Looking for the 2023 Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards?

Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards 2022

Entries have now closed and Winners have been announced

Council is proud to partner with Telstra and Study Sunshine Coast to deliver the Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards 2022.

There are over $10,000 in prizes up for grabs!

Students in Years 9 to 12 at high schools within the Sunshine Coast Council local government area are encouraged to apply and bring their creative idea or solution to life. It connects students with mentors to develop skills relevant to industry and critical thinking. This could be a new app, design and engineering project, gaming technology or robotics. It could be a smarter phone, watch or digital camera. It could be a new idea for transport, health, agriculture, cyber security, conservation, construction, energy or recreation. It could be the use of existing technology in a new way to solve a community, environmental or business challenge. The possibilities are endless!

2022 Winners

The 2022 Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards winners were announced at a special event on Thursday 14th July 2022:

1st Place

Bird Bell

Suncoast Christian College

Tayah Allison, Chloe Lever & Alaya Page.

2nd Place

Orbital Caddy

Matthew Flinders Anglican College

Amy Morrison, Tyler Cuttill, Bethany Slocombe.

3rd Place

Peas in Pods

Chancellor State College

Grace Murray, Amitis Rezazadeh, Eleanor Dean.

The Emerging Entrepreneur Award

Jared Moss

Glasshouse Christian College

Finalists Announced

After an in-depth judging and review process, Sunshine Coast Council, Telstra and Study Sunshine Coast are thrilled to announce the finalists in this year’s Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards.

Chancellor State CollegePea in a Pod Housing
Creating a safe home for all in need through modular pod houses that are compact and temporary whilst being made through sustainable practices such as being built out of recycled plastic bricks. The houses are designed to be small but have everything to meet one’s basic needs, seen in Maslow’s hierarchy. These compact houses are transportable by trucks and cargo ships due to the materials used whilst being able to be located anywhere optimising space and housing conditions such as being north facing. The application of transport to pod compact houses fosters the ability to be used as a short-term solution to the ever-growing housing issues plaguing Australia, but also having the features to attract commercial use, thus attracting a large market in our current society. The idea was formed through a discussion of the housing crisis and how the application of sustainable practices known could provide a way to solve a huge issue in Australia.
Glasshouse Christian CollegeType 1 World
I am making a game that teaches people how to manage Type 1 Diabetes. In the game you will be able to walk around, interact with other people and you will need to give insulin and take glucose. You must try to keep your blood sugar in range (you can pick the range).  I am hoping this will help newly diagnosed kids and teens to manage their Type 1 diabetes while also giving them the chance to chat online with other kids going through the same thing.
Matthew Flinders Anglican CollegeOrbital Caddy
Our idea is called the Orbital Caddy as it is an orbiting set of drawers that act as a caddy by carrying/holding people’s belongings. It is essentially a rotating shelf system that rotates similarly to a Ferris wheel, allowing easy access to each of the compartments. One of the final designs will be electronic, allowing the user to press a button to rotate the shelves and get what they want. There will also be non-electronic versions available as a cheaper model for those who do not require automatic rotation. It is intended that the Orbital Caddy can be installed into any cabinet with access provided from the top, bottom or side, depending on the client’s requirements, allowing it to act as a floor-up or ceiling-down set of drawers. It will allow easier storage and accessibility to stored items. There are some similar ideas to the orbital caddy, however, ours is the only vertically rotating shelves system that can be installed inside someone’s home. It can replace any shelving system in any room that has space for it to be installed. This could be in someone’s kitchen, bedroom, bathroom and many more different kinds of locations inside someone’s home. It could also be installed in other locations such as an office or a shop.
Mountain Creek State High SchoolKynnan James
A water bound drone that analyses the surrounded area of algae and the water to decide if the algae should be completely removed or partially removed. Collected algae will also be used to create biofuels, as well as analysing the water and alerting necessary personal to treat and clean the water.
Mountain Creek State High SchoolCoastEZParks
Our idea is an easily and readily accessible software that allows users to find public parking spots suited to their personal needs near them, which reduces emissions because of the reduced time of the users car running. It’s innovative because it’s a very cost effective solution to the pollution problem with simplicity.
We came up with the idea because we are passionate about making changes for the better as easy as possible using the power of innovation.
Mountain Creek State High SchoolSecuroSea
To set up motion sensors specific to trawling disturbances around trawling banned areas to alert coast guards (and possibly identify the trawlers) to react accordingly to protect the ecosystems in that area or stopping illegal fishing. This idea was inspired through using the advancements in technology and reviving Australian oceans.
Mountain Creek State High SchoolShred-All
Our idea is a multi-material shredder that can shred more than one material at a time such as plastic and paper based materials.
Suncoast Christian CollegeSeaShaw
Our modern approach of using rickshaws will provide an environmentally friendly mode of transport to promote Sunshine Coast tourism. ‘SeaShaw’ (sea-shore) will provide transport for local residents and visitors along our shoreline beaches.
Suncoast Christian CollegeBird Bell
We have developed a discreet bird deterrent that will prevent injuries and promote safety and wellbeing for sporting enthusiasts. Our device emits a high frequency, undetected by the human ear (20,000Hz) that will prevent bird attacks. The detachable unit enables it to transfer between different users and modes of transport.
Suncoast Christian CollegeOrigami Huts

Finalists are now invited to attend four development workshops with a dedicated industry leader as mentor and expert guest presenters, to help take their ideas to the next level and prepare for Phase Two judging. Workshops will be held each Thursday evening from 4pm-6pm at Venue 114.

The aims of The Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards 2022 are:

  • Nurture the knowledge base that exists among young people in our region
  • Encourage students to be innovative & collaborative by:
    • encouraging teamwork between students;
    • giving students an opportunity to present their ideas and concepts to a wider community audience; and recognising the efforts and achievements of students.
  • Highlight the importance of study in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths) fields for the future of the Sunshine Coast – building a knowledge-based economy
  • Foster a culture of entrepreneurship amongst young people in the region through:
    • connecting students with opportunities such as access to mentors in the business community and other support channels;
    • providing students with valuable experience and knowledge regarding entrepreneurship at a local level; and incentivising students to take risks by making their own decisions to explore different opportunities.

The key details for this year’s awards program are:

Awards aim to encourage innovation, and/or a

  • The competition for the 2022 Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards officially opens 15th February 2022.
  • The awards are open to students from Years 9 to 12 in teams of up to three. Teams must be from High Schools that are located within the Sunshine Coast Local Government Area.
  • There is no limit to the number of teams that can enter from each school.
  • Phase One of the awards commences 15th February 2022. Teams will have 10 weeks to develop an original innovation, business or technological idea or concept.
  • Entries for Phase One of the competition close 11.59pm, 27th April 2022.
  • An evaluation panel will review all entries and shortlist 12 finalist teams who will be announced 6th May 2022.
  • During Phase Two, teams have a further 4 weeks to develop their original idea or concept. During this phase, students will attend four face to face mentoring sessions at Venue 114, Bokarina where they will have the opportunity to be coached by a range of Entrepreneurs and Industry Experts.
  • Entries for Phase Two of the competition close at 11.59pm, 21st June 2022.
  • An evaluation panel will review the entries and allocate scores based on the award criteria set out in the terms and conditions.
  • Live pitch and awards ceremony to be held on 14th July 2022, the 12 finalist teams will present their ideas or concepts in a live ‘pitch’ to the evaluation panel. Final scores for this presentation will be allocated and the winner of Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards 2022 announced.


The Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards are delighted to announce there is over $10,000 in prizes up for grabs for teams and the winning school. 
All of this year’s prizes are proudly sourced from Telstra stores on the Sunshine Coast.

First Prize

Garmin Venu SQ Fitness Watch for each student, Beats Wireless Studio Buds for each student, Google Nest Mini each for students, DJI Mini 2 Drone for use by the school, 6-hours of team mentoring, Certificate for each student, School Trophy

Second Prize

Garmin Venu SQ Fitness Watch for each student, Google Nest Mini each for students, Certificate for each student and a School Trophy

Third Prize

Beats Wireless Studio Buds for each student, Google Nest Mini each for students, Certificate for each student and a School Trophy

Emerging Entrepreneur Award

6-hours of mentoring & School Trophy


Official School Handbook

The Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards 2022 School Handbook contains all information about this year’s competition, entry details, prize information and more.

Official Flyer

Parental Consent Form

Download and complete the Parental consent form and attach to the entry form.

Key Dates

Entries have now closed and Winners have been announced

Tuesday 15th February 2022 (Term 1, Week 2 delayed start) – Competition opens

Wednesday 27th April 2022, 11:59pm– Phase 1 competition entries close

Friday 6th May 2022 – Finalist Teams announced and Phase 2 of the competition begins

Thursday 12th May 2022 (4pm – 6pm) – Mentoring session 1 at Venue 114

Thursday 19th May 2022 (4pm – 6pm) – Mentoring session 2 at Venue 114

Thursday 26th May 2022 (4pm – 6pm) – Mentoring session 3 at Venue 114

Thursday 2nd June 2022 (4pm – 6pm) – Mentoring session 4 at Venue 114

Tuesday 21st June 2022, 11:59pm – Phase 2 competition entries close

Thursday 14th July 2022, 6.00pm – Live Pitch and Awards Ceremony


The Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards 2022 are proudly brought to you by:

Sunshine Coast Council’s Economic Development Branch is managing these Awards.  This project directly aligns with one of the five critical pathways identified in the Regional Economic Development Strategy (REDS) 2013-2033, namely; Investment in Talent and Skills. The Sunshine Coast Council is committed to achieving the economic, social and environmental goals detailed in the REDS, and this project will be another step towards achieving those goals.

In addition, the Knowledge and Professional Services Industry and Investment Plan further highlights the need for all encompassing digital education and connectivity, as well as focusing on collaboration as a key driver in creating the new knowledge-based economy.

Telstra are a world class technology company and Australia’s largest mobile network, providing users with mobile phones, internet plans and packages, home phones & more. The Sunshine Coast Telstra Innovation Awards builds on Council’s and Telstra’s ambitions for the future and encourages students in our region to start thinking today about the possibilities of tomorrow.

Study Sunshine Coast (SSC), established since 2016, is the official study cluster for the Sunshine Coast region and is supported and funded by Sunshine Coast Council and Trade & Investment Queensland through Study Queensland. SSC plays an important role in supporting the student journey including positioning the Sunshine Coast as a leading Australian study destination for both domestic and international students. SSC also works closely with industry and our education providers to attract, develop and retain talent to support the growth and vision for the region.

Key focus areas:

  • Destination promotion
  • Enhancing the student experience
  • Industry engagement and collaboration to support students


The Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards helps bring creative ideas to life for students in Years’ 9, 10, 11 and 12 at high schools within the Sunshine Coast Council Local Government Area. It connects students with industry mentors to develop enterprise skills and entrepreneurial thinking and runs from February to July 2022.

Mentor Program

The Mentors are a critical component of the 12 Finalist teams journey in the MTIA. The four face to face Mentor sessions gives the teams exposure to local innovators and entrepreneurs to help evolve and strengthen their creative concept and idea and hear from a guest Mentor presenter.

 The MTIA mentoring sessions connects students with industry mentors to develop enterprise skills and entrepreneurial thinking. The Awards focus on business or social enterprise ideas that utilise innovation principles, creative uses of technology or scalable concepts – this could be a new app, design and engineering, gaming technology, robotics, a smarter phone, watch or digital camera.

Ilana Boon

Manager, International Marketing & Recruitment at USC

Dominic Vrolijks

Maker in Residence at Sunshine Coast Maker Space

Matt Travers

Director at Sunny Digital

Neil Waldbaum

Owner at Deep Orange Design

Tara Jacobsen

Co-Founder & Program Director at Groei

Raphael McGowan

Founder of Bakslap

Angela Lisle

Director of ICT & Digital at TAFE Queensland

Saskia De Klerk

Senior Lecturer in International Business at USC

Colin Graham

Managing Director at Causeway Innovation & Program Manager at Sunramp Healthtech Accelerator

Workshop Presenters


Managing Director, CTO at Frontside Future

Workshop 1: 12th May

Topic: Product Development


Founder of Bakslap

Workshop 2: 19th May

Topic: The journey of Bakslap; from an idea to a successful business


Director of PIXELPIXEL and Founder at Startup Precinct

Workshop 3: 26th of May

Topic: Prototyping


Director of Speak for Impact

Workshop 4: 2nd of June

Topic: Pitching & Presenting with Impact

2021 Winners

More than 20 finalists across Years 9, 10, 11 and 12 on the Sunshine Coast got together with their school mates to create an application or invention as part of this year’s Sunshine Coast Telstra Innovation Awards. The winners were announced at a special event on 23 June 2021:

1st Place


Glasshouse Christian College

‘IoT LED Light ‘Learner Plate’ – A bright new way for learner drivers to display their ‘L’ plates, along with a compatible phone app to change the plates as needed from L’s to P’s.

2nd Place

Mobile Safety Hubs

Suncoast Christian College

On demand portable locker service for popular areas (beaches, sporting events etc).

3rd Place


St Andrews Anglican College

Revolutionising the use of shark nets with a new alternative and sustainable design that is reliable.

The Emerging Entrepreneur Award

Heart Attract

Glasshouse Christian College

A wearable ECG monitor for cardiovascular outpatients

Questions? Get in Touch with Us

For all enquiries related to the Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards 2022, please submit via the form and we will respond to your enquiry within 48 hours:

Having trouble submitting?

Email marina@studysunshinecoast.com.au 
or tracey@studysunshinecoast.com.au for assistance.

"*" indicates required fields

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

The Latest News from the Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards