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Gelfand Science, Engineering, and Maker Fair Program

Program Overview

The goals of the Gelfand Science, Engineering, and Maker Fair program are to increase student participation in and raise the quality of school science, engineering, and maker fairs. All public, private, charter, and parochial schools in Cuyahoga, Lorain, Medina, Summit, Lake, Geauga, and Ashtabula counties are eligible to apply with priority given to schools in those districts designated as “high-needs” by the Ohio Department of Education.

Funded by the Leonard Gelfand STEM Center, teachers may request up to $1,000 to support a fair in their school. Applicants proposing fairs with 20-50 students may request up to $500, those proposing fairs with 51-75 students may request up to $750, and those proposing fairs with more than 75 participants may request up to $1000. We anticipate funding 10-15 fairs in the 2016-17 school year.


  • Gelfand awardees are expected to hold their school fair by May 5, 2017.

  • Gelfand awardees must fully participate in program assessment. This will include each student completing a short Experimental Design Aptitude Test and attitude survey, both pre and post.

  • Gelfand awardees must complete a brief report on the outcomes of your school fair including an itemized list of expenditures. This information is used to document the impact of the program. Reports must be submitted by May 26, 2017.

Distribution of funds

Funds are held by Case Western Reserve University. Teachers may elect to purchase approved materials and submit receipts to CWRU for reimbursement. To minimize out of pocket expenses, it is recommended teachers order supplies through CWRU and have them delivered directly to their school.

Progam Components

    Gelfand Fellows

    Gelfand Science and Engineering Fellows are available to mentor your students as they plan, prepare, implement, and present their projects. Gelfand Fellows are CWRU undergraduate and graduate students trained to work with K-12 students in project development, experimental design, data analysis, and data presentation. All Gelfand Fellows have passed both BCI and FBI background checks and have successfully completed a 9-hour training program that provides tools and strategies for working with students at every stage of the project process.

    Equipment Loan Program

    The Gelfand Equipment Loan Program is intended to provide tools students can use to complete science fair projects. A variety of basic laboratory equipment (balances, thermometers, water baths, etc.), probeware, and other materials are available. Inquire for details.

    Institute for Collaboration and Innovation: think[box]

    Think[box] is CWRU’s new invention center that provides a space for anyone to tinker and creatively invent. Combining the latest in digital technology (3D-printers, laser and vinyl cutters, circuit board router, large format printer, the fanciest sewing machine you are ever likely to encounter), with traditional shop tools, think[box] is a one of kind fabrication space. Inquire for details on how to access think[box].

    6th Annual Gelfand Expo

    On May 23, 2017, CWRU will host the 6th Annual Gelfand Expo. The Expo will be an opportunity for select students in grades 4-6 to work with experienced researchers to discuss the project development process.

Click here for an application (PDF) or call (216) 368-­‐5289 for more information.

5th Annual Gelfand Science and Engineering Fair Expo Pictures – May 25, 2016

6th Annual Gelfand Science and Engineering Fair Expo Pictures – May 23, 2017