Saturday, May 21 will see the first ever Innovation Competition in the Old North State Council. This event is the culmination of the pilot year of Young Innovators, an exciting new middle school program aimed at getting young men and women involved in solving real-world problems related to S.T.E.M. (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics).
In the fall of 2015, four schools formed a total of eight Innovation Teams with nearly 90 young men and women. They began by electing leaders from their peers, one to serve as Project Manager and others to serve in roles such as Chief Researcher, Lab Manager, Technical Manager, and Safety Manager. They then began brainstorming what kind of project they could design that would solve a problem related to one of four categories:
- Our Basic Needs
- Protecting Our Home
- Energizing Our World
- Improving Our Health
Each category addresses different areas of concern related to science and math around the world. The teams had to design a project that would show creativity and thorough planning.
Once the project was decided and a plan was in place, the teams had to create a materials list and a budget, two items that were necessary to apply for a grant to cover their expenses. The grants were funded by the Carter Family S.T.E.M. Initiative, a program created by David and Melissa Carter because of their dedication to the idea that all young people deserve opportunities to get excited about and explore S.T.E.M. fields.
On Saturday, these teams will come together to show off their work and discuss how they went about designing their projects and what kind of challenges they faced. Over 100 people will be in attendance to see what these Young Innovators have come up with to change the world.