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Awards Draw Out the Best in the Bay

Young Innovator Awards Continuing to Draw Out the Best in the Bay

Innovation, creativity and ‘pure genius’ is once again being asked of the youth and yo-pros living in the Bay. With serious prizes on the table, there’s no better time for young innovators of the region to seek inspiration, roll up their sleeves and enter the 2014 Young Innovator Awards.

Established in 2009 by Priority One, the Young Innovator Awards (YIAs) has steadily become an iconic competition in the Western Bay of Plenty region.

Entries are now open for the competition that encourages both students and young professionals alike to take a look at the market and identify – in their opinion – current market needs and, from there, create a solution to that need.

This year’s YIAs sees several new elements introduced to the awards. There is a new prize category where one entrant will be chosen as the Overall Supreme inner from all categories, and will win $5,000 cash. This award is sponsored by Careers Another element sees the competition widening its ‘innovator’ base by affording entry to those studying at the polytechnic level.

Lyn Parlane of Priority One’s Instep Programme, the organisation behind the awards, wholeheartedly believes in this competition and believes the wider this competition extends, the more effective it will be in drawing out real kiwi ingenuity from the young innovators of the region.

“We’re still in very early days of this year’s competition yet we’ve already received an encouraging number of entries which is very exciting! Essentially, these awards are about fostering a culture of innovation in the Bay, and some of the creations we’ve seen coming through epitomise this. We are seeing innovation from the next generation of our region’s, our nation’s, and even our world’s leaders.”

Once again, Bayfair Shopping Centre is supporting the Young Innovator Awards by
hosting the People’s Choice award. Entries from every finalist will be displayed in the shopping centre between 28 July and 3 August, where members of the public can vote for their favourite innovation. The winner of the People’s Choice award will receive a $600 Bayfair voucher.

Bayfair Marketing Manager Kylie McGregor is looking forward to playing host to this year’s innovations, and is really encouraged by the uptake of the competition in the “I love the Bay; not only for the weather, but for the people and minds that make this place great. It’s engrained in us from a young age to think creatively and outside the box, and it’s competitions like the Young Innovator Awards that continue to encourage this kind of thinking. I’m proud that Bayfair has a hand in this year’s awards - I’m really looking forward to seeing the fruit of these innovations!”

Previous years’ entries have never failed to disappoint. Last year, for example, saw creative entries such as ‘eco sea lettuce compost’, a scuba diving mask with pressure screen inside’ and a ‘stroke rehab machine’. The overall prize was awarded to the ‘swap tip tooth brush’ created by Emily McCarthy of Tauranga Girls’ College.

2014 applications are being accepted now and close on Friday, 4 July at 5pm.

Further information on how to enter the awards can be found at www.yia.co.nz.
In the lead up to the awards, Bayfair Shopping Centre is also giving away gift
vouchers to the winners of weekly questions about innovation through YIA’s
Facebook page. Visit www.facebook.com/YoungInnovatorAwards.

The entry categories and prizes are:

Junior: Years 9 and 10 - $1,000 cash prize

Senior: Years 11, 12 and 13- $1,000 cash prize. Senior Secondary Student winner
will also be awarded a $500 start-up mentoring session to further develop their idea.

Young Professionals: Under 40 years – cheque for $3,500

Winners also receive the opportunity to spend time with a business mentor to further Internship Award: Two week internship opportunity: one week at Locus Research and one week at Woods, The Creative Agency.

People’s Choice: $600 Bayfair voucher.

© Scoop Media

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