Online voting begins Monday for competition

Feb. 02, 2013 @ 10:34 AM

A public vote beginning Feb. 4 and continuing through Feb. 11 will decide whether five students in Jeff Arthurs’ honors engineering class at Northern Vance High School win N.C. State University’s Emerging Issues Prize for Innovation.

The contest challenges student across the state to unleash their imagination and work collaboratively to create an innovative product or tool that may benefit their classmates, neighbors or group within the community.

Sirocco, their computer cleaning invention, was designed to dislodge dust from a computer’s critical functioning parts. Its goal is to lower computer malfunction rates while also saving money typically spent on computer repair.

The production and development of Sirocco was a work of passion for the students. It could prove to be a true prize possession, with a $5,000 reward going to the contest winner for further product promotion.

Since discovering they were chosen as one of five high school finalists in the state, the students have been actively rallying the support of their community.

Sirocco started as a 3D image developed on a computer program called Solid-works.

In January the students marched ahead of other competitors, developing a prototype with the help of Bob Esquivel, owner and operator at Salare Inc. of Henderson, where a variety of laboratory equipment and custom products are manufactured.

Students involved in the project include Justin Care, Dylan Grissom, Amber Stevenson, Ray Cheever and Nick Sharpe.

To vote for the students and their invention visit http://www.ncsu.edu/iei beginning Monday.

Contact the writer at amauser@hendersondispatch.com.