SHI Blog

Think. Create. Innovate.

Can you prototype laughter? We can!

Spectrum Health Innovations (SHI) was able to participate in the Teen Entrepreneurship Summer Academy (TESA) this year. “We participate in several community events and activities each year. This one is one of my favorites and I look forward to it every year. What the students come up with in one week is truly amazing.” Says Lori Henry.

Spectrum Health Innovations (SHI) offers the ideal space for ideating – that is exactly why 46 students from area high schools such as Rockford, Forest Hills Northern, Forest Hills Central, Forest Hills EasternInnovation Central, Black River, Hastings, Hudsonville Middle School, Saranac Community, City High, East Grand Rapids, Grandville,  West Michigan Aviation Academy, Godwin Heights, Hinsdale Central, East Kentwood, Grand Haven, The Potter’s House, University Prep, Grand River Prep, and homeschool came to the innovations space at 50 Louis Street on June 20th to kick off TESA.

(Students prototyping ‘laughter’ at the innovations space)

The SHI group presented an overview of the innovations department and provided examples of some of the innovations and current projects being worked on. The key message being communicated during this time was the importance of teamwork.

The students were challenged with protyping ‘laughter’ using only pipe cleaners, play dough, cups, and tooth picks. A light hearted yet challenging task.

The SHI group judged the various student teams on their ability to work together as a team, illustrating respect and sincere interest in each other’s ideas. After much deliberation the winner was chosen; the roller coaster prototype. The student on this particular team was able to incorporate the ideas from those that love roller coasters as well as those that hate them. During their presentation they described it as, “Everyone laughs on a roller coaster, even if you have anxiety at the beginning, you end up laughing at the finish”.

(The winning team)

After a session of prototyping to get their creativity flowing, the students went to work on their final project. As an expert in innovation and ideation, SHI was happy to help the students with any questions around their ideas.

The theme this year was urban development and revitalization. Students were tasked with finding opportunities within Grand Rapids that revolved around this theme.

On June 23rd, the students concluded the week with a pitch of their idea to a panel of judges and family members. The panel of judges included professionals from Amway, Start Garden, Datacomp, and the Dehayes Group. All eight teams presented and did an outstanding job! Three out of the eight teams even took home prize money totaling $5,000.

The winning teams have yet to be announced.

To learn more about how SHI is involved in the community and outcomes read our in-the-news section.

About TESA
The GVSU Teen Entrepreneurship Summer Academy (TESA) at the Richard M. and Helen DeVos Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation at the Seidman College of Business is a community based entrepreneurial activity focused on growing the awareness and possibility of small business opportunities in West Michigan. It is an exceptional opportunity for students in grades nine through twelve to interact on a college campus, work with college faculty, and current GVSU students while learning about the struggles and successes of local young entrepreneurs. The students are presented with a different challenge or theme, and they need to come up with a new product concept or service and present it to a panel of judges by the end of the week. The program teaches students fundamental business concepts and essential entrepreneurship skills through hands-on, highly interactive, and creative workshops.

written by Felicia Rowley