiate Competition will be announced by June 2024 and will take place during the fall semester. 
  • For our graduates -- best of luck and we encourage you to join the clean energy workforce!

Winner Announcement Tomorrow for 2023 GCC!

Feb. 14, 2024, 9:23 a.m. PST by GCC Prize Moderator

Join us tomorrow for the 2023 GCC winner announcement!

  • Register for the virtual event taking place on Thursday, February 15 at 1 p.m. ET.
  • The announcement will take 30 minutes.
  • Make sure at least one member from your team is able to attend to see if you won!
  • Family, friends, mentors, etc. are also welcome to join.

GCC Winner Announcement! Virtual Event - Feb. 15, 1 p.m. ET

Jan. 18, 2024, 10:37 a.m. PST by GCC Prize Moderator

Winners of the Fall 2023 GCC will be announced at a virtual event on Thursday, February 15 at 1 p.m. ET!

Tune in to see who takes home the $32,000 in prize funding across the technical and policy tracks. 

  • 1st and 2nd place winners for each track will be announced.
  • The virtual event will last 30 minutes.
  • Please make sure at least one member from your team is able to attend!

A written winner announcement will also be released by DOE later in the day on Feb. 15. Register for the Fall 2023 Geothermal Collegiate Competition virtual winner announcement event today!

Final Deadline for Fall 2023 Geothermal Collegiate Competition!

Dec. 20, 2023, 3:51 p.m. PST by GCC Prize Moderator

Today - Wednesday, December 20 - is the final deadline for submissions to the Geothermal Collegiate Competition for Fall 2023.

  • Submissions must be received through the HeroX platform by 11:59 p.m. MT tonight, December 20, to be eligible for the competition.
  • Submit your deliverables as soon as possible!

Reach out to with questions; you will receive a response during regular business hours on Thursday, December 21.