2019 High School Finalist Teams

Copley High School
Partner Organization: Weaver ProPak
Project: Sorting Solutions So Everyone Can Work

The Copley Lady Engineers Plus Two team from Copley High School in Ohio partnered with Weaver ProPak to create a system of devices called the Sort-A-Screw (SAS). Prior to the development of the SAS, only 4 out of 26 employees could work the sorting and kitting process, which involves sorting and bagging nuts, bolts, screws and washers. The SAS features a multipart system that is easy to use, includes a quality control device that eliminates the need to recheck all packages, and accommodates interchangeable sorting plates for different kitting requirements. In addition to simplifying the process, the SAS has substantially decreased the amount of time required for kit assembly and quality control checks. More importantly, it has made the sorting and kitting process accessible to all Weaver ProPak employees.

Diamond Bar High School
Partner Organization: Opportunity Village
Project: A "Turn for a Change" Leads to a Change for the Better

The Diamond Bar High School team partnered with Opportunity Village, a nonprofit organization in Southern Nevada that serves adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Many of the employees at Opportunity Village are involved in the process of cleaning remote controls and wrapping cables, and the Diamond Bar team set the goal of increasing employee efficiency, productivity and comfort when engaging in these tasks. The team’s final design, called "Turn for a Change," consists of three devices: two for cleaning remotes and one motorized wrapping device to wrap cable cords. The three devices enable users to wrap cables and clean remotes more easily, and since using these devices, employees at Opportunity Village have demonstrated a decrease in the time needed to complete each task and an increase in ease of use and comfort while doing so.

Marquette Catholic High School
Partner Organization: Challenge Unlimited Inc.
Project: Eliminating Errors and Increasing Employee Satisfaction

The MCHS Blue Crew Engineering team collaborated with Challenge Unlimited Inc., a nonprofit organization in Alton, Illinois, that is dedicated to providing opportunities for individuals with disabilities. To improve the speed and accuracy of Challenge Unlimited’s employees when packing boxes of shotgun shells, the MCHS Blue Crew Engineering team created a device called the Shell Shover. The Shell Shover is color-coded and has holes of differing sizes to help employees place shells properly into the device, and in turn, pack them correctly into the box. Employees that used the device increased their speed at carrying out the process and eliminated nearly every error.

Poolesville High School, Team A&M Co.
Partner Organization: That's a Wrap
Project: A Hands-Free App Provides the Recipe for Success

The A&M Co. team of Poolesville High School created a software application called "RecipEasy" to assist kitchen employees at That's a Wrap deli in Gaithersburg, Maryland. That's a Wrap employs people with developmental disabilities and provides a number of menu offerings to customers. RecipEasy helps employees follow the steps for successfully preparing recipes, and because it is camera-activated and hands-free when necessary, employees can maintain the sanitary standards required. Using RecipEasy in That's a Wrap's kitchen has reduced the amount of employee assistance needed by half and led to increased employee confidence.

Poolesville High School, Team SIC
Partner Organization: Furnace Hills Coffee
Project: Brewing Up Workplace Solutions

The team SIC from Poolesville High School partnered with Furnace Hills Coffee in Westminster, Maryland. Furnace Hills Coffee is committed to hiring people with developmental disabilities, and the Poolesville High School team was tasked with developing a device to help employees more accurately and quickly measure one pound of coffee beans. To meet this challenge, the Poolesville High School team created a device called the Coffee Cube. Sitting atop a scale, the Coffee Cube measures the coffee by weight and dispenses one pound of beans directly into a bag. The Coffee Cube has decreased the time it takes employees to weigh and bag coffee beans by approximately 90 percent, substantially increasing efficiency and productivity. It has also increased employee independence and job satisfaction, helping Furnace Hills Coffee deliver on its promise of "Special Coffee Roasted by Special People."

Honorable Mentions

Team 1848
Project: "Humangineers" Independent Project

Team 1812
Project: "Auxilium Inc." Poolesville High School

Team 1805
Project: "Remaking Growth" Poolesville High School

Team 1817
Project: "The Triad High School EDD Engineers" Triad High School