Trailblazing Young Innovators Announced for NFTE World Series of Innovation, Presented by Microsoft Teen Winners from Silver Spring, MD, Coral Gables and Miami, FL., Hartford and Stamford, CT, Chicago, IL, and Oakland, CA, Awarded Over $40,000 in Cash and Prizes for New Product Ideas

NEW YORK, Nov. 20, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- As Global Entrepreneurship Week comes to a close, a bevy of trailblazing young innovators emerge. The Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE), an international non-profit organization dedicated to inspiring young people from at-risk communities to stay in school and to recognize business opportunities, today announced the winners of the 2012 World Series of Innovation, presented by Microsoft.  The competition challenged teams of students worldwide to devise innovative products and services that address everyday opportunities in six categories.  Categories included "Tablet/Smartphone Game Design," "Tablet / Smartphone App Design," "Dairy Based Beverage," "New Franchise Idea," "Innovative Fashion Marketing" and finally by NFTE in support of the First Lady's "Let's Move!" program: "Fresh Take On Fitness."  With over 750 individual entries, three finalists were chosen.  Judges from the sponsoring organization selected one winning team from each category for the Adjudicator's Choice. In addition the general public with thousands of online votes cast awarded one team from each category for the People's Choice.   Winners include:

"Tablet/Smartphone Game Design" and Tablet/Smartphone App Design" categories, both sponsored Microsoft:
ADJUDICATOR'S CHOICE: Where's My Bus, Springbrook High School, Silver Spring, MD  
PEOPLE'S CHOICE: Fantasy Academia
, Springbrook High School, Silver Spring, MD
ADJUDICATOR'S & PEOPLE'S CHOICE:
 Envision, Springbrook High School, Silver Spring, MD 

"Dairy Based Beverage" category, sponsored by The Coca-Cola Company; Venture and Emerging Brands
ADJUDICATOR'S CHOICE: Tropicoco, Pathways Academy of Technology & Design, Hartford, CT
PEOPLE'S CHOICE Tapi-Pops, Lighthouse Community Charter School, Oakland, CA 

"New Franchise Idea" category, sponsored by Franchise Source Brands International:
ADJUDICATOR'S CHOICE:
 Hi-Tide Meltdown, Miami Beach Senior High School, Miami Beach, FL
PEOPLE'S CHOICE: Seven Seasonings, Academy of Information Technology & Engineering, Stamford, CT

"Innovative Fashion Marketing" category, sponsored by Sean John:
ADJUDICATOR'S CHOICE:  Furie, Whitney M. Young Magnet High School, Chicago, IL 
PEOPLE'S CHOICE: Virtual Closet, Lighthouse Community Charter School, Oakland, CA 

"Fresh Take On Fitness" category, issued by NFTE in support of the First Lady's "Let's Move" program:
ADJUDICATOR'S CHOICE:  GoBanz, Academy of Information Technology & Engineering, Stamford, CT   
PEOPLE'S CHOICE: WePlay, Coral Gables Senior High School, Coral Gables, FL   

"We are proud to extend NFTE's message of the power of entrepreneurship education and the importance of innovation by challenging and awarding these extraordinary winners," said Amy Rosen, President and CEO of NFTE.  "We look forward to possibly seeing these exciting businesses come to life, and to providing ongoing encouragement to young people around the globe to pursue the endless entrepreneurial opportunities that lie ahead."

The competition, a featured event for the 2012 Global Entrepreneurship Week (Nov. 12-18), featured groups of two or more students competing in up to six innovation challenges by creating a new, unique or innovative product or service to address that market niche. Teams showcased how their product or service will impact people's daily lives and how they will market their innovations.  Submissions consisted of a description of their entry, a marketing pitch for the product or service, a customer profile and a 60-second commercial.

NFTE was proud to have Microsoft as the presenting sponsor of the World Series of Innovation and sponsor of the "Mobile Game" and "Mobile App" design categories, challenging students to create tablet/smartphone apps and games that raise awareness and provide solutions for common student and school issues.  Microsoft will also explore the option to connect the winning teams with a development partner to take the idea and bring it to market.

The students in each winning team receive a total grant of $2,000 from the sponsors and NFTE plus $500 for their school or youth serving organization as well as a Microsoft Xbox Kinect bundle.  The students of each winning team also received prize packages from their categories' sponsors, such as a mobile device from Microsoft and gift cards from Coca-Cola and Amazon, and merchandise from Sean John.

For more information, visit http://innovation.nfte.com/

About the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship
Too many young people today drop out of school and struggle to break the cycle of poverty. Since 1987, the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE) has been inspiring young people to pursue educational opportunities, start their own businesses, and succeed in life. By providing entrepreneurship education programs relevant to the real world, NFTE empowers students to own their educations in and out of the classroom and to find their own path to success. Hundreds of thousands of students have discovered opportunity all around them through entrepreneurship via thousands of certified educators worldwide. NFTE supports active programs in 18 states and 11 countries around the world. Entrepreneurs are a powerful driver of economic growth and NFTE sows the seeds of innovation in students worldwide. For more information, visit www.nfte.com.

CONTACT: Alyssa Miller, +1-973-615-1292, alyssa.miller@nfte.com

SOURCE Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship



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