Illinois (Chicago)

Regional Coordinator: Don Wittmer, P.E.

Call for Mentors - STEM - Award-Winning Future City® Competition for 2019-20: ​​​​​​​Clean Water: Tap Into Tomorrow

Chicago  The  State of Illinois Future City® Competition is Calling for Mentors to work with school teams in the upcoming competition titled "Clean Water: Tap Into Tomorrow" for its 2019-2020 competition. Specific experience in the concept is helpful; however, knowledge of how to evaluate ideas and problems is desired and valuable to the student teams. Being a mentor is an excellent way for you and your company to participate in building future leaders in the engineering industry.

More students and teams will be registering through October 31, 2019, for this award-winning, project-based learning experience, and competition. The State of Illinois Future City® Competition is planned for Sat., Jan. 18, 2020 at Whitney-Young Magnet School in Chicago.  To register as a mentor and for more details, to

Student and Team Registration are open through October; however, teams begin their projects in early September with their school's mentors. Sign up now!

Mentors are asked to coach their teams for the regional competition, which requires meeting about two times per month with the team at their school. Your participation, from the fall to the competition, will strengthen problem-solving, promote teamwork, and encourage citizenship while building a unique relationship as a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) mentor. 

As a mentor, you will be part of a select group of professionals.  Begun in 1992, the Future City® Competition is part of the rich history of DiscoverE.   In the US, over 40,000 students, representing 1,500 schools and 40 regions, take part in the Future City ® Competition. 

"This year's competition requires students to create a vision for the future regarding clean water with the concept of "Clean Water: Tap Into Tomorrow. " This is an important topic, and new solutions are needed globally. This is the 28th  year of conducting this regional competition, and we are very proud of the students, schools, and all of the mentors involved each year," said Future City® Competition Regional Coordinator Don Wittmer, P.E., Transportation Manager with HNTB.

The winning team from the Illinois competition will travel to Washington, D.C. to compete in the national competition held in February during National Engineers Week. Teams present their ideas at Regional Competitions in January. US regional winners then face off at the Future City® Finals with a growing roster of international teams, including those from Canada and China. Taking place in Washington DC, February 15-19, 2020, during Engineers Week, the exciting competition culminates with one team taking home the grand prize of a trip to U.S. Space Camp and $7,500 for their school’s STEM program (provided by Finals sponsor Bentley Systems).

“Our goal is to obtain $25,000 in sponsorships this year to fund the event for the students. If you are interested in being a supporter, individual and company sponsorships are available and much appreciated by the students and educators.  We are very fortunate to be able to continue this competition each year,” stated Deborah Hodges, grant manager of FCC and president of Golden Square.

For more information, contact Future Competition® Regional Coordinator Don Wittmer, P.E., HNTB at, Matthew Miller, P.E., HNTB, at or Grant Manager & PR/Media Relations Deborah J. Hodges, Golden Square at

About DiscoverE

DiscoverE is leading a growing volunteer movement that inspires and informs present and future generations to discover engineering. Our network of volunteers in the US and abroad is drawn from the DiscoverE coalition of more than 100 professional societies, major corporations, and government agencies. Together we meet a vital need: introducing students, parents, and educators to engineering, engaging them in hands-on engineering experiences and making science and math relevant. For more information, visit

Future City® State of Illinois

The State of Illinois Future City® Competition® is celebrating its 28th year as a regional group in the national competition. The regional competition involves teams, schools, and professionals from Illinois.  In addition to the actual competition, Annual Chicago Engineers Benefit Dinner showcases the top local teams and award winners. For more information, visit our website here or go to


Future City® Regional Coordinator

Don Wittmer, P.E., HNTB


Future City® Regional Committee Contact

Matthew Miller, P.E., HNTB


Grant Manager & Press Contact

Deborah J. Hodges, State of Illinois 

Golden Square