Greenbrier East High School educator Kevin Warfield was recently awarded a Lemelson-MIT Excite Award. The award is given annually to a select group of educators across the country who have applied to receive a Lemelson-MIT InvenTeam grant for the following school year and have been selected as a finalist. Award recipients participate in invention education learning opportunities as part of an all-expense paid trip to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) for the Lemelson-MIT Program’s annual EurekaFest, a multi-day invention celebration in mid-June.
Educators are selected for this award based on their capacity to lead a year-long, open-ended invention project with students at their school. At EurekaFest, Excite Award recipients meet and are inspired by current InvenTeams, teams of high school students, teachers and mentors that received grants of up to $10,000 each to invent technological solutions to real-world problems. Kevin Warfield will see the InvenTeam projects, learn more about the InvenTeam experience and attend hands-on workshops and discussions led by MIT professors about invention – unique technological solutions to real world problems.
“Excite Award educators who attend EurekaFest leave the event prepared to ignite an interest among high school students in science, math, engineering and invention,” said Leigh Estabrooks, invention education officer from the Lemelson-MIT Program. “They gain new techniques to empower their students through problem solving and encourage a sustainable culture of invention in their school and community.”
Warfield, pre-engineering teacher at Greenbrier East High School initiated the InvenTeam application process in the spring of 2016 and will be invited to submit a final application for the InvenTeam grant after attending EurekaFest that will be due in September. Warfield will work with the students [and mentors] throughout the summer to finalize Greenbrier East High School’s grant application. Warfield will also reach out to community members with expertise in fields related to the problem that the students plan to address through a technological invention for insight and guidance on how their invention can best serve the community.
A prestigious panel of judges composed of educators, researchers, staff and alumni from MIT, as well as former Lemelson-MIT award winners, will assemble in the fall and select the final InvenTeam grantees.