The STEMIE Coalition Launches First National Invention Convention and Entrepreneurship Expo to Provide Launchpad for Young Inventors, Entrepreneurs

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More than 260 students from 15 states to showcase their inventions, business cases at first annual national event, backed by major technology sponsors

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Educators, employers and policymakers agree the U.S. must grow innovative thinkers and problem solvers in order to create a sustainable society,

The STEMIE Coalition today launched The National Invention Convention and Entrepreneurship Expo (NICEE), the first annual nationwide competition for students to display their problem solving and critical thinking skills through products they have invented and companies they have launched. The inaugural event—backed by major technology sponsors including United Technologies Corp. (UTC), Stanley Black & Decker, Brocade Networks, Microsoft, and The Lemelson Foundation—will be held at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) in Alexandria, Virginia, May 19-21, 2016.

The inaugural NICEE event will host 265 K-12 students from around the country demonstrating and discussing the business case for their inventions, ranging from a Braille keyboard that clips onto an iPad so people with sight disabilities can type, to a sports training system built to enhance the ball placement abilities of athletes in any sport, to a device that senses a dog’s stress level and sends appropriate scents and music to help soothe it. The young inventors will be judged and compete for honors on their innovative approaches to solving a problem through invention and prospects for creating viable enterprises in the market.

“Educators, employers and policymakers agree the U.S. must grow innovative thinkers and problem solvers in order to create a sustainable society,” said STEMIE Coalition CEO Danny Briere. “To make this dream a reality, America needs a national K-12 competition in youth invention and entrepreneurship to drive more programs into schools, and to excite and inspire students to invent new solutions to the world’s problems. The National Invention Convention and Entrepreneurship Expo will provide, for the first time, a national platform on which young inventors and entrepreneurs from programs across the country can compete and be recognized for advancements in problem identification, problem-solving, invention and entrepreneurship.”

Indeed, Briere points to a 2015 Milstein Commission report, “Can Startups Save the American Dream?” authored by Steve Case, founder of AOL, and Carly Fiorina, President, Carly Fiorina Enterprises and former Chairman and CEO, Hewlett-Packard, which called for a national entrepreneurial competition to empower the “Next Generation of Entrepreneurial Leaders.” “A vibrant entrepreneurial society is predicated on an awareness of the opportunities entrepreneurship provides, the encouragement to pursue them, and the skills to launch and grow one’s own venture,” the report said. “By creating a national entrepreneurial competition for students at the K-12 level, students will be exposed to entrepreneurial thinking and opportunities before they begin their career path,” the report continued.

A national forum that promotes and rewards inventiveness is a key element to the innovation pipeline. The STEMIE Coalition is supported by more than 30 K-12 youth invention and entrepreneurship programs across the United States rolled up into a national initiative for educating students with basic invention and startup skills. The 2016 NICEE event is sponsored by United Technologies Corp. (UTC), Stanley Black & Decker, Brocade Networks, Microsoft Corp. and The Lemelson Foundation. These backers realize the pressing need to add STEM-educated and invention-skilled youth to their respective workforces.

“At UTC, we are dedicated to inspiring the next generation of scientists, engineers and financial professionals by sparking students’ interest in STEM, invention and entrepreneurship,” said Randy Bumps, senior director, sustainability and corporate responsibility at UTC. “Providing tomorrow’s smartest minds with the preparation and skills they need to develop next-generation technologies is critically important.”

Sponsor Stanley Black & Decker sees NICEE as a vital national version of statewide competitions. “As a company that has a successful legacy of continuous innovation, we look forward to the anticipated growth of the National Invention Convention in partnership with our facilities and employees across the country,” said Timothy Perra, vice president of communications at Stanley Black & Decker. “This expansion will help to increase the dedication to STEM education nationally, fostering our youth and preparing for the next generation workforce.”

About The NICEE
The National Invention Convention and Entrepreneurship Expo (NICEE) is a first-of-its-kind country-wide event to bring together and shine a spotlight on the creations of young inventors, forward thinkers and problem solvers from member local programs throughout the U.S. The inaugural event will be held May 19-21 at the United States Patent Trade Office (USPTO) headquarters in Alexandria, Virginia.

Created by the STEMIE Coalition, The NICEE employs novel judging techniques and peer review in its breadth-and-depth competition to ensure it serves as an intellectually enriching event for all. It’s a launch pad from which student participants can advance their keen interest toward becoming tomorrow’s innovators and world changers. For more information, visit

About The STEMIE Coalition
The STEMIE Coalition is a non-profit, umbrella membership organization of youth invention and entrepreneurship programs across the U.S. It provides much-needed national attention for and drives interest in K-12 invention and entrepreneurship, while empowering local organizations with best practices and resources. The STEMIE Coalition is the first such group created to elevate invention and entrepreneurship education of K-12 students across the country.

The coalition is partnering with STEM and entrepreneurship programs with in-school curriculum and competitions to drive innovation and problem-solving skills into our next generation workforce. The coalition’s goal, with partners such as United Technologies Corp., Stanley Black & Decker, Lemelson Foundation and Brocade Networks, and is to make an extensive, immediate, and measurable impact on youth invention and entrepreneurship in the U.S. For more information, visit

Media Contacts:
Helen Charov
The STEMIE Coalition
(860) 614 6456

Sue O’Keefe
The STEMIE Coalition

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The STEMIE Convention
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