Seniors Laura Gonzalez and Linda Powers celebrate winning 1st place for their Miles For Smiles proposition during Maryland’s Do Good Challenge held in the Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center on April 28, 2015.

Miles for Smiles, a team working to get better dental care for children in rural Honduras, and Press Uncuffed, a group raising awareness about imprisoned journalists around the world, each took home the $5,000 grand prize in their category at the Do Good Challenge on Tuesday.

The fourth annual event, held in Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center, ends the eight-week competition between 69 student teams, each with a chosen cause and philanthropy plan.

“Each year the finalists raise the bar on their impact and quality,” said Robert Grimm, a professor and director of the philanthropy and nonprofit management program. “We want to demonstrate that students can make a huge impact on a cause they care about now, and emphasize that with the right strategies and the right passion you can make a huge impact locally and around the world.”

Miles for Smiles won in the projects track and Press Uncuffed placed first in the ventures category. The second and third place winners in each category also took home $2,500 and $1,000.

More than $20,000 was distributed among teams, including a $2,500 Audience Choice Award, which Miles for Smiles also won, and a $750 Showcase Audience Award, which went to No Taboo. Period, a group collecting pads and tampons for a women’s shelter.

“This is for me perhaps the most inspiring, exciting, engaging event, because I believe that every Terp, every student at this university, should be a social entrepreneur and a social innovator,” university President Wallace Loh said.

A panel of judges ­— including Ben Simon, who won the inaugural challenge for his work with Food Recovery Network in 2012 — chose the winners from the six finalist presentations at the event.

Morgan Stanley was the event’s lead sponsor, and the entire competition was led by this university’s Center for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Leadership in partnership with the Center for Social Value Creation.

“It’s amazing to come back. It feels like I’ve come full circle,” Simon said. “This is one of the most inspiring aspects of my job, to interact with students the next generation of social entrepreneurs.”

Miles for Smiles hosted a 5K race that symbolized the distance many people in Honduras have to walk to receive dental care. With its online fundraising site, it surpassed their original goal of $1,000 to raise almost $4,000 before the challenge.

Using these additional funds, they will be able to send dental hygiene kits to these rural communities throughout the year and buy more equipment for dentists traveling there, said co-presenter for the group Laura Gonzalez, a senior communication major,

“We dedicated our lives to this over the past few weeks,” said senior Linda Powers, also a co-presenter. “Every time we got nervous or tired we were like, ‘This isn’t about us, this is about a bigger cause.’”

Press Uncuffed is an advocacy group that sells bracelets to raise money and awareness for journalists imprisoned around the world.

The bracelets are clear to symbolize the transparency of journalism, and cuff-like to allude to the handcuffs imprisoned journalists wear, said Kirsten Craft, the project’s financial director.

“This issue is really important because it’s a clear human rights violation but also people really don’t know about it,” the graduate student studying nonprofit management and leadership said. “You don’t think these journalists are being held in prison by real governments respected by the United States.”