High School Teams Receive Lemelson-MIT InvenTeam™ Grant for Invention Projects

15 Student Teams Tackle Everyday Challenges through Invention and Creativity

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--()--Incorporating hands-on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) opportunities into today’s high school learning environment will give tomorrow’s leaders the critical thinking skills needed to solve challenging problems.

Today, the Lemelson-MIT Program awarded 15 teams up to $10,000 each in grant funding as part of its 2014–2015 InvenTeam initiative. The teams, representing schools nationwide, comprised of students, teachers and community mentors will pursue year-long invention projects that address real-world problems. The InvenTeam initiative aims to inspire a new generation of inventors by engaging students in creative thinking, problem-solving and hands-on learning opportunities in STEM.

“Lemelson-MIT Program InvenTeam students often embrace the role of invention as public service,” said Joshua Schuler, executive director of the Lemelson-MIT Program. “This year’s teams are tackling barriers to the well-being of those in their own communities; they are solving problems that are right in front of them by addressing safety needs, developing aids for others, and inventing green - sustainable and environmental - solutions.”

Proposed invention projects from the 2014-2015 InvenTeams include a safety device for children in hot cars to prevent vehicular heatstroke, a personalized, interactive learning experience for students with special needs to help students enjoy and excel in school, and a vacuum that attaches to New York City subways to pick up garbage on the tracks to minimize environmental health hazards.

Meet the 2014–2015 InvenTeams
A respected panel of invention and academic leaders from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the Lemelson-MIT Program, industry and InvenTeam student alumni selected this year’s InvenTeams from a national pool of applicants. The 2014–2015 Lemelson-MIT InvenTeams and their proposed inventions are:

Safety First

  • Concord High School (Wilmington, Del.): Metal detection system for hospital textile cleaning
  • Davenport West High School (Davenport, Iowa): Heat detection bracelet with communication features for children and pets in warm vehicles
  • Gary and Jerri-Ann Jacobs High Tech High (San Diego, Calif.): Animal welfare containment and notification system
  • Hill Country Education Foundation (Austin, Texas): Continuous flow water device for fire fighters
  • South Brunswick High School (Monmouth Junction, N.J.): Proximity sensor and alert system for automobile doors
  • University High School (Irvine, Calif.): Aerial wilderness distress monitor and search system

Aiding Others

  • Coppell High School (Coppell, Texas): Interactive training device for students with special needs
  • Northampton High School (Northampton, Mass.): Self-feathering rowing oar for people with physical disabilities
  • Wahlert Catholic High School (Dubuque, Iowa): Anti-rollback device for manual wheelchairs

Inventing Green

  • Baruch College Campus High School (New York, N.Y.): Detachable rubbish vacuum for New York City subways
  • Broken Arrow Senior High School (Broken Arrow, Okla.): Low-cost, sustainable fish food for developing countries
  • John D. O’Bryant School of Mathematics & Science (Roxbury, Mass.): Autonomous solar panel cleaning device
  • Laguna Beach High School (Laguna Beach, Calif.): Water disinfection system utilizing solar power for developing countries
  • SAIL High School (Tallahassee, Fla.): Autonomous weed removal robot for small scale farming
  • St. Anne’s-Belfield School (Charlottesville, Va.): Lightweight, low-cost water filtration device for use after a natural disaster

The 20142015 InvenTeams are coached by an inspiring group of teachers who have also been recognized with some of the highest honors in STEM education. Among this year’s InvenTeam teachers are Elisabeth Jaffe (Baruch College Campus High School InvenTeam teacher), recipient of the 2013 Sloan Award for Excellence in Teaching Science and Mathematics and 2011 Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching, Donna Gradel (Broken Arrow Senior High School InvenTeam teacher), recipient of the 2014 Medal of Excellence for Secondary Teaching in Oklahoma, Steven Sogo (Laguna Beach High School InvenTeam teacher), winner of the 2013 Delta Education/CPO/Frey Scientific Award for Excellence in Inquiry-based Science Teaching, Scott Swaaley (Gary and Jerri-Ann Jacobs High Tech High InvenTeam teacher), 2014 Allen Distinguished Educator Award winner, and Michael Yakubovsky (Coppell High School InvenTeam teacher), National Instruments 2014 Excellence in Engineering Education Award winner.

“All of our InvenTeam teachers are inspiring. They are professional engineers, master teachers, biological researchers, and award winners. This year’s teachers seek to integrate a strong balance of science, technology, engineering and math learning as they coach students through their invention projects and engage students in their learning,” said Leigh Estabrooks, invention education officer for the Lemelson-MIT Program. “We’re thrilled that these accomplished teachers are igniting an inventive spirit among their students.”

The 2014–2015 InvenTeams will showcase their projects at EurekaFest™ in June 2015. EurekaFest is the Lemelson-MIT Program’s public, multi-day celebration of the inventive spirit at MIT in Cambridge, Mass.

Calling All Young Inventors!
The Lemelson-MIT InvenTeam application for the 2015–2016 school year is now available at http://lemelson.mit.edu/inventeams. Teams of high school students, teachers and mentors are encouraged to apply.

ABOUT THE LEMELSON-MIT PROGRAM
Celebrating invention, inspiring youth

The Lemelson-MIT Program celebrates outstanding inventors and inspires young people to pursue creative lives and careers through invention.

Jerome H. Lemelson, one of U.S. history’s most prolific inventors, and his wife Dorothy founded the Lemelson-MIT Program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1994. It is funded by The Lemelson Foundation and administered by the School of Engineering at MIT, an institution with a strong ongoing commitment to creating meaningful opportunities for K-12 STEM education.

ABOUT THE LEMELSON FOUNDATION
The Lemelson Foundation uses the power of invention to improve lives, by inspiring and enabling the next generation of inventors and invention based enterprises to promote economic growth in the US and social and economic progress for the poor in developing countries. Established by prolific US inventor Jerome Lemelson and his wife Dorothy in 1992, to date the Foundation has provided or committed more than $175 million in grants and PRIs in support of its mission. For more information, visit http://lemelson.org.

Contacts

Cone Communications
Molly Owen, 617-939-8445
mowen@conecomm.com
or
Lemelson-MIT Program
Stephanie Martinovich, 617-258-0632
smartino@mit.edu

Release Summary

Today, the Lemelson-MIT Program awarded 15 teams up to $10,000 each in grant funding as part of its 2014–2015 InvenTeam initiative.

Contacts

Cone Communications
Molly Owen, 617-939-8445
mowen@conecomm.com
or
Lemelson-MIT Program
Stephanie Martinovich, 617-258-0632
smartino@mit.edu