Skip to toolbar

Bernard M. Gordon Learning Factory (@Home)

The Great Learning Factory Make Off

What’s a Make Off?

Penn State Thinkers, Tinkerers, and Engineers! Welcome to the first-ever Great Learning Factory Make Off!  

What’s a Make Off? – It’s a build and design challenge. We will give you a mission and you have to accomplish it. That’s it. Do whatever you want however you want, just stay safe and send us a video.

Open to rising or current Penn State students, we invite you to be adaptive, creative, constructive, and flex your engineering muscles. There will be four Learning Factory Make Offs held over the summer. Each Make Off will be announced here and will feature its own theme. The first three Make-Offs will each reward the Star Maker (a Penn State student) with a $500 cash prize with runners up winning awesome Learning Factory T-shirts and merchandise! The final competition will be an extra challenge for a $1000 cash prize.  Each Make Off challenge will be posted to allow students one to two weeks to design, build, and submit their invention.

Remember: we reward creativity. We want to see you having fun with this competition and coming up with ideas we’ve never seen before. The cooler and crazier, the better. Even if your contraption doesn’t work perfectly, we still invite you to show off your creativity. The winner and a few honorable mentions will be featured on our website for all to enjoy.

Make Off Submission Deadlines


Make Off #1 (Egg Fly) – June 26
Make Off #2 (Rube Goldberg Machine: COVID-19 Edition)-
July 10
Make Off #3 (Game Challenge) – July 24


Make Off #4 (Final Fantastic Functional)- August 7

The Final Fantastical Make-Off Challenge

Top Prize:

Tessa Beauchat


Runners Up Awards

Alvaro Tapia

Kaylie and Kylie Barber

The Make a Game Challenge Awards for Sporty Social Distancing 

Top Prize:


Lakshmanan Sockalingam 


Runner Up Award:


The Foodsball Award: 

Ouniol and Fagoyad Aklilu




The Rube Goldberg Machine (COVID-19 Edition) Awards for Outstanding Sanitization 

Top Prize:

Alvaro Tapia 


Runners Up Awards:

The Room 237 Moon Landing Award:

Lakshmanan Sockalingam 

The Danny and Arnold Award:

Kylie and Kaylie Barber

The Robert Zemeckis Product Placement Award:

Carter Lowell 

The Academy’s “Parasite” Award:

Dev Vikamsey 

The Egg Drop Fly Awards for Eggcellence


Runners Up Awards:


Claude Lévi-Strauss Bricolage Award:

Imani Murray


Oology Olympics Award:

Victoria Kotwica


Feeding Laika Award:

Jacqueline Luong