Coalinga College Advances to Finals of the National Community College Innovation Challenge

Coalinga College is proud to announce that its Community College Innovation Challenge team has been selected as one of the 12 finalist teams to advance to the final round of the prestigious Community College Innovation Challenge (CCIC). Organized by the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) in partnership with the National Science Foundation (NSF), the CCIC aims to foster entrepreneurial thinking and develop STEM-based solutions among community college students.

The Coalinga College CCIC team, composed entirely of students from the college’s Firebaugh Center, includes Jose Davilla, Bryan Pineda, Adam Ovalles, and Salvador Ovalles.

"We are thrilled to see our students' innovative ideas recognized on a national platform like the CCIC," said Coalinga College's President Carla Tweed.  "This accomplishment reflects our college's commitment to nurturing creativity and problem-solving skills among our students."

Under the leadership of Dr. Ken Henry, Coalinga College Chemistry Instructor, the team presented their unique project titled "Got Calcium: The New Battery Innovation." Their groundbreaking approach focuses on transitioning from lithium to calcium batteries. This move enhances cost-effectiveness, safety, and battery performance and offers an eco-friendly alternative for energy storage solutions.
"Our students have worked tirelessly to develop a solution that addresses real-world challenges in energy storage," said Henry. "Being selected as finalists is a testament to their hard work and ingenuity."

The finalists will embark on a transformative journey in June, participating in an Innovation Boot Camp. This immersive experience, unique in its caliber, will provide them with invaluable insights from experts in business planning, stakeholder engagement, and strategic communication. The Boot Camp will culminate in a Student Innovation Poster Session on Capitol Hill, an unparalleled opportunity for teams to pitch their ideas to STEM leaders and congressional stakeholders and to make a lasting impact on the future of innovation.

"The 2024 CCIC finalists represent diverse STEM solutions, including clean water, renewable energy, healthcare, and assistive technology devices," said Tweed. "Coalinga College is honored to be among these innovative teams and looks forward to showcasing its solution nationally."

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