NAI Conference to Engage Next Generation Innovators

Tampa, FL – June 11, 2024

The National Academy of Inventor’s 13th Annual Conference will be coming to Raleigh, North Carolina next week, June 16-18th. The Academy’s Annual Conference brings together the greatest minds in innovation to share their insights and research, addressing some of the most pressing matters in innovation and for society at large. 

This year’s conference includes some exciting new expansions, including special events hosted by NAI partners and inaugural awards recognizing next generation inventors. 

The event will kick off with a special welcome reception held at NC State University, the host of this year’s Annual Conference. The reception will include remarks from President of the National Academy of Inventors Paul R. Sanberg, Chancellor of NC State Randy Woodson, and representatives from the USPTO. 

The Student Showcase, which identifies and celebrates exceptional K-12 and university inventors and is held annually at the conference, has expanded this year to include the new Genspiration Prize and Member’s Choice Award. 

The Genspiration Prize, made possible by the Genspiration Foundation, honors student inventors or teams whose innovations demonstrate significant potential for positive societal impact. The Prize will be awarded at the K-12 and university levels with the Showcase’s first ever cash prize. This year’s finalists include students from the California Invention Convention, Community School of Naples, Florida, Connecticut Invention Convention, University of Pittsburgh, University of Houston, and Penn State University. 

“We have a phenomenal group of students competing in the Student Showcase this year, highlighting a truly exceptional calibur of innovation happening among next generation inventors,” said Paul R. Sanberg, President of NAI. “Being a finalist for the Genspiration Prize is already an honor itself, and we look forward to seeing what these young inventors accomplish.”

The Member’s Choice Award, made possible by the Florida High Tech Corridor, will be chosen by the Academy’s members and will recognize an individual student or team showcasing excellence in student invention. Both the Genspiration Award and Member’s Choice Award recipients will be announced at the conference’s gala event.

Along with bolstering next generation innovators through the Student Showcase, the Annual Conference will also feature a series of hands-on activities for K-12 students and their caretakers hosted by the Smithsonian’s Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation. The interactive invention challenges, which encourage exploration of students’ inventive identity, are based on the Center’s new exhibit “Change Your Game/Cambia tu juego”. The experience will bring together learners and educators to engage them in the intersection between innovation and play.

“It has been a pleasure to see our Annual Conference expand and evolve year over year,” said Sanberg. “The state of innovation and invention is, by its very nature, always growing and changing and our conference has grown to reflect that. It provides a unique forum for innovators around the globe to gather, share their insights, and celebrate each other as they tackle the biggest challenges facing our world today.”

To view the full conference agenda, click here.