March 2nd, 2020

March 2nd, 2020 – Celebrating High School Innovators 

Dear Team Innovation,

We look forward to meeting you at the final competition of Celebrating High School Innovators at Illinois State University in Normal, IL. The competition will be held in the Bone Student Center Brown Ballroom. (200 N University St, Normal, IL 61761)

There will be two rounds of judging at this event. The first is the Innovation Showcase, where innovation displays will be visited by a group of judges. Students should be ready to explain their innovation over a 10-minute interview. This round will determine who will advance to the top 10 competition in the afternoon. The top 10 competition will be “Shark Tank”-style, with a 3-minute presentation and up to 5-minute Q&A. 

Below you will find detailed information for your trip, as well as competition guidelines. 

Event Schedule

7:30-8:30 am Arrival and display set-up (see display guidelines below)

8:30-9:00 am Welcome

9:00-11:15 am Innovation Showcase Judging

11:15 – 11:30 Display teardown

11:30 AM – 12:00 PM Lunch 

Lunch will be provided for all CHSI participants, CHSI educators / sponsors, and specially invited guests. Parents or other guests will be on their own for lunch.

12:00 – 12:15 PM TOP 10 TEAMS ANNOUNCED




2:10 – 2:30 PM Awards Ceremony


Parking is available exclusively in the Bone Student Center Lot off of Locust St. Parking is $1/hr. Activity busses are able to fit in the lot.  Parking in any other lot will result in a ticket/tow. 


Lunch will be provided for all CHSI participants, CHSI educators / sponsors, and specially invited guests. Parents or other guests will be on their own for lunch.

Student Waiver / Permission Form

We will need to have the signed student waiver and permission forms prior to the start of the competition.  

Innovation Showcase Display Guidelines

Each innovation will be provided a 2ft x 4ft size table for displaying materials. While an elaborate display is not essential, you do want to share information or examples of your innovative idea. Please email Blake Whittle at [email protected] by 2-25-20 if you need any electricity near your table.

Top 10 Preparation

In the event your team is selected for the Top 10, you must be prepared to give a three-minute presentation, If you have a PowerPoint or Google Slides to accompany your presentation, please have your presentation uploaded to a flash drive to be downloaded to a PC. The three-minute presentation will then be followed by up to five minutes for judges’ Q&A. We encourage you to practice your presentation to ensure it flows well and you meet the time limit. 

All innovations will be judged with the following criteria:

    • Originality: How new is the idea?
    • Innovation: How clever is the idea?
    • Utility: How useful or marketable is the idea?
    • Potential: How likely is your idea to grow in impact or consequence?
    • Consequence: Will the idea make a difference in lives?
    • Practicality: Can the idea be brought to fruition as presented?
    • Sustainability: Both financial (can the idea generate enough revenue?) and environmental (is the idea a good steward of our planet’s resources?)
    • Presentation use of technology: Are you using technology in your presentation?
    • Presentation Professionalism: Are you poised and professional?

Illinois State University & CHSI look forward to seeing you soon!

Only the CHSI Winners from the poster session judging (not Honorable Mention Awardees) will present at the Innovation Showcase. 

For Honorable Mention Awardees/parents/guests: You may spend as much time as you like exploring the presentations at the Innovation Showcase. 


Paul Ritter – 815-848-5304 (Cell)


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