San Antonio Launches First Ever Youth Invention Showcase

February 28, 2020

Over 70 Students to Display Inventions
as Part of a Global STEM Ecosystem Conference
of almost 500 Leaders

February 28, 2020 – The fields of invention, youth education, entrepreneurship and workforce development will soon put the spotlight on San Antonio when almost 500 STEM leaders in K-12, nonprofit, business, government and industry from around the globe convene to help foster ideas for new educational and workforce development initiatives in the city and beyond.

On March 2, 76 students from local San Antonio schools will showcase their inventions as part of the first ever San Antonio Invention Convention. The event, taking place at the San Antonio Museum of Science and Technology, SAMSAT, will be presented by The Henry Ford’s Invention Convention Worldwide initiative as part of the opening evening reception of the STEM Learning Ecosystems Community of Practice Convening, SLECoP, a three day conference that allows diverse leaders to share lessons learned and best practices in developing STEM competent citizens.

The Henry Ford’s invention Convention Worldwide initiative hopes that ecosystems will be inspired by the event and consider adopting similar models within their own communities.

The San Antonio Invention Convention initiative is being led by the Alamo STEM Ecosystem, a Bexar, TX county-wide coalition of K-12 educators, local corporations, government and community based organizations intent on growing the number of STEM-interested students and developing the local workforce in San Antonio.

The Alamo STEM Ecosystem is co-hosting the SLECoP with Mexico City’s STEM Ecosystem, Movimiento STEM. The Convening will spotlight a new education paradigm called Invention Education which encourages problem identification, experimentation, collaboration, critical thinking, and hands-on engagement to inspire and equip students to solve real-world challenges, and prepare them for an ever-changing future.

Key supporters of this convening include The Lemelson Foundation, Broadcom Foundation and Qualcomm, along with the SLECoP’s founding funder, the Samueli Foundation.

“In San Antonio, we value the importance of invention education as a way of giving students an opportunity to apply STEM and design skills to solve real challenges by including prototypes of their inventions,” said Dr. Raul “Rudy” A. Reyna, Lead for the Alamo STEM Ecosystem and a member of the Board of Trustees for SAMSAT. “A partnership with Invention Convention Worldwide provides an exciting next step for our students to deepen their current science, technology, engineering and math work in the classroom, and to discover new opportunities to apply their skills.”

“Additionally, in conjunction with the STEM Ecosystem Community of Practice Convening coming to town, and generously hosting their opening reception at the San Antonio Museum of Science and Technology, San Antonio will continue to advance its work towards developing the next generation workforce in our communities,” Reyna added.

The Invention Convention Worldwide community teaches students to identify a problem in their lives, or that of their families, and invent a solution utilizing an engineering and design cycle curriculum that is taught in the schools as part of their STEMIE (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math, plus Invention and Entrepreneurship) curriculum.

This is the first time this in-school program has launched in San Antonio. Invention Convention Worldwide, a coalition of invention education interests globally, worked with the Alamo STEM Ecosystem to train local teachers in how to teach invention and entrepreneurship to young students, and is awarding the top young inventors in San Antonio with an all-expenses paid trip to the Invention Convention U.S. Nationals competition in June at The Henry Ford in Dearborn, MI.

The Invention Convention Worldwide program operates formal programs across the U.S. and in 10 countries globally, with over 120,000 elementary through high school students taking part each year. In San Antonio, the pilot program will involve two schools, Price Elementary and CAST STEM High School.

“This is an exciting opportunity for both the public and STEM experts to experience first-hand the power of invention education – all students should be being trained in the life-long skills of invention, innovation and entrepreneurship,” says Danny Briere, Chief Entrepreneur Officer and Global Director of Invention Convention Worldwide. “So many of these students will enter the workforce only to find that the jobs landscape has changed since they started their K-12 career. Having an innovative mindset and being a trained problem-solver will never go out of style and prepare them for any job in the future.”

“With Invention Convention, our goal is to inspire students around the world to be next generation problem solvers, regardless of backgrounds and barriers,” said Patricia Mooradian, president & CEO, The Henry Ford. “We are honored to partner with the San Antonio Museum of Science and Technology in order to bring the program to this community for the first time, especially during the same time thought leaders are gathered to discuss the importance of STEM education.”

More information about the National Invention Convention is available at www.inventionconvention.org.