It’s game on as the Challenge begins

Students from western NSW have launched the Game Changer Challenge today as their schools compete in the first of seven semi-finals across the state.

Image: Rising to the Challenge: Students take part in today's Dubbo semi-final that includes schools from the west and far west regions of NSW.

The first regional semi-final in the annual Game Changer Challenge takes places today in Western NSW.

Today’s semi-final is one of seven across NSW featuring 420 students in 84 teams from primary and secondary schools working to solve the real-world wicked problem of “How might we use technology to bring everyone in our community closer together?”

This year’s colossal event will be delivered virtually in response to COVID-19 restrictions, with teams enabled to compete from their school instead of travelling to a central location.

The students in each semi-final will be led through a rigorous design-thinking process to develop their ideas in solving the complex problem.

Design thinking is a human-centred approach to problem solving and innovation, with empathy and collaboration at the heart of the process.

Mark Scott, Secretary of the NSW Department of Education, said today’s students would solve the great challenges of the future.

“To flourish in this world they will need to be deep thinkers, critical and reflective, empathetic and creative,” Mr Scott said.

“The Game Changer Challenge aims to highlight and develop these future-focused skills.”

Image: Real world problems: Game Changers at today's semi-final work their way through a tricky problem.

Students will be guided through the day by expert facilitators working virtually in classrooms. A series of ‘Super 7’ innovation showcase videos featuring leaders in technology and innovation has been created to help inspire students to expand their game-changing ideas and realise how powerful the design-thinking process can be.

Each team will pitch their ideas to a judging panel before a junior and senior semi-final winner is announced.

A live stream grand final event on 1 December will determine who will take home the title of 2020 Game Changer Challenge Champions.

Members of the public can join in the action by voting in the People’s Choice Award, selecting their favourite pitch from the winning teams in each semi-final. The People’s Choice will open after all semi-finals have run and will be published on the Game Changer Challenge webpage.

The 2020 Game Changer Challenge is supported by our partners: IBM, KPMG, Microsoft, Telstra, The University of Newcastle, UTS, Forbo, IntraSpace, Luminaton and Winc.

Visit the Game Changer Challenge website to find out more.

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