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Posted: Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Changemaker Challenge Winners Receive Full Tuition to UE

High school students throughout the tri-state were awarded significant scholarships yesterday at the University of Evansville's seventh annual High School Changemaker Challenge, sponsored by Toyota Indiana.

The challenge, which is supported by the UE Center for Innovation and Change, is designed to motivate young people to take a leading role in identifying and solving challenges in the world around them through innovation and creativity.

UE has committed more than $1 million in scholarships to winners of this competition since its inception. Those who choose UE as their college destination will each receive 4-year scholarships as listed below:

Kerry Ah and Naina Muvva

1st place team: Full tuition
Kerry Ao and Naina Muvva
Signature School (Evansville, IN)
Intertwined Financial Literacy - An online, interactive simulator used in schools to enhance students' understanding of finance through portfolios, stocks, and more

Neva Verbik

2nd place team: $23,000 per year
Neva Verbik
Avon High School (Avon, IN)
Uptown Gardens - Addresses solutions to the constant issues of pollution, increasingly less space for plants to grow, and global warming

Jack Deig

3rd place team: $18,000 per year
Jack Deig
Castle High School (Newburgh, IN)
The Hydration Station - Easily accessible water dispensing units placed throughout Evansville for a healthier, more hydrated community

The January 25 event included pitches from the top 20 teams or individuals who were invited to the in-person competition. Six ideas were then chosen for the championship round, from which judges awarded first, second, and third place. The remaining students who placed in the top six included:

Tyler Myers
Evansville Day School (Evansville, IN)
Driving for Change, Sensory Inclusion - helping individuals with special needs by partnering with local agencies and offering sensory-friendly locations and items

Faith Field
Edgewood High School (Ellettsville, IN)
Restore and Rebuild - a nonprofit organization which would provide housing for the homeless population of Indiana and inspire them to find work they enjoy

Zeke Grant
Perry Central High School (Leopold, IN)
Additive Affordable Prosthetics - prosthetics and biological augmentations that have full range of motion and are truly affordable

Projects from previous competitions can be found throughout the city of Evansville, including the Upgrade Bike Share stations and the solar-powered CommuniTree at Mickey's Kingdom Park downtown. The Toyota Trinity Stormwater Park, which will be developed in 2022, also stemmed from a previous competitor.

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