CSTA/ACM Cutler-Bell Prize

Computer Science Today
Available October 27, 2021 thru January 19, 2022

CSTA/ACM Cutler-Bell Prize

The ACM/Cutler Bell Prize in High School Computing is designed to recognize talented students intending to continue their higher education in the areas of computer science or technology. The program seeks to promote and encourage computer science and empower young and aspiring leaders to pursue computing challenges outside of the traditional classroom environment.

The Award

Up to four winners will be selected annually and will receive:

  • A $10,000 scholarship (administered through the financial aid department at the university the student will attend)
  • A trip to the CSTA 2022 Annual Conference in July to receive the award. Travel and lodging will be provided for the winner and one guest.
  • recognition on CSTA and ACM's websites
  • Opportunity to present on your project at the CSTA Conference and to at a Computer Science Honor Society webinar in the fall of 2022.

Eligibility Requirements

To apply for the Cutler-Bell prize, you must:

  • Live in the United States
  • Be a graduating high school senior at an accredited school
  • Plan to continue studying computer science
  • Create an original computational artifact (e.g., program)

Application & Review

Students must develop an original computational artifact that engages modern computing technology and computer science. See previous winners to learn about the types of projects selected. This year, to help better prepare students for the application, a google document of all applications is available for review; we encourage students to make a copy to prepare their answers before submitting. Students must develop an original computational artifact that engages modern computing technology and computer science. See previous winners to learn about the types of projects selected.


The application includes:

  • Description of your project and development (two essays of <1,000 words each)
  • Project source code and executable file
  • A short video showing and describing the project (2 minutes)
  • Consent form (under 18over 18)

A group of educators will review all submissions and judge the project's ingenuity, complexity, relevancy, originality, and the student's desire to further computer science as a discipline.

Applications for 2021-22: Open

The application is open until Jan. 18, 2022. To apply for the award, please follow these steps


Gettings Started/Submittal Process

  1. Go to the application website.
  2. Select "submit application."
  3. Create a Cvent account using the email address you use.
  4. Follow application prompts, and fill out all required information, including the consent form. 
  5. You will receive a confirmation message when submitted. If you have any questions regarding the process, please reach out to All applicants will receive notice of their application status by early March 2022.

Things to know: 

  1. By making a Cvent account for your submission, you can edit and work on it before submitting it. We encourage you to use this functionality and prepare your application answers by reviewing the application questions document
  2. Notifications regarding decisions for awards are usually sent in mid-March annually. 
  3. You can nominate a student to apply for this award by filling out this form.

Past CSTA/ACM Cutler-Bell Prize Winners


Sahithi Ankireddy

Maurice Korish

Brian Minnick

Emily Yuan

Read about the winners. 


Kevin Meng 

Lillian Kay Petersen

Axel S. Toro Vega

Zeyu Zhao

Raghav Ganeth, Honorable Mention

Read about the winners.


Naveen Durvasula

Isha Puri

Eshika Saxena

Varun Shenoy

Read about the winners.  



Elizabeth Hu

Avi Schwartz

Aaron Walter


Sreya Guha

Amir Helmy

Amy Jin

Benjamin Spector & Michael Truell



Cheery Zou

Valerie Chen

Matthew Edwards

Karthik Rao

Zack Baker, Honorable Mention

Maya Varma, Honorable Mention 


The prize is made available through a $1 million endowment established by David Cutler and Gordon Bell. Dr. Cutler is a software engineer, designer and developer of several operating systems including Windows NT at Microsoft and RSX-11M, VMS and VAXELN at Digital Equipment Corporation. He is Senior Technical Fellow at Microsoft. Dr. Bell is an electrical engineer and an early employee of Digital Equipment Corporation where he led the development of VAX. He is now a researcher emeritus at Microsoft Research.

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