Ever tire of unscrewing the toothpaste cap in the morning?
Karlie Rogers, 17, of Tuolumne, thinks she has the solution.
Rogers has a patent pending on a device she calls the Pastepumper.
Her mother says she hopes to develop the product to the point that she can sell it to a manufacturer.
Pastepumper is the fruit of an eighth-grade project she did for a entrepreneurial competition.
It is a combo paste dispenser and toothbrush.
It has replaceable bristles and the mouthpiece connects to a handle screwed onto a toothpaste tube, in a larger, connecting tube.
The toothbrush dispenses toothpaste adjacent to the bristles and the cover doubles as a stand and a dental floss dispenser.
Now a Summerville High School graduate, Rogers said she thought the invention would be good for college students and travelers.
Her mom, Casey Bonavia, heard about the San Joaquin Challenge for entrepreneurs and inventors.
Rogers placed in the top four in the March contest in Stockton, as the youngest person there.
She made her prototype from household items because, she explained, it’s expensive to have a professional prototype made.
The contest was a positive experience though, she said.
“I had to get up in front of audiences and judges,” she said.
Rogers was named co-athlete of the year, a softball and volleyball player.
She plans to attend California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo, in the fall studying art and design with a concentration on digital photography.