Make48 College Challenge

The Make48 competition centers on a timed, team competition – 48 hours to plan, prototype, and pitch a new product idea to meet a market challenge.  Each team will be asked to:

  • Design a new, material product within the assigned category, e.g.Kitchen/Housewares. The product theme will not be announced until the Kickoff Event.
  • Build a physical, look and feel prototype of the product idea using the Fabrication Labs provided. Teams will have full support from tool techs and experts to help build their prototype.
  • Prepare a pitch with a short promotional video (at least one minute) that clearly defines and demonstrates the need and solution provided by the product.

Make48 at the Kansas City Art Institute

Make48 has held two competitions at the Kansas City Art Institute at their David T. Beals III Studio in 2016 and 2017, both filmed for the public television documentary-style television series.

Filled with Epilog lasers, Shopbot Tools CNC machines, and 3D printers, teams were able to learn about how a prototype is created. The winners of each competition have the potential to get their product taken to market.

Watch Season 1 of Make48 Now!

The President of the Kansas City Art Institute, Tony Jones, talks about hosting Make48 at KCAI’s FabLab: the David T. Beals III Studio for the second year in a row.
Highlight Reel of September 2017’s competition created by Kansas City Art Institute students.

College vs. College 2018

12 collegiate teams compete in a Make48 competition 2018
  • Location: Stanley Black & Decker’s Innovation Lab in Baltimore, Maryland
  • Dates: August 10-12, 2018
  • Season 3 (filmed for Public Television)
We encourage a maximum of 3 college faculty to attend and learn how Make48 works and network with Make48 sponsors and major brands.


Late 2017: Colleges will be chosen by the Make48 team

January 2018: Announcement will be made for the colleges that will be competing in the Fall 2018 competition

January-April 2018: Colleges will recruit teams to apply

April 2, 2018: Team applications close

Mid-April 2018: Teams will be chosen by the Make48 Team and notified

College vs. College Event Details


Teams can apply via team application on the Make48 website. The College can be creative in promoting teams to apply.

Teams can consist of 2 to 4 undergraduate students. At least one member must be 18 OR older.

Make48 can supply colleges all they need to promote the event (videos, marketing ideas, etc.).


Teams will compete for the opportunity to be offered a ‘right of first refusal’ for licensing consideration by the title-challenge sponsor(s).


Product ideas and pitches will be evaluated by a panel of expert judges, who will consider various factors. Make48 and its national sponsoring partner will decide the challenge and select the judges.


Selected team members must pay a $95 competition fee.

Make48 will not pay for costs arising from the transport, taxes, customs fees, hotel, etc., related to the transportation of the team. Each team assumes responsibility for the costs of transporting its members.


Both Colleges and Make48 will work diligently to ideally have sponsors pay and offset the expenses for teams. Ex. (Competition fee, travel, and accommodation)


Make48 has the right to keep all prototypes and marketing materials created in the competition. Competitors cannot take the prototype and marketing materials created at the end of the competition unless authorized by Make48 or challenge sponsor partner.