Samsung Awards Schools $100K for Using STEM to Tackle School Shootings, Pedestrian Fatalities and Healthcare Access

Samsung Electronics America, Inc. announced today the three grand prize national winners in the ninth annual $2 million* Samsung Solve for Tomorrow Contest – a national competition that challenges public school students in grades 6 through 12 to use STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) skills to address real-world problems.

Owensville High School in Owensville, Mo.; Holly Grove Middle School in Holly Springs, N.C.; and Deep Creek Middle School in Chesapeake, Va.were named the three national winners for their respective efforts to confront school shootings, pedestrian fatalities and healthcare access using STEM. The winners were announced today after students presented their projects to a panel of judges at the National Finalist Pitch Event this week in New York City.  Each school will receive $100,000* in technology and classroom supplies to meet the needs of their students such as Samsung Flips, Samsung Chromebooks, 3-D printers, tablets, microscopes, lab materials, and more.

The national winners and their STEM projects are:

Owensville High School – Owensville, Mo.

With school shootings on the rise, students at Owensville High School designed a simple and secure door lock to help keep students and teachers safe in the event of an armed intruder. Because traditional door locks can be quickly dismantled by a firearm, Owensville High students designed, modeled and created a steel lock that cannot be easily disengaged from outside of the classroom. Once installed on the interior of a door, the one-piece lock can be easily and quickly put into place to prevent an intruder from entering and attacking students and teachers.

View Owensville High School’s project video here: 

Holly Grove Middle School – Holly Springs, N.C. 

Nationally, 88 percent of school bus drivers have reported cars illegally passing stopped school buses, causing student injuries and fatalities every year. In North Carolina alone, there are approximately 300 illegal passes reported each day. After a classmate was almost hit by a car, students at Holly Grove Middle School were inspired to take action. Research and consultation with transportation officials told them that traditional bus stop signs were not working. So, the students created a Smart School Bus Stop Sign and bus sensor to alert drivers of an approaching bus before it even arrives. Approximately 400 feet before reaching the stop, the Smart Stop Sign will change colors, indicating to drivers that they must slow down and stop. The students’ invention was so successful in testing that they’re working with city officials to install Smart Stop Signs at the locations where the most violations have occurred.

Holly Grove Middle School was also named this year’s Community Choice Winner for generating the most public votes online. As the Community Choice Winner, the students have won an additional $10,000* in technology for their school.

View Holly Grove Middle School’s project video here:

Deep Creek Middle School – Chesapeake, Va.

Studies show 25 percent of American school-aged children have undiagnosed eye problems, which can impact learning and ultimately their academic success. Many of these students continue to go undiagnosed due to the high cost of vision exams and prescription eyeglasses. The students at Deep Creek Middle School developed a mobile app and website to match their fellow students with poor visions with free exams and donated prescription eye glasses. Since launching their app, every student at Deep Creek Middle School who needs glasses has received them or soon will receive them, and the students are working to expand the service to other local schools.

View Deep Creek Middle School’s project video here:

The three national winners will be honored at a luncheon in Washington, D.C. the first week of May and will also have the opportunity to meet with and present their projects to their respective congressional representatives.

To learn more about the contest and this year’s winners, visit: