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Changemaker Challenge Winners Receive Scholarships

Posted: Monday, January 29, 2024

High school students throughout the Tri-State and beyond were awarded significant scholarships on Saturday at the University of Evansville's tenth High School Changemaker Challenge, made possible by Toyota Indiana.

The challenge is designed to motivate young people to take a leading role in identifying and solving challenges in the world through innovation and creativity.

UE has committed more than $1 million in scholarships to winners of this competition since its inception. Those who choose UE as their college destination will each receive four-year scholarships as listed below:

First place winners holding check

1st place: Full tuition

SolarLens: Jacob Barnwell and Elie Duff (New Tech Institute, Evansville, Ind.)

Summary: SolarLens is a solar powered streetlight with a monitored dome camera attached to it. It will all be in one unit and established into the Evansville Promise Neighborhood to help improve the quality of life by saving money on energy and helping lower the crime rate in the city of Evansville.

Second place winners holding check

2nd place: $27,000 per year

UpLift18: Claire Deardorff and Jennifer Vazquez (Signature School, Evansville, Ind.)

Summary: UpLift18 raises awareness about human trafficking by providing education, prevention, student empowerment, and community service opportunities. UpLift18 creates a meaningful impact for students in fighting human trafficking.

Third place winners holding check

3rd place: $23,000 per year

Boomerang Learning: Kris Lau, Abdul-Aleem Mohammed, and Parth Patel (Signature School, Evansville, Ind.)

Summary: Boomerang Learning is program to help students that have had trouble catching up to Indiana standards post COVID and to help students who are falling behind their peers.

On Friday, January 26, a panel of judges heard pitches from the top 20 teams and individual students who had been invited to the in-person competition. From those top 20, six ideas were then chosen for the championship round that took place on Saturday, January 27. During that event, judges awarded first, second, and third place. To learn more about High School Changemaker Challenge please visit

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