Girl’s Invention Goes National On ‘Steve’

By Michelle Firestone
The Chronicle, Willimantic, Conn.

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) Meet the 8 year old girl who has created the “MagnaMat.” The product helps prevent cups, utensils, plates and more from falling off a table. Her invention was recently featured on the Steve Harvey show.


Thirdgrader Eva Donnelly-Hardisty, 8, never imagined she would get to appear on a television show.

Recently, the Willimantic girl, who goes to school at Riverside Magnet School in East Hartford, talked about her invention on ” Steve,” comedian Steve Harvey’s daily talk show.

Her episode of the show was scheduled to be aired on NBC Connecticut at 2 p.m. today.

“Being on the show was awesome,” Eva said in a statement from The STEMIE Coalition. “It was so fun and so exciting. I also had my first plane ride and got to do some traveling around.”

The show is filmed in Los Angeles.

According to The STEMIE Coalition website, the coalition’s mission is to have all children in kindergarten through 12th grade become inventors and/ or entrepreneurs.

Eva said in a statement Harvey gave her tickets to Universal Studios, which she described her time at as “life-changing.”

Her invention, MagnaMat, helps prevent cups, utensils, plates and more from falling off the table.

Eva attended the Charles H. Barrows STEM Academy in Windham before attending Riverside Magnet School, which is affiliated with Goodwin College, where her mother, Erin Donnelly, works.

According to the Barrows website, Eva won an award at the state Invention Convention at the University of Connecticut in Storrs in April while she was a student at Barrows.

Donnelly spoke about her daughter’s invention in the statement from The STEMIE Coalition.
” Inventing is something that comes so naturally to kids because they are always looking for an easier solution or better plan. The invention process gives children the opportunity to organize their thoughts and build a framework and then the handson learning that takes place is just icing on the cake,” Donnelly said in the statement.

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