Destination Imagination Inc. (DI) is the world’s largest creativity and problem solving competition. DI is made up of two components: the central challenge and the instant challenge. Each year five central challenges are issued, combining in varying degrees the following six main themes: technical design, fine arts, scientific research, improvisation, structural/architectural design and service learning. The central challenges are prepared by teams in advance to the competition date. In addition to the major components of the central challenges, teams are able to highlight their unique talents and skills through marked components called team choice elements, which allow the team to create, perform or design anything they desire. Unlike the central challenge that is prepared prior to the competition, the instant challenge is given to the team during a short time frame at the tournament. The instant challenge tests the ability of teams to think on their feet and create quick solutions to problems.
The U of T Destination Imagination teams compete in Ontario on a provincial level and represents Canada internationally at the Global Finals in Knoxville, TN, where they compete against Universities worldwide. U of T DI also provides mentorship to many high school and elementary level teams through workshops and presentations, as well as aid in the appraising of these levels of competition at local competitions. U of T DI currently has the highest ranked University Level Canadian Destination Imagination team and holds much prestige and respect in the DI community.
Mentorship and Workshops
The U of T Destination Imagination program strongly believes in supporting younger teams in the development in their skills and abilities. As a result U of T has developed several different training programs to help assist elementary and high school level students in the Destination Imagination program. U of T DI offers a wide variety of workshops which focus on the themes of technical design, scientific research, fine arts, improvisation and structural design; and also offer customized workshops to help support teams throughout their development process.
U of T Destination Imagination also offers continuous support to teams through a yearlong mentorship program. U of T students check in with teams and offer them support in further developing their skills, managing their time and understanding the challenge rules and competition regulations. Recently one of the teams U of T students mentored achieved incredible success. The high school team in the technical challenge from St. Michael’s College School placed 3rd at the Global Finals, the highest ever awarded to a Canadian high school team at the International level.
In addition to workshops and mentorship, this year U of T intends to extend our support to even more elementary and high school students by offering an Instant Challenge Competition.