Here at Ozobot, we are all about bringing STEAM into the spotlight. That’s why we loved partnering with City of STEM! Recognized as L.A.’s science festival by the Science Festival Alliance, City of STEM is a platform to unite the diversity of Greater Los Angeles, rallying the public around science and drawing attention to the region’s continued national importance in STEM research, education and industry, from aerospace to biotech.
Last month, City of STEM announced the winners of their Innovation Challenge, presented by SoCalGas. The challenge asked middle school students to unlock inventive ideas to address real-world challenges facing Los Angeles such as clean energy, sustainability, recycling, and transportation. Two 8th graders from Stauffer Middle School in Downey, CA, Bailey Canham and Evelyn Vaca, took home the grand prize with their brilliant storm drain project.
The engineering project, which was the second first place win for the girl-powered duo, consisted of constructing a new filtered storm drain system that would force trash into a garbage chute and allow only water to pass through to the oceans.
A perk of being grand prize winners? Bailey and Evelyn got to spend an entire day in L.A. meeting leading innovators with Alan Zack, President of Carrot, as their tour guide, and took home other awesome prizes (like an Ozobot Evo)!
Ozobot HQ was one part of the girls’ L.A. VIP Leading Innovators Tour, and our engineers were excited to meet them! Bailey and Evelyn got an inside look at some secret projects we are working on, as well as in-depth information on the process and steps it takes to bring our visions of Ozobot to life.
“I think it is really cool because they are people who are succeeding in a field that is really interesting and possibly what I may want to do someday, so it feels cool to see somebody that has done it,” Bailey said.
Evelyn and Bailey were also able to sit down and talk with us about their promising futures. Bailey is hoping to eventually have a career in cyber security and Evelyn is interested in several subject areas, including English. “I don’t know [what I want to do], there are so many options now and you can make a career out of anything!” She said.
We could not be more proud of these two girls and what they have accomplished and will continue to achieve in the years to come! We can’t wait to see what exciting things are to come for both of them and wish them the best of luck!
Check out their brilliant storm drain filtration system idea here: