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Day Three: Finalist Pitch Event Photo Tour

April 04, 2016


Students headed out early to the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts and took their spots in the Green Room to prep for the day. First on the agenda was a photo shoot. Pictured above, Birmingham finalist Desiree Brooks in front of the Dr. Phillips' Alexis & Jim Pugh Theater.

Next, students got acquainted with judges over lunch in the Center's VIP lounge. Then, it was onstage for a full dress rehearsal. Each finalist took center stage to run through his or her presentation and get last-minute tips. Pictured below, Bakersfield's Samantha Miranda (left) and Jennifer Reyes (right) practice their entrance.

At the pre-show reception, finalists mingled with judges and guests. Below (from left) Hanna Verma, Orlando; judge Scott Faris; and Chris Skalnik and Victor Xiao, Indianapolis.

At last it was time for the Finalist Pitch Event. Students won high praise from judges for their incredible STEM ingenuity and commitment to changing the world for the better. Below, Tampa Bay's Xavier Almeyda pitches "AisleFindIt," his Bright Idea to revolutionize the grocery list and save shoppers time and money.

Chrs Skalnik and Victor Xiao (below) wow the crowd with the ”Anti-Resistance Antibiotic," their innovation to make food safer.

Competition was neck-and-neck, but in the end, Hannah Verma took home the Grand Prize with her life-saving Bright Idea, the “Verma Hygiene Mister.” Hannah is pictured below center stage with Kimberly Maki, corporate vice president, corporate communications and public relations, Bright House Networks.


Each finalist received a crystal 2016 Bright Ideas STEM from Today's Youth medal. Below, Samantha Miranda and Jennifer Reyes show off their awards onstage with Kimberly Maki.

Before the night was over, finalists took time for media interviews. Below, Desiree Brooks stops in the Green Room to talk with Orlando's TV News 13.

After a final round of photos, the evening ended with a Bright Ideas STEM from Today’s Youth VIP Reception and Dinner honoring the finalists. Below, Xavier Almeyda (third from right) is surrounded by his proud family.

For her Grand Prize, Hannah has the opportunity to work with product and innovation firm Astralis Group to further develop her Bright Idea. Coming soon: Hannah shares highlights from her first meeting with Astralis.