Schools place in tech contest

Northern Cambria, Bedford students earn first place

From Mirror staff reports

Three area schools recently placed at the Technology Student Association Na­tional Conference in Wash­ing­ton, D.C., for high school and middle school students.

Pennsylvania had 11 national champions, including Northern Cambria Middle School students.

The Northern Cambria Middle School team took first place in mechanical engineering, and Bedford High School took first in architectural design.

“Considering that a small public school in western Pennsylvania can compete with — and beat out — larger schools or even STEM-related charter schools, shows just how great these kids are,” said Matthew Kline, a local TSA coordinator and teacher at Northern Cambria.

There were 70 competitions during the conference.

“This was a huge accomplishment for these students, since they have been working on these projects for many months. In most cases, these students start in early September re­search­ing and planning what competitions they want to do and researching how they want to move forward with these. Then the work begins, designing and building their projects. … The Pa. State conference includes 170 chapters, and placing alone can be a challenge. However, the mech­anical engineering team, as well as an individual student, Garrett Link, (competing in flight en­durance) were both state champions.”

“Students at Northern Cambria start their education in the field of technology early,” he stated in an email. “We have an elementary science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM) teacher who teaches all students from kindergarten up until fifth grade. Then when they move to the middle school, every student in sixth, seventh and eighth grade has a technology and engineering class. Once they move up to the high school, these students have the opportunity to take a handful of classes in CAD, architecture, manufacturing, and wood construction, just to name a few. We have dedicated teachers who are willing to put forth the extra effort to get these students to achieve their best.”

Local teams placing in the Technology Student Asso­ciation National Conference include:

n Bedford High School: first in architectural design, second in computer integrated manufacturing, third in 3D animation and seventh in transportation modeling.

n Northern Cambria High School: third in structural design and engineering and ninth in flight endurance.

n Northern Cambria Middle School first in mechanical engineering.