Speed Teams

Every year, teams are presented with a different problem that they need to fix. Competitions are sponsored by organizations like the Society of Automotive Engineers, the American Society of Civil Engineers, the American Institute of Steel Construction, FIRST Robotics Competition, the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. Identifying a solution to the problem – and coming up with an innovative way to do it – will drive that team to the finish line.

Interested in seeing if you have what it takes? Pick a SPEED team and find out.

Collage of SPEED teams

Baja SAE

Design and build an off-road vehicle that can navigate the challenges – from deep mud and water to sand and steep hills.

SAE Clean Snowmobile Challenge

Reengineer existing snowmobiles for improved emissions and noise reduction without compromising performance. Choose between zero-emission or internal combustion.

Steel Bridge

Teams design, fabricate and construct a take-apart steel bridge that’s easy to build, relatively light and able to withstand incredibly heavy loads.

Chem E Car

Design and build a model-sized car powered by a (non-combustible) chemical reaction that carries pre-determined cargo a certain distance.

Design, Build, Fly

Design, fabricate, and demonstrate the flight capabilities of an unmanned, electric-powered, radio-controlled aircraft.

Human-Powered Vehicle

Design, build, test and race a lightweight vehicle, using high-performance bicycle components and aircraft-grade aluminum that could be used as reliable transportation in underdeveloped or inaccessible parts of the world.

Formula SAE

Design, build, test and race a scaled-down, Formula-1-style race car. Utilize classroom skills by incorporating the economic aspects of the automotive industry.

Concrete Canoe

Design and build a canoe out of concrete that is able to float and navigate waterways. This team will definitely test your engineering, production and paddling skills!

FIRST Robotics

Mentor Massena High School students as they design and build a remote-control robot that will compete in two different competitions.

Timber Bridge

Partner with local groups to design, fabricate and install a timber frame bridge. This team combines engineering skills with community outreach.

Construction Management

Learn the fundamentals of construction industry management, learning the ropes while gaining experience in planning a construction project.

"Recruiters consider competitions job interviews and look to smaller schools like Clarkson because they know our students are 100% involved with the project, from start to finish."

Bob Davis, Director of SPEED

14 Teams
300+ Students from all majors
Hands on Advantage: 20-25 Students per teams


Clarkson SPEED teams are 100% student-run. Team members are required to take charge of a diverse array of duties. These range from recruiting new team members to taking charge of project scope and budget to figuring out project leadership to finishing competition requirements on time.

With an average of 15 to 20 students per team, members gain hands-on real world experience that future employers notice. Team members learn how to work efficiently with students from a variety of backgrounds and majors in a team environment similar to the engineering industry. Through a series of project-related tasks, students improve communication skills, learn how to be effective leaders and, most importantly, have a lot of fun!

Interested in joining a SPEED team? Recruitment starts in the fall during the first Tuesday of classes.

"I'm involved in the SPEED Steel Bridge team, designing and building a special project and then competing against other teams. There's pressure, but it's a lot of fun. We get together every Saturday from 9–5 to work on the project, and then we go to dinner. I've made new friends and worked with new tools!"

Kyle Thomson '20, BS Civil Engineering

Kyle Thomson
"The enthusiasm and aims for professionalism that I have observed in the Clarkson students involved in the SPEED teams reconfirms my confidence that Clarkson graduates industry-ready engineers. I appreciate how students gain the hands-on opportunities to work with our products before they graduate. Snap-On Tools wants to compete to recruit talented students like them as well as give them the best tools to work on their competitive projects".

Thomas L. Kassouf '74, President, Snap-on-Tools Group