Los Altos Academy of Engineering

The Pete Conrad Challenge is a annual, multi-phase innovation and entrepreneurial competition that encourages young adults from ages 13-18 from around the globe to create products and/or services that address global challenges.


Conrad Challenge (2017-2018) - Innovation Summit
By Amy Tam & Vicky Zhai

"After over a year of hard work and persistence, we earned ourselves a chance to attend the Spirit of Innovation Challenge International Summit, a three day competition that took place in Florida at the NASA Kennedy Space Center. This event celebrates innovation and creativity as event finalists from all corners of the world join together to pitch their ideas to a final set of judges. The judge panel, which are made up of naval officers, field experts, and investors, all worked together to provide teams with advice and feedback that would significantly improve their projects.

 

 


Each day, our schedule was filled with exciting activities that allowed us to learn about others and establish relationships. The keynote speakers were one of the many highlights of this trip. From acclaimed writers and speakers to even company CEO’s and United States naval officers, we had the honor to hear their individual stories. We, along with all other finalists, had the opportunity to discuss a wide variety of concepts to these esteemed individuals and discuss their careers and making connections in the future.
Throughout this whole trip, we were surrounded by peers who valued innovation and creativity just like us. We had the chance to witness the brilliance of other great minds as we attended all the sessions where teams presented their pitches. From the issues that exist within the realm of space and aviation to energy and environment, teams presented unique and innovative solutions to each challenge. Their dedicated approach toward identifying and solving the issues that we as humans face in a “no box thinking” manner is truly inspirational for us.

 

 


We presented our product, RollX, in front of a panel of health and medical field experts where we received questions and advice that would spark new innovation and ideas. From our category of health and nutrition, we were awarded the 2018 Conrad Spirit of Innovation Power Pitch Winner, which recognizes the team whose sales pitch were exceptionally presented.
This trip provided us with a chance to network and establish connections with people from different backgrounds. The friendships that we have made is one of the most valuable takeaways from this trip. We hope to attend the summit again next year along with more teams from our program so they can also experience this life-changing event.
This whole journey would not have been possible without the guidance and feedback of all of those who assisted us along the way. We wish to express our most sincere gratitude and appreciation to all of our supporters."


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