Seven SFU Technovation teams advance to semi-final round of global app competition
Earlier this month when SFU’s Faculty of Applied Sciences hosted the B.C. Regional Pitch Event for the Technovation Challenge, semi-finalists for the senior division category were selected; however, since there were only nine teams competing in the junior division category, the younger teams had to wait until the virtual judging was complete to see if they would advance.
The Technovation Challenge is a global competition in which 10-18 year old girls build an app prototype and business plan to address an issue in their community. At the B.C. Regional Pitch Event, the teams presented their apps to a panel of judges from the local technology and business communities.
It has been a nail-biting few weeks for the junior teams as virtual judging put them in competition with other junior teams from around the world, and lowered their odds of securing a semi-final spot. But the wait was worth it.
Technovation has announced the 2017 semi-finalists, which includes 22 teams from across Canada. Seven of these teams are from the SFU Technovation program: five junior teams along with the two senior teams selected at the pitch event earlier this month.
“I’m so proud of all of the girls who participated in this challenge and presented their apps at the regional pitch event,” says Daniela Abasi, who is the regional ambassador for Technovation, and the manager of outreach programs for SFU’s Faculty of Applied Sciences.
“I was hoping we’d get a few of the junior teams to the semi-finals, but having five of them advance is incredible. These young girls have developed app prototypes that address issues relating to the environment, mental health and nutrition. They will be strong contenders in the next round.”
The semi-final round will be judged online and the results will be announced in mid-June. Finalists will travel to the Global Pitch Event in Silicon Valley in August to compete for the grand prize of $10,000 (junior divison) or $15,000 (senior division).
A complete list of the SFU Technovation teams advancing to the semi-finals is below.
Team: Sugar-Coded (West Vancouver)
App: Raise It!
This app focuses on self-improvement and self-confidence, and navigates users through activities that develop their ability to confidently express themselves.
Team: Team Lauda (Coquitlam)
App: YOUth Under Roof
This app provides support for at-risk youth through such features as a chat function, a map that marks relevant services nearby, a resource list, and emergency contacts.
Team: 3BigTomatoes (Vancouver)
App: ZeroWaste (0 Waste)
This app is a fun and interactive way to learn about sorting waste, and local community waste-collection rules.
Team: Athena Tech (Coquitlam)
This app allows users to anonymously share stories of difficult scenarios they have encountered, to help other users overcome their obstacles. The built-in reporting feature helps eliminate inappropriate content and prevent cyber-bullying.
Team: Cameron Tech Girls (Burnaby)
This game-based app promotes healthy eating in children and teens. Players learn nutrition facts and healthy recipes as they play the game.
Team: Tech Turtles (Burnaby)
App: Wildlife Alert Reporting App (W.A.R.A.)
This app alerts users when wildlife sightings are reported nearby, and provides tips on how to stay safe if they encounter the animal.
Team: Three greens (Vancouver)
App: Dump It Right
This app helps a person decide which waste or recycling bin to use when disposing an item.
About SFU's partnership with Technovation:
Daniela Abasi, manager of outreach programs for SFU’s Faculty of Applied Sciences, became a regional ambassador for Technovation in 2016, and launched the SFU Technovation workshops and events to encourage participation among local girls. Abasi is one of four regional ambassadors across Canada, and the only one in B.C. The 2017 program at SFU was supported by generous contributions from the TELUS Vancouver Community Board, Visier and Safe Software.
Technovation is a technology entrepreneurship program for girls aged 10 to 18. It aims to develop their technology and business skills, and teach them how to apply these skills to real-world problems. Over the 12-week curriculum, participants identify an issue in their community, build an app prototype, develop a business plan and pitch their idea to a panel of judges. Since its inception in 2010, Technovation has reached more than 10,000 girls in 78 countries.