Outstanding high school students have shared in over $10,000 worth of technology prizes at the Sunshine Coast’s 2022 Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards.  

Suncoast Christian College (SCC) took out the top prize for Bird Bell, a discreet bird deterrent that will prevent injuries from the likes of swooping magpies and promote safety and wellbeing for sporting enthusiasts, picnic lovers and more, through a device that emits a high frequency, undetected by the human ear.

SCC’s team comprised students Tayah Allison, Chloe Lever and Alaya Page, led by School Coordinator Adam King.

Second place was awarded to Matthew Flinders Anglican College’s Amy Morrison, Tyler Cuttill and Bethany Slocombe, for their Orbital Caddy concept.

Orbital Caddy is a rotating shelf system, similar to a Ferris wheel, that allows easy access to each of the compartments designed for people with reduced movement or reach.

Peas in Pods created by Grace Murray, Amitis Rezazadeh and Eleanor Dean from Chancellor State College, came in third for their concept to provide a safe home for all in need through modular pod houses that are compact and temporary, whilst being sustainable.

The Emerging Entrepreneur Award went to Glasshouse Christian College student Jared Moss for a gamification app educating and connecting newly diagnosed youth with Type 1 Diabetes.

As winners of the top prize, SCC will receive an exclusive money can’t buy mentoring experience – a first for the Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards.

The winners will work with Garry Swanepoel from the Startup Precinct to join his new Young Starters Launch Program.

In another first, two previous participants in the Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards, Jameson Harvey from Red Dirt Robotics and Sarah Eisenmenger from Zest Robotics, shared their stories of how the MTIA has inspired a career in innovation and technology.

At the live pitch and awards ceremony last night (July 14) at Venue 114, Sunshine Coast Council Mayor Mark Jamieson said the quality of ideas local students were producing was astounding.

“These awards have been a tremendous success since they were launched in 2016, generating an impressive range of innovative and creative ideas,” Mr Jamieson said.

“What never ceases to amaze and delight me, is that we have an abundance of creative young minds here on the Sunshine Coast coming through this program.

“It certainly reflects our vision for the Sunshine Coast to be Australia’s most sustainable region: healthy, smart, creative.

“The young people pitching last night were the very demonstration of that vision in action and showed that we were on the right track in enabling opportunities to succeed in the 21st century.”

Telstra Regional Engagement Manager for South East Queensland Matthew Thornton, said he was blown away by the calibre of the team’s innovation and ideas.

“At Telstra, we are so proud of our long-standing association with the Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards,” Mr Thornton said.

“It is a fantastic program, especially the opportunity for teams to work with Industry Mentors to grow and expand their creative concept or idea.

“All of the finalist teams did a fantastic job pitching their idea and concept this evening and they all should feel very proud of themselves. 

“It was also very impressive seeing such a strong female representation on the winner’s podium last night and highlights why this program is so important in supporting females in STEM. 

The finalist teams and schools included:

SeaShaw – Suncoast Christian College             

Jasveen-Kynnan – Mountain Creek State High school

Bird Bell – Suncoast Christian College

Sam And Kyle – Mountain Creek State High School

JAJ – Mountain Creek State High School

Peas in Pods – Chancellor State College

MCSHS Group 2 – Mountain Creek State High School

Type 1 World – Glasshouse Christian College

Star Solutions – Matthew Flinders Anglican College


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