Entrants may be lured by cash, but they’ll leave with a bigger reward: belief in the power of their ideas.
 
WSU’s new Imagine Tomorrow competition will show hundreds of Washington high school students how their creativity and innovation can make the world a better place.
 
“This is a great opportunity to get teenagers thinking about the big issues of our time,” said M. Grant Norton, associate dean in the College of Engineering and Architecture and a competition organizer.
 
“They will see how they can make a difference.”I urge WSU faculty from every discipline to get involved.”
 
Collaborative energy
This year’s theme, Power Your Future, asks students to find creative solutions to the world’s future energy needs.
 
“For students to succeed in the competition — and their future university education — teamwork is essential,” explained David Bahr, director of undergraduate research. “And collaborating with your friends makes it fun.”
 
“To address global energy needs, we need to combine technological solutions with social ones,” said Craig Parks, psychology professor. “Imagine Tomorrow challenges students to consider ways to influence individual and societal behavior.”
 
The competition particularly encourages interdisciplinary efforts and offers special awards for entries that bridge different disciplines. The best overall ideas win prizes of up to $5,000 for the students and their schools, thanks to the generosity and vision of Imagine Tomorrow sponsors.
 
Volunteers welcome
“This competition shows our future leaders how they can make a positive difference in the world — and rewards them for their great ideas,” said President Elson S. Floyd.
 
The university will host the first competition May 9-11. Faculty are volunteering their expertise to help with planning. Many will serve as judges, alongside business and opinion leaders from throughout the state. Additional volunteers are welcome.
 
One of Time magazine’s “Heroes of the Planet,” Denis Hayes, will deliver the event’s keynote address. Hayes is board chair of the International Earth Day Network, former director of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, and president of the Bullitt Foundation.
 
For more information and to sign up, go ONLINE @ http://imagine.wsu.edu