Steve Jobs famously said, “Innovation is the ability to see change as an opportunity—not a threat.” Jobs transformed the world with his creations, but he isn’t alone. Students all over the country are finding opportunities where others might only see threats. Carolina’s Young Innovators Program is working with a handful of these inspiring young people. From a young man who invented take-home science kits for children in his neighborhood to a young woman who is working to make clean drinking water available to all, these innovators are making the world a better place. With the help of this program, these students share what they’ve learned and encourage other students to innovate as well. You might have the next Young Innovator in your classroom right now.
Carolina’s Young Innovators Program
With a 90-year track record of supporting world-class, hands-on science education, Carolina Biological Supply Company began the Young Innovators Program. Its goal is to recognize outstanding student innovators and inspire all students in grades K-12 to explore STEM. By providing educators with excellent resources and support, Carolina wants to help teachers identify, inspire, and support Young Innovators in their own classrooms.
Meet Carolina’s Young Innovators
Sharing a passion for creative problem-solving, Carolina’s Young Innovators are an impressive group of students. They range in age, gender, race, and interests, but they all believe in using their curiosity and brain-power to help others. You can bring all of Carolina’s Young Innovators into your own classroom by downloading their Profile Cards. Available in both English and Spanish, the Profile Cards will allow your students to get to know each of these amazing young people and what motivated them to create their amazing innovations.
Joaquin Haces-Garcia created an innovative car-seat alarm
When he was 12, Joaquin saw a news report that upset him. A baby, accidentally left in a hot car, had died. Unwilling to let the tragic story pass by unnoticed, Joaquin sprang into action. He invented a magnetic sensor. This sensor rings when a driver turns off their car, alerting them that a child is still buckled in the back seat. Joaquin is proud of his invention but wants others to know that the innovation process, while rewarding, isn’t easy.
Joaquin’s advice for future Young Innovators: “Failure only makes you stronger,” he says. “Don’t be scared to fail.”
Augusta Uwamanzu-Nna created a cement that may prevent oil-rig catastrophes
17-year old Augusta initially set out to win her school’s science fair by choosing an unusual topic—cement. While researching, she learned that seven percent of the global carbon emissions came from cement production. Augusta wondered if something could be done to lessen concrete’s carbon footprint. During her investigation, she invented a cement mixture that was better able to withstand deep-sea conditions. Even though it wasn’t the innovation she had planned to create, Augusta has created a safer, more environmentally friendly cement that may prevent future oil rig disasters!
Augusta’s advice for future Young Innovators: “Take your passion and take what you like and do something really cool with it.”
Shemar Coombs created a headphone case that keeps the wires from becoming tangled and unusable
Shemar’s innovation might not stop an oil rig catastrophe but it does solve a problem that most young people are very familiar with. Tangled headphone cords. Inspired by a school project, Shemar created a headphone cord case that keeps wires untangled and ready for use. He used computer-aided software and a 3-D printer at his school’s maker space lab to create the prototype. He hopes that one day his innovation will be available in stores.
Shemar’s advice for future Young Innovators: “Always take the first step if you want to get something done.”
Meet More Young Innovators
From a young man who inspired millions to be what you want to be in STEM to a student who used LEGO bricks to improve the design of prosthetic hands, Carolina’s Young Innovators are an inspiring group of young people.
Could your student be the next Young Innovator?
Do you have a student who has been working hard to solve a complex problem? Carolina’s Young Innovators Program is looking for new Young Innovators! If you have a student in mind, recommend them for the program. Let Carolina’s Young Innovators Program know what this student has invented, what their aspirations are, and how they can help your student reach their full potential.
Want to inspire innovation in your classroom?
Are there a few STEM-savvy students who you know could do amazing things if just given the right push? Click the button below to get Carolina’s Young Innovators poster for your classroom. Finally, just print and hang in your classroom to inspire your students on the path to innovation.