Skip to main content

NMSU announces 33rd annual WERC Environmental Design Contest winners

A total of 107 undergraduate students from 11 universities competed in New Mexico State University College of Engineering’s 33rd annual WERC Environmental Design Contest April 16-19, at the New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum.

The WERC Environmental Design Contest brings industry, government and academia together in search for improved solutions to today’s environmental challenges in all fields of engineering. Real-world environmental challenges were presented in seven different tasks, and each team was challenged to build working models of their solution to the issue presented in the task they chose.

“We are so excited that we hosted 22 teams from 11 universities at the contest this year,” said Ginger Scarbrough, WERC program manager. “The increasing participation from across the country reflects the engineering students’ dedication to solving some of the most important environmental challenges that the world faces. Each year we select new challenges for the teams to solve. It is fabulous to see the creative and innovative ways that these students solve the problems.”

A total of $32,750 in awards were presented. Winning universities include NMSU, Arizona State University, California Polytechnic State University, Louisiana State University, Michigan Technological University, Ohio University, Oklahoma State University, University of Mississippi, Texas A&M University-Kingsville, Tennessee State University and Washington University in St. Louis.

NMSU received judges’ choice in task one and two, the Technology Development Sustainability Certificate in task three and four, second place in task five and an invitation to publish in WERC’s Conference Proceedings in the IEEE Xplore, a digital research database.

“Our NMSU teams were well represented,” Scarbrough said. “Five teams from NMSU entered the competition and four of them went home with prizes. Hannah Worker, an NMSU student whose team successfully helped reduce evaporation in mine tailings facilities, was one of the three students honored with the Terry McManus Outstanding Student Award.”

For a breakdown of all winners, awards, tasks and sponsors visit To learn more about the WERC Environmental Design Contest, visit