Innovation Award winners continue to shine brightly


When Lucas Webb and Aliyah Funschelle received honors at the Wichita State University Innovation Awards in January, their Bright Futures awards couldn’t have been more on the nose.

Aliyah, a senior in sport management with a minor in communication, was honored for her creation of the student-run sports digital network known as Shockwave.

“I’ve had a lot of experiences getting to cover sports, and a lot of those opportunities I created for myself. I know a lot of people don’t have that ability,” she said. “People always ask me how I get to do what I do, so I thought – why not just start something for other students to get to hands-on experience in the sports industry?”

Aliyah created Shockwave in August 2019, and the network is dedicated to all Shocker sports.

 “It’s all WSU sports. We even did a live broadcast from some intramural sports. We cover rowing, e-sports – anything Wichita State-related,” she said.

Aliyah is now ensuring that Shockwave has a sustainable future.

“I’m laying down the foundation for it to still run after I’m gone,” she said. “I’m creating a handbook and appointing future leaders and teaching them how to recruit and how to maintain Shockwave."

Lucas Webb Courtesy
Lucas Webb

Lucas Webb, a senior in aerospace engineering, is moving onto a bright future as well. 

During his time at Wichita State University, Lucas has been a member of the Cohen Honors College, serving on its student council. One of his initiatives on the council was to examine admissions requirements for the Honors College.

“We’re re-looking at the admissions requirements to get rid of the GPA minimum requirements to allow for a broader pool of applicants who may have had struggles in high school doing full-time jobs and things like that,” Lucas said.

Currently, Lucas and three other aerospace seniors are focused on his senior design project for the NASA student launch competition, “which is basically building a high-powered rocket to complete a mission and deploy a rover,” he said.

Though the COVID-19 pandemic has forced the competition to be postponed and modified, results are expected later this summer.  

“The actual competition was supposed to be at the beginning of April, but then they canceled that. Then they were going to do at-home competitions and launch from where we are, but then it got worse so that got canceled,” Lucas said. “We’ve turned in three 150-page reports throughout the year explaining our design and things we did with it, so now they’re going to judge us based on that.”

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