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A First for the Priority One's Young Innovator Awards

A First for the Priority One's Young Innovator Awards

MEDIA RELEASE:  Wednesday 5 June 2013. The Young Innovator Awards (YIA) challenge young people to think creatively and to come up with innovative ideas for the design of a product or service.  In previous years the awards have been open to secondary school students.  In 2013 a new Young Professionals category will offer the opportunity for a person under 40 that lives in Tauranga or the Western Bay of Plenty to enter to win $2,000 cash.

Economic development agency, Priority One’s, Instep programme began building a culture of innovation in Tauranga and the Western Bay in 2010 by establishing the Young Innovator Awards. The vision of the initiative is to develop a culture of innovation in the Western Bay of Plenty sub-region through inspiring and encouraging young people to become true innovators.  Innovation is one of the six key ingredients needed to grow a business, as highlighted by the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment’s Business Growth Agenda.  

One young professional keen to enter the awards this year is Charles Leota, a physical education teacher from Otumoetai College.  He is the first teacher to take up the challenge.  Charles says “Besides the monetary value of the award, I decided to enter as YIA could help me develop an educational application I have been working on for two years.  It will be great to work with the YIA mentors to create this app for use in education.  Thinking holistically, being innovative and creative benefits us all in the educational world as it keeps learning alive, interesting and fascinating.”

YIA organisers are delighted to see the first teacher stepping up to the challenge and leading the way towards encouraging other teachers and young professionals to enter with their innovative idea.  Lyn Parlane, Priority One’s Instep Manager, believes that there are a number of Western Bay of Plenty teachers that have some great ideas they could communicate to this year’s Young Innovator Awards judges.  “Teachers are important role models for young people and it is great to see the first teacher entering and helping grow the skills that business needs,” says Lyn.

Key partners in the Young Innovator Awards are Priority One's Instep Programme, product development company Locus Research and Woods The Creative Agency, a creative agency focused on branding.

In addition to the great cash prizes on offer, entries from all finalists will be on display at the Bayfair Shopping Centre during August when people from across the community will have the chance to vote for their favourite idea.  Entries close on 4 July 2013.


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