Teen Builds Vending Machine in High School Locker

GETTING IMPORTANT THINGS DONE WITH THE STROKE OF A PEN IS ONE THING, BUT WHAT ABOUT GETTING A MEAL WITH A PUSH OF A BUTTON? THAT’S RIGHT, VENDING MACHINES ARE NO LONGER JUST FOR CANDY AND POP! THIS NEW CULINARY TREND IS ALL ABOUT CONVENIENCE – AND IT’S EXTENDED TO FOODS YOU WOULDN’T EXPECT: CUPCAKES, PIZZA, AND, NOW, BURGERS!

ONE KANSAS TEEN RECENTLY HOPPED ABOARD THE TREND WITH AN INNOVATIVE NEW MACHINE…BUT IT’S NOT WHAT’S IN THE VENDING MACHINE THAT’S INNOVATIVE, IT’S THE LOCATION! SCOTT EVANS HAS THE SCOOP.

A HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT IN KANSAS IS GETTING A LOT OF ATTENTION FROM ALL THE WORLD... AFTER HE TURNED A SCHOOL LOCKER INTO A SODA VENDING MACHINE. SCOTT EVANS REPORTS. --REPORTER PKG-AS FOLLOWS-- BLAKE HAWKINS IS A SENIOR AT VALLEY CENTER HIGH. HE'S THE STUDENT BODY PRESIDENT AND LOVES TO BUILD THINGS.

Blake Hawkins/Student: "when I was younger I used to play with Legos and it just built upon itself."

ONE DAY, WALKING BACK FROM LUNCH HE LOOKED AT A LOCKER AND HAD AN IDEA.

Blake Hawkins/Student: "I really wanted to challenge myself to see if I could do that."

HIS IDEA? HE CALLS IT THE SODA LOCKER. FOR $.75 YOU CAN GET YOURSELF ONE OF TWO DRINKS.

Blake Hawkins/Student: "how about a Mountain Dew? Press the button, and down in the bottom, a can falls out."

HE TOLD A FEW FRIENDS ABOUT IT AND THAT'S ALL IT TOOK. IN JUST A FEW HOURS HE SAYS EVERYONE KNEW ABOUT IT AND HE WAS SELLING SIX CANS A PASSING PERIOD.

Blake Hawkins/Student: "I think most of it is the novelty that you're buying a pop from a vending machine inside of a locker."

WORD ALSO SPREAD TO ADMINISTRATORS. ONE ASSISTANT PRINCIPAL FOUND OUT, WENT TO THE LOCKER AND TOOK PICTURES. NOT TO GET HIM IN TROUBLE - BUT TO SNAP CHAT IT TO FRIENDS. HE'S SINCE HAD TO SHUT IT DOWN BECAUSE IT VIOLATES TWO SCHOOL RULES - BUT HE'S WORKING WITH THE ADMINISTRATION TO SET SOMETHING UP AT THE SCHOOL WHERE HE CAN SELL SOMETHING AND DONATE THE MONEY TO A CLUB OR PROGRAM. BUT HIS STORY DOESN'T END THERE. HE ENTERED HIS PLANS INTO A CONTEST. RO GET MORE VOTES HE POSTED IT TO IMGUR.

Blake Hawkins/Student: "I woke up and I guess my imgur post had gotten a lot of up votes. By the end of that day I got over 500,000 views, just in a day." Scott Evans/Reporting: "From there, the Daily Mail did a story on him that's been shared nearly three thousand times. The Discovery Channel contacted him as well." Blake Hawkins/Student: "it's just shocking. I really don't know what to do. I never thought I'd ever experience anything like this."

THIS MAY BE JUST THE BEGINNING FOR THIS HIGH SCHOOL SENIOR. HE PLANS TO GO TO WICHITA STATE, STUDY ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING, THEN ONE DAY OWN HIS OWN BUSINESS... MAYBE SELLING THE INVENTION HE MADE INSIDE HIS HIGH SCHOOL LOCKER.


Instructional Links


Videos: Instructables, The Soda Locker - Vending Machine | Technical info on how to make one.

Website Article, Wonderopolis, How Smart are Vending Machines

Encyclopedia Article: World Book Student, Vending Machine | May need password.

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