April 11, 2018

Contact: Beth Stefanik, Director of Communications
434.296.5106 (o) | 434.282.4371 (c) | bstefanik@stab.org

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St. Anne's-Belfield School Students Win Tom Tom Youth Summit Honors

Charlottesville, Va., April 11, 2018 - Three St. Anne's-Belfield School students have received first place honors at the Tom Tom Festival's third annual Youth Summit Business Pitch Challenge. Shawn Liu '19, William Du '19, and Henry Deal '18 presented Project Mind Trigger, a home automation integrated system.

 

"For our prototype, we designed an app and also did hardware engineering to test out our result," said Du. "Mind Trigger improves current motion-sensing switches by introducing room occupancy detection, which provides supportive data for lighting and heating systems, and other appliances, to act more efficiently."

 

Along with a combined Tandem Friends and Monticello High School team, Art for the Heart, the group was selected by the i.Lab at the University of Virginia to receive preferred spots in its Incubator program. Cash prizes and mentorships were also awarded to those competing.

 

"Watching today's teenagers present plans to make a real impact on their communities is always so impressive to me, and something we place tremendous value on teaching at St. Anne's-Belfield," said Peter Quagliaroli, head of the Upper School. 

 

"All of the students involved in the Business Pitch Competition have found ways to combine entrepreneurial thinking with a recognized need, and to my mind that makes them all winners. I am so proud of the way the Mind Trigger project has developed, and very gratified to see all of the creative thinking, hard work, and perseverance that went into it recognized on this scale."

 

School students also participated in the Social Innovation Challenge. Project "I"wareness was presented by Victor Ji '19 and Douglas Brooks '19, while William Du '19 and Jenna Jokl '20, presented as part of Red Velvet along with teammates from Western Albemarle High School, Albemarle High School, and William Monroe High School. This multi-school team came together at the 2018 SPARK! Hackathon hosted by St. Anne's-Belfield School in January.

 

This year's students are the latest in the School's annual participation in the Tom Tom Festival. In 2017, four students won the Youth Summit Business Pitch Challenge for ProcrastinApp, a novel application for mobile devices that links with school-based software to help students stay on top of their homework and assignments. In 2016, two students won the Crowdfunded Pitch Night with Seniors Connect, a business to provide tech support to senior citizens.

 

Special thanks to the Tom Tom Founders Festival for once again providing this opportunity. 

 

Photo courtesy of Kim Wilkens.

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St. Anne's-Belfield School is a co-educational preschool through grade 12 day school of more than 940 students and 150 faculty and staff, with a boarding program in grades nine through twelve. Nineteen countries are represented in the student body, with 41 percent of students receiving financial aid. More information may be found at www.stab.org

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