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Gates Invention & Innovation Program

Competition Day

20th Annual Invention & Innovation Expo

2020 Dates

List of 3 items.

  • Invention Expo

    Thursday, March 5, 2020
    1-3 p.m.
    Graland Fieldhouse
  • Finalist Presentations

    Friday, March 6, 2020
    9-11:30 a.m.
    Fries Family Theater

  • Awards

    Friday, March 6, 2020
    2:20 p.m.
    Graland Fieldhouse

Competition Day

At the expo, students are prepared to display and discuss their hard work from start to finish.

List of 3 items.

  • Judging Process

    1. At the expo, judges speak with each inventor to evaluate the entries before selecting 10-15 finalists.
    2. The following day, finalists make individual presentations to the panel of judges using additional support material such as slide presentations to describe their invention and process in more detail.
    3. Judges sequester to determine the contest winners.
    Cash awards up to $500 are given in both the Grades 5/6 and Grades 7/8 categories.
  • Criteria

    All entries are judged on four criteria:
    • Functionality
    • Creativity
    • Marketability
    • Clarity of Communication
  • Patent Support

    In exceptional cases, judges may award a "patent nod" to a particular invention. Those projects receive additional funding for more in-depth research, design and guidance through the patent process.

2020 Competition Finalist & Winners

5/6 Division:

First Place: Safety Cut - Sophie Freyer and Hadlee Wolf
Second Place: Suitcase Aid - Elle Guillot, Cate Whalen
Third Place: Adjust-A-Brush - Hugh Brophy, Nate Romo-Nichols, Josh Wolff
Honorable Mention: Package Box - Andrew Summers and Alex Warot


  • Easy Crutch - Ava Jacobson and Dylan Milo
  • Tip Stick - Oliver Nelson
  • Water Can - Do - Bianca Morris and Anna Wang

7/8 Division:

First Place: Buckle Leash - Kate Hughes and Sophia Johnson
Second Place: Safe Step 2.0 - Charlie May and Sam Weisberg
Third Place: The 3MC - Quentin Labbett and Julian Swett 


  • Itchy Casty - Ryan Mandes and Jackson Turner
  • Briefboxx - Samantha Brenner
  • SOS House Finder 2.0 - Jackson Lieberman, Luca Siringo, and Reid McCarty 

Competition Day Judges

Graland Country Day School

Graland Country Day School is a private school in Denver, Colorado, serving students in preschool, kindergarten, elementary, and middle school. Founded in Denver in 1924, Graland incorporates a rich, experiential learning approach in a traditional classroom setting, emphasizing the development of globally and socially conscious leaders who excel academically.