Columbus-area students win Navy Gemini Award at 2017 Conrad Challenge

Posted: 5/8/2017 Categories: HOMEPAGE Headlines, Press Releases, Lincoln High School News
On Fri., April 28, at the 11th annual Conrad Spirit of Innovation Challenge (Conrad Challenge), the U.S. Navy presented the inaugural Gemini Award to contestants Julia Bray and Ashton Cofer, who are both Columbus, OH 9th-graders. Bray attends Gahanna Lincoln High School and Cofer attends Columbus Academy. The award recognized the duo for demonstrating Navy characteristics of teamwork, innovation, and hard work.

The Conrad Challenge is an annual, multi-phase, entrepreneurial STEM competition between top high school students from around the world, culminating in the three-day Innovation Summit. This year’s summit was held April 27-29 at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in Titusville, FL. There, teams presented innovative, commercially viable products to benefit humanity in four categories: Aerospace and Aviation, Cyber Technology and Security, Energy and Environment, and Health and Nutrition.

In addition to winning the Navy Gemini Award, Bray and Cofer also won the Pete Conrad award in the Energy and Environment category for their invention of the patent-pending Styro-Filter, a device that converts Styrofoam waste into activated carbon, which can be used to purify water. (Last year, while in eighth grade, Bray and Cofer won the FIRST Lego League Global Innovation Award and a STEM-in-Action grant at theeCYBERMISSION event for their Styro-Filter invention.)

The U.S. Navy began its sponsorship of the Conrad Challenge in 2016, and in 2017 strengthened its presence at the Innovation Summit. In addition to creating and presenting the new Gemini Award, four Navy officers served as judges in categories related to their specialties: CAPT David W. Bouve - Aerospace and Aviation; LCDR Chris Coy - Cyber Technology & Security; LT Hamilton Gubanc - Energy & Environment; and LCDR Brett Chamberlin - Health & Nutrition.

"The Navy and the Conrad Foundation both share a deep commitment to STEM-related career fields,” says CAPT David W. Bouve, National Director of Marketing and Advertising for the Navy Recruiting Command. “We are extremely proud of the inaugural recipients of the Gemini Award and wish Julia and Ashton great success in their future endeavors."

 

About the Conrad Spirit of Innovation Challenge (Conrad Challenge)

The Conrad Challenge was founded by Nancy Conrad in honor of her late husband, Charles "Pete" Conrad Jr., a U.S. Navy officer and aviator. He was selected as an astronaut in the second round of pilots chosen to join NASA and became the third man to walk on the moon during the 1969 Apollo 12 mission. He set an eight-day space endurance record on the Gemini 5 mission, and commanded the Gemini 11 mission. He logged more than 6,500 hours flying time and 1,179 hours of spaceflight. In 1978, he was awarded the Congressional Space Medal of Honor.

Columbus-area students win Navy Gemini Award at 2017 Conrad Challenge

Posted: 5/8/2017 Categories: HOMEPAGE Headlines, Press Releases, Lincoln High School News
On Fri., April 28, at the 11th annual Conrad Spirit of Innovation Challenge (Conrad Challenge), the U.S. Navy presented the inaugural Gemini Award to contestants Julia Bray and Ashton Cofer, who are both Columbus, OH 9th-graders. Bray attends Gahanna Lincoln High School and Cofer attends Columbus Academy. The award recognized the duo for demonstrating Navy characteristics of teamwork, innovation, and hard work.

The Conrad Challenge is an annual, multi-phase, entrepreneurial STEM competition between top high school students from around the world, culminating in the three-day Innovation Summit. This year’s summit was held April 27-29 at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in Titusville, FL. There, teams presented innovative, commercially viable products to benefit humanity in four categories: Aerospace and Aviation, Cyber Technology and Security, Energy and Environment, and Health and Nutrition.

In addition to winning the Navy Gemini Award, Bray and Cofer also won the Pete Conrad award in the Energy and Environment category for their invention of the patent-pending Styro-Filter, a device that converts Styrofoam waste into activated carbon, which can be used to purify water. (Last year, while in eighth grade, Bray and Cofer won the FIRST Lego League Global Innovation Award and a STEM-in-Action grant at theeCYBERMISSION event for their Styro-Filter invention.)

The U.S. Navy began its sponsorship of the Conrad Challenge in 2016, and in 2017 strengthened its presence at the Innovation Summit. In addition to creating and presenting the new Gemini Award, four Navy officers served as judges in categories related to their specialties: CAPT David W. Bouve - Aerospace and Aviation; LCDR Chris Coy - Cyber Technology & Security; LT Hamilton Gubanc - Energy & Environment; and LCDR Brett Chamberlin - Health & Nutrition.

"The Navy and the Conrad Foundation both share a deep commitment to STEM-related career fields,” says CAPT David W. Bouve, National Director of Marketing and Advertising for the Navy Recruiting Command. “We are extremely proud of the inaugural recipients of the Gemini Award and wish Julia and Ashton great success in their future endeavors."

 

About the Conrad Spirit of Innovation Challenge (Conrad Challenge)

The Conrad Challenge was founded by Nancy Conrad in honor of her late husband, Charles "Pete" Conrad Jr., a U.S. Navy officer and aviator. He was selected as an astronaut in the second round of pilots chosen to join NASA and became the third man to walk on the moon during the 1969 Apollo 12 mission. He set an eight-day space endurance record on the Gemini 5 mission, and commanded the Gemini 11 mission. He logged more than 6,500 hours flying time and 1,179 hours of spaceflight. In 1978, he was awarded the Congressional Space Medal of Honor.