High Schooler Layla Dupont Wins 2020 Michelin Junior Challenge Design

Battery Creek High School student Layla Dupont has been chosen as the overall winner for the fourth annual Michelin Junior Challenge Design, an engineering challenge for students hosted by the Head Island Concours d’Elegance & Motoring Festival along with the tire manufacturer. Dupont, the fourth female student or team to win first prize, will receive a combined $1000 in scholarship funds for her winning design.

The other five finalists will also each receive $500 in scholarship funding for their submissions.

This year’s theme was “Land, Air & Sea,” and was judged by industry professionals like Jaguar Lead Exterior Designed Vera Park, Creative Director of Franchise at Pixar Animation Studios Jay Ward and Head of Design for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Ralph Gilles over a live Zoom broadcast that took place yesterday, November 1:

Read the full press release below:

HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. – In collaboration with the Hilton Head Island Concours d’Elegance & Motoring Festival, Michelin announced yesterday the winner of the 4th annual Michelin Junior Challenge Design competition, “Land, Air & Sea.”  The special competition is an extension of Michelin’s global challenge, an annual engagement since 2002.  The competition was open to high school students in Beaufort County, S.C., and is designed to encourage students to learn about the mobility and automotive industries in the state of South Carolina.

Entries by individuals and teams of students were reviewed and selected by a distinguished jury of the world’s top automotive designers and industry experts:

  • Moray Callum, Vice President Design, Ford Motor Company
  • Frank Campanale, Judging Coordinator
  • Ralph Gilles, Head of Design, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles
  • Vera Park, Lead Exterior Designer, Jaguar
  • Michael Simcoe, Vice President of Global Design, General Motors
  • Chris Sparrow, Employment Services Coordinator, Able SC
  • Jay Ward, Creative Director of Franchise, Pixar Animation Studios
  • Ed Welburn, retired Vice President of Global Design, General Motors

I believe this is one of the few events that brings this number of heads of design together,” said Lindsey Harrell, president of the Hilton Head Island Concours d’Elegance & Motoring Festival.  “It’s such a tremendous experience for these students – to interact with and present to industry leaders of this caliber, and we’re seeing this contest have a direct impact on what these students see of their futures.  Two of our six finalists this year want to become an automotive designer.”

A top design was selected from each of the six high schools in Beaufort County, S.C., with scholarship awards of $500 for each finalist.  The overall winner also earned an additional $500 scholarship.  Finalists presented their designs to the panel on Sunday, November 1 during a live Zoom broadcast (click here to view), a part of the Driving Young America Boulevard powered by Castrol® virtual series.

The winning entries from each school were as follows:

  • Battery Creek High School: Layla Dupont (overall winner)
  • Beaufort High School: Evan Moreno
  • Bluffton High School: Zachary Seidner
  • Hilton Head Island High School: Said Gonzalez
  • May River High School: Erik Adame
  • Whale Branch Early College High School: Taniyah Brown, Tatiana Nix and Kamarae Smalls

We received a record number of entries for this year’s Challenge,” said Michelin’s Ben Ebel.  “We’ve seen this program grow each year but weren’t sure what to expect this year with the program being run virtually amid COVID-19.  And we presented an added challenge to the students this year – design for an end user that wasn’t them.  We asked them to design a vehicle specifically for a wheelchair user, and I think that added to the interest and excitement for the students.”

The Hilton Head Concours is honored to continue to partner with Michelin on this program,” said Harrell.  “The growing interest each year shows the impact it’s having on the students in Beaufort County, and the support from industry leaders is truly remarkable.  The entrants were impressive, and we look forward to continuing to build on this program as part of our charitable mission at Driving Young America.”

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View comments on the CMS forums
11/17/20 8:19 a.m.

Great projects. Glad to see students in schools moved beyond the baking soda volcano to actually studying the structural dynamics of flow.



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