(FRANKFORT, Ky.) – More than 8,000 students, educators and parents will converge on Lexington for the ninth annual Student Technology Leadership Program (STLP) State Championship on Friday, April 22.

Students from 399 schools and 99 districts will show what they know and can do with technology in the arts and STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) fields, and demonstrate many career-ready skills during the day-long event at Rupp Arena and the Lexington Convention Center.

STLP students create projects, products or services as part of the program and demonstrate their learning by competing in one or more of 50 categories, including instructional, technical or community service projects; digital content creation such as digital art, photography, design, programming, app development and robotics; and technical services, such as the student help desk, network engineering and wireless applications. Students with the best projects, products and services have been invited to compete at the championship.

More than 500 STLP projects will be on display in Heritage Hall; with students striving to be a Best in State project winner. In addition, nearly 300 Digital Product finalists will be scored to find the top winners for each category. There also are 26 different Live Performance categories that challenge students to demonstrate specific technology skills on demand such as coding, game design, mobile application programming, engineering, podcasting and media arts production.

The event is open to the public between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. ET. The winners in each grade division of every competition category will be recognized during the STLP Award Ceremony at 5 p.m. ET on the floor of Rupp Arena. The top three Best in State STLP Project winners will travel to Denver in June to represent Kentucky at the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) Conference/Expo. The Best in State STLP Technical Projects and winners in all Live Performance and Digital Product categories also will be named. The award ceremony is webcast live via the KDE Media Portal at http://mediaportal.education.ky.gov/watch-live/.

The State Championship is run almost entirely by volunteers from across the state, including the dozens of students in the STLP Student Service Corps. These student leaders work along volunteer professionals to provide media coverage via STLP media outlets, produce a documentary of the day’s events and manage production and live video broadcasts, while also providing participants with technical support.

STLP is open to all P-12 students. The program uses project-based learning to empower, challenge and motivate students and to increase learning and achievement through the creation of technology-based solutions to school and community needs.

The Kentucky Department of Education’s Office of Knowledge, Information and Data Services (KIDS) sponsors STLP events to highlight the creative, logical and entrepreneurial talents of students across the Commonwealth. For more information, please visit http://stlp.education.ky.gov