High School Competitions & Programs



9th – 12th Grade

VEX EDR (VEX Robotics) is a HS  competition in which students are given a yearly challenge, and must design & build a robot using aluminum and steel parts; use VEX's Robot C code to program the robot, and then drive it to complete the different challenges as best as they can.   At tournaments, teams participate in qualifying matches where two teams vs two teams participate; top-seeded teams then work together in alliances  and the alliance who wins the finals is the winner of the tournament! 



  • Teams of 4-6
  • Exciting engineering challenge presented in game form
  • Build innovative robots and compete during the school year

Try-Math-a-lon (TMAL)


9th – 12th Grade

Try-Math-A-Lon is a year-round tutoring program meant to foster good study habits for minority students, help prepare for standardized test exams such as the ACT and SAT, and promote competition and good sportsmanship. Held between teams composed of HS students in grades 9-10 & 11-12, the TMAL competition's purpose is to help groom TMAL team members for success in STEM courses; prepare them for standardized SAT/ACT testing as well excel academically and succeed in college.  **To participate, students must submission their HS Transcripts and most recent PSAT, SAT or ACT Testing scores. 

TMAL Goals 

TMAL aims to 

  • Develop a positive attitude for NSBE students towards academic excellence 
  • Develop a positive attitude towards self 
  • Stimulate enthusiasm about engineering and science 
  • Utilize NSBE Collegiate and Professional members as role models 


  • Teams of 4 (and a mandatory alternate)
  • Year-long tutoring program fosters good study habits
  • Access to online mathematics resources
  • Compete at NSBE’s Annual Convention



9th – 12th Grade

The KidWind challenge is a renewable energy challenge that allows students to explore electrical concepts and quantify energy and power of small wind turbines and solar power.   Students building and test their own wind turbines. 

When students participate in a KidWind Challenge they will: 

  • Discover the promise and limitations of wind energy technology
  • Design, build, and test a functional creative wind turbine
  • Compete with their peers in a supportive environment


  • Teams of 2-4
  • Hands-on renewable energy project
  • Engage in challenging activities while learning science and engineering basics
  • Build a small turbine

NSBE, Jr. Explorer


 9th-12th Grade

Individual or Group 

(Up to 4 per group)

  • Similar to citywide science fair, students have the opportunity to compete in & explore science in all forms through projects and presentations
  • Participants submit their project summaries and research papers for scoring at NSBE’s Annual Convention (in San Antonio, TX: March 25th-30st, 2019)

Program Goals:

  • Encourage Science Based inquiry in Pre-college students
  • Improve oral presentation and scientific writing skills

 **DMV NSBE, Jr. scholars will be mentored & taught college level research skills by Howard University graduate students! 

Microsoft Code Academy


Grades 9-12

Students will be able to jump start their future in STEM by choosing from coding classes ranging from Intro to HTML, JavaScript and CSS to Python, App Development and Game Design.

Coding classes will teach computer programming skills through interactive and exciting projects especially for kids who have great imaginations, like figuring out how things work or simply love technology.

Students will have so much fun creating video games, animated stories and bringing their imaginations to life not realizing all the cool skills he or she is learning along the way: basic coding and programming, problem solving, logic, physics and more!



Mandarin is the most widely spoken language in the world & is highly valuable for future engineers & other STEM professionals.  This introductory class is designed to use interactive lessons to teach students in grades 6-8  how to speak Mandarin Chinese by introduce them to the basic language needed for short  conversation.

 Students Will Learn: 

  • Basic spoken Mandarin phrases & vocabulary for everyday life
  • The importance of proper “tones” in Mandarin
  • Greater insight into Chinese culture and its influence on "pop culture"

**There is an additional fee for this year-round enrichment class that meets weekly for 90 minutes.  

**New for 2019-20:

Intermediate & Advanced Level Mandarin Classes!   

Engineering, Art & Design


Grades 9-12

Students work with an artist to work through the design process of their own sneaker.

**There is an additional fee for this    

12-week enrichment class. Exact meeting day & times TBA. 

Additional HS Programming


Professional Development & Youth Leadership Workshops  

Coming Soon!



Team Practices, Enrichment Classes & Workshops: When Do They Meet?

Many children in the DC Metro Area love STEM but may not want to be an engineer (or even know what engineers do).  For this reason, DMV NSBE, Jr. will offer a variety of STEM programming & other enrichment classes to our members.  To ensure that our members can not only participate in any of our chapter's programming AND outside extra-curricular activities; weekly team practices, enrichment classes, workshops and monthly chapter meetings will occur on the weekends:


Chapter Meetings: 3rd Sunday of Each Month (4pm-6pm)

Our student-led chapter meetings are hands-on intended for BOTH the student members AND their parents.  

Scheduling our programs on Saturday's & Sunday's gives students, parents & coaches the flexibility to have an enriching NSBE, Jr. experience while also giving them time to spend with family & nurture their non-STEM interests.

 Download a copy of the 2019-20 Program Schedule on the Membership Page. 


How Can We Juggle It All?

Schedules for team practices & enrichment classes will be determined by the dedicated volunteer coaches & mentors serving our children.  From our experiences, the most successful NSBE, Jr. chapters also have a high percentage of parent-coaches who have children in the chapter.   We hope you consider serving as a coach for one of your child's math or technical teams. Besides exploring engineering together & having fun guiding your child (& their teammates) in exciting hands-on STEM adventures - YOU, your co-coach and the parents on your child's team get to decide the practice meeting schedule!  Ex: Will our VEX IQ team practice on Saturday's from 1pm-2:30pm or Sunday's 2pm-3:30pm.  Does this time work well for everyone on our team?  Does it conflict with my son's football & karate schedule?  Will my daughter be able to do Future City, Mandarin, a coding class and also gymnastics with her travelling club program?  

Consider Being a Coach!  Coach & Mentor Training coming soon.