WEST CHESTER (November 19, 2019) – High School students are encouraged to tap their creative and strategic-thinking skills to solve real-world transportation challenges in a statewide competition, state Senator Andy Dinniman said.

Students in grades 9-12 are invited to participate in the 2019-2020 PennDOT Innovations Challenge before the December 20 entry deadline.

This year’s Innovations Challenge asks students to address the problem of litter alongside state roadways by creating cost-effective and innovative strategies aside from laws, programs, and educational campaigns.

“Litter on our roadways not only impacts the scenic beauty of Chester County, but it also presents environmental hazards and dangers to wildlife, waterways, and nearby agriculture,” Dinniman said. “Chester County is home to some extremely bright and innovative young people. I have no doubt this contest is a great way to showcase their creativity and problem-solving skills.”

Last year, PennDOT spent nearly $13 million to clean up roadside litter and 5,000 volunteers worked through Adopt-A-Highway to combat litter. Through a new and innovative solution to this problem, these resources could be diverted to other projects.

Regional Innovations Challenge winners will be selected and invited to compete in Harrisburg for the state championship. This year, the Pennsylvania Chapter of the American Traffic Safety Services Association (ATSSA) and the Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful (KPB) organization are providing a combined total award of $3,000 to be divided among the first, second and third place statewide winning teams.

For more information and to apply online, visit https://www.penndot.gov/about-us/PennDOT2020/Pages/Innovations-Challenge.aspx