WENATCHEE — NCW Tech Alliance has expanded their Summer Social Scholarship Fundraiser to now include a golf tournament and dinner on Aug. 5 at Highlander Golf Course.

The Summer Social raises money for STEM scholarships to be awarded to students and teachers across the region during the 20th annual Innovator Awards Luncheon scheduled for Sept. 29 at the Wenatchee Convention Center.

The golf tournament will start at 12:30 p.m. on Aug. 5, followed by a buffet dinner at 5 p.m with a no-host bar, live music, networking, games and more.

Tickets are on-sale now with $10 of every dinner ticket sold going directly towards STEM Scholarships. To purchase tickets and for more information, visit www.ncwtech.org.

The Summer Social Scholarship Fundraiser is sponsored by Sabey Data Centers, GTC Technical Support, Atlas Fare, Washington Trust Bank, JBe Marketing, Banner Bank Commercial, Equilus Capital Partners, and People’s Bank.

In addition, NCW Tech is seeking nominations for innovators across North Central Washington in the following award categories:

  • Entrepreneur of the Year
  • Newcomer In Technology
  • STEM Champion of the Year
  • STEM College Student Leader of the Year
  • Future Technology Leader of the Year (K-12 Student)

Nominations can be submitted by any individual, business, or student. Individuals and businesses can also nominate themselves. Nominations are open now until July 28. To nominate a business or individual, visit ncwtech.org/innovators.

All qualified nominees will be recognized during the Summer Social, and will also be promoted through media, and showcased at the luncheon in September. The top three finalists in each category will be announced in the weeks leading up to the luncheon, with the winners announced live at the event.

Winners of the two business awards will receive complimentary business memberships to NCW Tech Alliance, plus a year of promotion to highlight their business in the community. Winning innovators in the three education categories will each receive a minimum $500 scholarship to go towards their education or classroom.

About the Awards

Entrepreneur of the Year

Entrepreneurs are people with vision and the ability to see a need and fill it. They have the courage to make change and the stamina to await results. This individual will have displayed exceptional vision, leadership and innovation in building a new company, developing a new product or service, or have creatively developed a way to deliver an existing product or service to the marketplace.

Newcomer In Technology

Successful companies are those that aren’t afraid of change and face technology innovation head on. A Newcomer In Technology nominee is an organization, company, or department that has embraced technology to transform the work environment. These nominees should be using or creating technology in ways that advance production, improve efficiency, or differentiate their product or service for a competitive advantage.

STEM Champion of the Year

This award aims to recognize educators and community members who are pursuing innovative approaches to learning through STEM experiences. The winner will demonstrate passion for STEM education, and will be seen by their peers and community as advocates for promoting STEM pathways for students.

STEM College Student Innovator of the Year

Post-secondary students will be recognized for innovative projects that address real-world problems. Student-led projects are preferred but teacher-led initiatives will be considered if the student project is innovative and unique. The student(s) must demonstrate critical thinking, creativity, innovation, and problem solving. Any construction, data logging and summarizing must have been completed by the student(s). The winner will demonstrate potential for success through leadership and learning.

Future Technology Leader of the Year (K-12)

K-12 students will be recognized for innovative projects in technology. The project does not have to be exclusive to technology — but technology should play a dominant role. Student-led projects are preferred but teacher-led initiatives will be considered if the technology project is innovative, unique, and the student(s) participated in a hands-on, experiential manner. The winner will demonstrate potential for success through leadership, learning, and technology skills.

Jenny Rojanasthien is executive director of NCW Tech Alliance (formerly known as GWATA). The group champions growth and development in North Central Washington by bringing people and technology resources together to create a thriving community.