EVSC Early College High School Students Receive Awards at Innovation Challenge



Steve Jobs once said that “Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.” Students in the EVSC’s Early College High School demonstrated their leadership this past weekend at the Junior Achievement Innovation Challenge.


Five groups from the Early College High School participated in the challenge out of 18 groups from school corporations in Southwestern Indiana. Four of those groups, comprised of: Nick Belcher, McKaila Parker, Miranda Harper, Destiny Baxter,  Kayleen Meeks, Tyler Reifsteck, Abbi Moers, and Seth Carlisle, all received awards for their projects.


  • Nick Belcher’s product, “Lacefi” earned him third place and a cash prize and a $1,000, three-year renewable scholarship to the University of Evansville. Lacefi is a Wi-Fi shoelace that gives users unlimited access to the Internet through the use of satellite and one’s home network. Nick developed and built a prototype with Atheros Wireless Adaptors as a manufacturer of a prototype wireless router tie-in built specifically to Nick’s specifications.
  • McKaila Parker and Miranda Harper developed a no-show sock that does not slide off the heel like other no-show socks. Their product, “Sockease,” was actually modeled by McKaila and comes in many different colors. Sockease earned both students a $1,000 scholarship to UE, renewable for three years. In addition, Miranda received a $500, two-year renewable scholarship to Ivy Tech.
  • Destiny Baxter and Kaylen Meeks received a $500, two-year renewable scholarship to Ivy Tech for their project, “The Simple Life.” Their product was designed to help prevent spills. They developed a lid locking system that would lock on to throw away cups and keep the beverage in when spilled. Their project also earned them a cash award for the Most Efficient Idea.
  • The final group to win was Tyler Reifsteck, Abbi Moers and Seth Carlisle for their company, ARAC. ARAC is a reverse online sales idea which does the opposite of eBay. The proposed web-based service would list items people wanted to buy. Sellers would then contact the buyers through the website and bid to sell their items. Tyler received a $500, two-year renewable scholarship from Ivy Tech for this idea.

The challenge was the culminating activity of a program facilitated by Junior Achievement volunteers from area businesses and industry. As part of the challenge, students in Steve Tron’s Advanced Management and Entrepreneurship classes at Early College were grouped together and each was tasked with developing an innovative product that solved a need in our society. Along with their idea, students had to develop an elevator pitch and business plan for their proposed product. Then, a winning group from each class was selected and invited to participate in the Innovation Challenge.


In the first round – comprised of 18 group projects, five of which were from EVSC’s Early College High School – judges circulated through displays and discussed the products after each group delivered a five minute elevator pitch. Five of the top groups were then selected to move to the final round of judging. Two of the Early College’s five groups – Lacefi and Sockease – advanced to the final round in which students would present their product in an auditorium setting in front of a crowd and all judges.