The Collegiate Inventors Competition Judging Process

Find out how we determine the Winners.

Judging Is Completed In Two Rounds

Round One: Initial Judging

Each Collegiate Inventors Competition® (CIC) entry is reviewed by our initial judging panel, which includes scientists, researchers and experts in a variety of fields.

The National Inventors Hall of Fame® (NIHF) relies on the Judges’ collective scores and rankings, along with data collected by independent researchers, to determine our CIC Finalists.

All Finalists are notified two months before our final judging round.

Round Two: Final Judging

In October, CIC Finalists gather at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) headquarters in Alexandria, Virginia. Here, they meet with our final judging panel to formally present the work they’ve done to develop their extraordinary inventions.

Our final judging panel consists of NIHF Inductees and special guest Judges, which have included intellectual property experts from the USPTO, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, and Abbott Laboratories, among others.

Following the Finalists’ presentations, our Judges deliberate to select Winners in both the Graduate and Undergraduate categories.

Round One: Initial Judging
Round Two: Final Judging

Meet our 2022 Judges

NIHF Inductees

JD Albert

Electronic Ink
2016 NIHF Inductee

Sylvia Blankenship

1-MCP for Fruit, Vegetable and Flower Freshness
2022 NIHF Inductee

Eric R. Fossum

CMOS Active Pixel Image Sensor Camera-on-a-Chip
2011 NIHF Inductee

Marcian "Ted" Hoff

1996 NIHF Inductee

Lonnie Johnson

Super Soaker®
2022 NIHF Inductee

Don Keck

Optical Fiber
1993 NIHF Inductee

Alois Langer

Implantable Heart Defibrillator
2002 NIHF Inductee

Victor Lawrence

Signal Processing in Telecommunications
2016 NIHF Inductee

Radia Perlman

Robust Network Routing and Bridging
2016 NIHF Inductee

Steve Sasson

Digital Camera
2011 NIHF Inductee

Gary Sharp

3D Digital Cinema
2015 NIHF Inductee

United States Patent and Trademark Office

Gary Benzion

Supervisory Patent Examiner

Jackie Cheng

Supervisory Patent Examiner