Penn Design Challenge

Reimagine the way The Underbanked interact with their money

October 16 to November 6, 2015

Thanks to everyone who participated in this year's challenge!


The Wharton Innovation & Design Club is thrilled to partner with American Express and innovation accelerator Made by Many for the third annual Penn Design Challenge. Download the Info Session Deck for full details.

This year, students across Design, Engineering, and Wharton will help American Express rethink how the underbanked consumers manage their spending and interact with finances. American Express is leading the way to make the traditional financial system more inclusive: check out the trailer for the AmEx-sponsored documentary Spent: Looking for Change to get a taste of what’s in store for the Challenge.

What Will I DO?

The Challenge is a three-week competition that provides students a structured environment to design new solutions to real world challenges. Participants will be put into teams of 5-6 students from the UPenn schools to collaborate on a recommendation for and presentation to American Express.

Over a number of highly interactive workshops, product development and design experts from Made by Many will provide students an opportunity to learn best practices from design thinking, including:

  • User-Centric Research: Identify user needs and corresponding opportunities, and zero in on those with the highest potential impact.

  • Ideation: Flex creative muscles in generating novel approaches that address the most important user needs.

  • Prototyping: Build out and test your best ideas.

  • Storytelling: Craft compelling pitches that clearly convey the core problem and solution.


Why Join?

The Challenge is an opportunity to be part of something big and make a difference. You will:

  • Impact the lives of consumers who lack access to traditional financial services

  • Learn and live the principles of design thinking

  • Connect with industry experts from American Express and Made by Many, an innovation accelerator

  • Collaborate with students from the business, design, and engineering schools at UPenn


Info Session Deck