The Seventh Annual CIJE Innovation Day took place on May 19, at the historical Bell Works, Holmdel, New Jersey. This event was the culmination of a year of diligence and perseverance on the part of close to 1500 young innovators and visionaries, representing 44 schools from Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland and Texas. The annual CIJE Innovation Day provides an exciting time for students to present the capstone projects which they created, designed and engineered in the areas of innovation in: SCIENTIFIC ENGINEERING, ELDERCARE, ARTS, ECO-INNOVATION, HEALTHCARE AND ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY, and CONSUMER PRODUCTS.
There was an exciting and palpable energy in the vast atrium of Bell Works. Students proudly exhibited their projects and enthusiastically discussed the value of their “inventions”. Students came to Innovation Day prepared with comprehensive business plans and pitches.
CLEAR WATER HARVESTING, designed by a group of HAFTR students, addressed the lack of access of potable water. This invention preserves and purifies rainwater, utilizing Arduino sensors to a condensation system that is connected to a water filter. A group of MAAYANOT HS students addressed the fundamental need to create an accessible Hebrew language program for the blind through their POKEACH IVRIT project. This Arduino based system uses Braille and servo motors that move in real time for expression of a tactile word or letter, which is connected to a sound shield that plays the audio version of the word or letter.
Bracha Erblich, a veteran CIJE-Tech Instructor at Bruriah High School commented, “As always, CIJE Innovation Day was an outstanding experience for my students and, along with the capstone projects, was the highlight of their year. The teacher training, supplies, ideas and mentors provided by CIJE have fueled creativity that drive not only the individual students in our CIJE-tech classes, but also the school at large.”
At Innovation Day, one very excited student commented, “It is such an amazing experience to work together with my team and invent something new that can be produced and used in the real world to help people who are have disablilities.”
For over a decade, CIJE, the Center for Initiatives in Jewish Education, has fostered innovation in Jewish schools throughout the United States. CIJE HS students create understandings that turn into prototypes that portray and help our world in new and beneficial ways. At Innovation Day, students show their passion for learning about the world and turning their knowledge into breakthroughs which will make the world a better place and introducing innovations and changes to things that already exist. It is a way of observing what is and, then, imagining and designing a new and improved way of doing it.
The Center for Initiatives for Initiatives in Jewish Education is a non-profit 501C3 organization that, amongst other programs, provides STEM resources to schools that implement CIJE courses and expose students to multiple STEM problem solving perspectives and hands on technical skills. The classroom teacher, with the ongoing partnership and collaboration of the CIJE mentor, helps the students to gain the intellectual skills needed to develop autonomous decision-making abilities. The CIJE-Tech students focus on process, research, and development and gains the skills needed for future success.
The following awards were presented at the event:
The CIJE Award for Excellence in Eco-Innovation
1st The Clear Rainwater harvesting - HAFTR
2nd Boiler Bot - Ilan HS
3rd Automeal - YUHSG (MTA)
The DentServ Award for Innovation in Healthcare and Assistive Technology
1st Fee Bot - Rae Kushner Yeshiva HS
2nd AS (text) L – YUHSG (Central)
3rd E Band - Solomon Schechter Westchester
RoboKiller Award for Innovation in Consumer Products
1st Flour Power - Bais Yaakov of Waterbury
2nd JDawg - Rae Kushner Yeshiva HS
3rd Self-Parking Car - DRS
East Brooklyn Labs Award for Technology Innovation in the Arts
1st Pokeach Ivrit - Maayanot
2nd Automatic Guitar Tuner - Golda Och Academy
3rd Grogger - YUHSG (Central)
Sephardic Home for the Aged Foundation Award for Advancement in Elder Care
1st Flex It! - Ma’ayanot
2nd STS Sound to Sight System - Yeshiva Darche Eres
3rd Track and Kick Back - The Frisch School
Dr Lynne B Harrison Award for Innovation in Scientific Engineering
1st The Subway Sorter – Bruriah
2nd A.L.E.R.T. – Advanced Location-Evacuation-Response-Technology - Bruriah
3rd Urine in Good Hands - The Frisch School
Award for Innovation in Engineering Technion – Israel Institute of Technology
1st Breakable Drip Skates – JEC
2nd Zoom – The Frisch School
3rd Time is Up - Mesivta Zichron Baruch of Clifton
The Yeshiva University Student Choice Award
1st The Chicken Feeder - Bi-Cultural High School
2nd Blind Dog Collar - HAFTR
3rd Parker Pointer - Shevach