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Bernard M. Gordon Learning Factory (@Home)

The Great Learning Factory Make Off

Rube Goldberg Machine (COVID-19 Edition) Make Off Submission Deadline








The Rube Goldberg Machine (COVID-19 Edition)

July 1-10

Next fall, students will return to campus, and Penn State is doing all they can to prevent the spread of COVID-19. With hand sanitizing stations on every corner of campus, students will be pumping those bottles all day long. Why not have a machine do it for you? The goal of this Rube Goldberg Machine challenge is to squirt a dollop of hand sanitizer from a bottle. Get the ball rolling then relax as your machine kills 99.9% of all germs in the most complicated way imaginable! 

 You should be going through a design process in your concept development, and we would like to see more than just your final prototype. Test your contraption and build upon it, modifying it to make it better and better. In your video and submission, we would like to see you making modifications as you go through trials of testing and designing. Also, make sure we can see your hand sanitizer squirt!

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. 



There are none. You are only limited by your imagination. If you can dream it you can do it. We want to see what you and can do, so there are no limits. We love creativity, think outside of the non-existent box. Teams are allowed to compete together, but you will have to split any and all prizes.

Your Video

You will submit your innovation by sending us a video. We do not need a polished video with a polished invention. We want your design and your design process. Show us the modifications you made and all the failed hand sanitizer squirts. At the end of your “final” run, make sure you show the dollop of hand sanitizer to us. Private or public link is fine, just make sure we can see it. Make sure it’s only 2 minutes long!


If you would not do it in front of a Learning Factory TA, do not do it, period. For example, things like fire, high-velocity pellets, unnecessarily sharp objects and the like should be avoided.