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Covestro Pittsburgh Regional Science & Engineering Fair

The goal of Carnegie Science Center is to provide a safe, welcoming, and enriching experience for all of our program participants. With the health and safety of our community, registrants, volunteers, and their families in mind, Carnegie Science Center has decided to cancel the 2020 Covestro Pittsburgh Regional Science & Engineering Fair. This decision is consistent with recommendations set forth by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and the Allegheny County Health Department regarding social distancing at large events. We know that students have worked very hard on their projects and we are disappointed they won’t have their time in the spotlight at the Science Fair, but we know their love of learning and excitement for STEM will continue. Thank you for your commitment to Carnegie Science Center and the Science Fair and we look forward to seeing you at next year’s event.


The Covestro Pittsburgh Regional Science & Engineering Fair (PRSEF) will celebrate its 81st year of open competition of research projects in the fields of science, mathematics, and engineering in March. This competition is open to all students in grades 6-12 from the 21 counties within Western Pennsylvania and Garrett County, Maryland. The Science Fair has been a Pittsburgh tradition since 1940. It is also the third oldest science fair in the United States under the affiliation of Society for Science and the Public, which runs the Intel International Science & Engineering Fair (ISEF) and the Broadcom MASTERS middle school competition.


Each year, approximately 1,000 students from more than 100 schools participate in Covestro PRSEF. Students spend the 12 months leading up to the Science Fair developing and executing a project by utilizing the scientific method.

In 2020, Covestro PRSEF will be held at Carnegie Science Center on Wed., March 25. That day, students will exhibit their research on a presentation board as they are interviewed by judges who consist of the area’s most distinguished scientists and engineers. An awards ceremony honoring the participants and naming the winners of cash prizes, scholarships, and trips will take place on Thurs., March 26 at Carnegie Music Hall in Oakland.

The Science Fair is presented by Covestro, FedEx, and various foundations, universities, colleges, industries, corporations, and professional societies. See a complete listing of our sponsors here.


Covestro PRSEF is affiliated with the Intel International Science & Engineering Fair opens in a new window (ISEF) and sends four Senior Division students on an all-expenses paid trip to attend ISEF every year.  ALL Senior Division students who participate in Covestro PRSEF may apply to attend Intel ISEF. See below for Intel ISEF application deadlines.

Additionally, Covestro PRSEF will nominate the first, second, and third place category award winners in the Junior and Intermediate Divisions to attend the Broadcom MASTERS Middle School Competition opens in a new window held annually in October in Washington DC.

Important Dates and Deadlines

Covestro PRSEF Deadlines:

School Registration Opens
– Tues., Oct. 1, 2019

School Registration Deadline
– Fri., Nov. 15, 2019

Student Registration Deadline for projects requiring pre-approval
– Fri., Nov. 29, 2019

Note: All projects involving potentially hazardous biological agents, human subjects (including surveys), non-human vertebrate animals, or potentially hazardous chemicals, activities, and devices require pre-approval.

Student Registration Deadline
– Fri., Jan. 3, 2020

Student Registration Deadline for schools with science fairs
– Fri., Feb. 7, 2020

Covestro Pittsburgh Regional Science and Engineering Fair
– Wed., March 25, 2020 at Carnegie Science Center

Covestro Pittsburgh Regional Science and Engineering Fair Awards Ceremony
– Thurs., March 26, 2020 at Carnegie Music Hall, Oakland

Intel ISEF Deadlines (9 – 12 grade only):

One copy of the student’s research paper and application must be mailed to:
Carnegie Science Center
Attn: PRSEF Director
One Allegheny Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15212
AND one copy of the student’s research paper must be emailed to by Fri. Feb. 28, 2020.

ISEF preliminary application form submission deadline
– Fri., Feb. 28, 2020

Final paperwork must be submitted to ISEF by winners
– Mon., April 6, 2020

Student must attend ISEF prep session – April 2020

ISEF will be held on Sun., May 10 – Fri., May 15, 2020

Note: Student must be a Covestro PRSEF participant and complete the appropriate preliminary paperwork to apply for ISEF.


The Science Fair will facilitate workforce readiness and career awareness by providing an opportunity for students to:

  • apply math and science content while igniting a desire for advanced learning in these areas
  • assist schools in meeting State and National Standards
  • communicate their research to an audience; and
  • connect with professionals from various fields of science and engineering


The Science Fair will become the venue to connect bright and motivated young scientists with this region’s industry, academia, and professional organizations to promote economic development within Western Pennsylvania. Introducing students to the science and technology opportunities within our region will facilitate the cultivation and retention of a tremendous resource – our youth.


The Science Fair will …

  • facilitate partnerships between state and regional science competitions to better serve the students
  • implement education programs to assist students and teachers in the Science Fair process
  • foster community awareness of regional opportunities in science and technology; and
  • partner students with industry and academia through mentorships, internships, and scholarships

Contact Us

Email questions or comments to or call the Science Fair office at 412.237.1534.