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Central Mountain STEM Club looks toward state competition


Excerpt from:The Express

JAN 28, 2020

MILL HALL — Central Mountain High School’s STEM Club members have recently been recognized for their hard work and immense projects.

The STEM Club is working on three different projects at the moment: a robot, a UV-light milk sterilizer, and a bio-photovoltaic cell that will allow bacteria to produce electricity. The robot will be entered into the Sea, Air, and Land Challenge and the milk sterilizer and bio-cell will be entered into the Governor’s Challenge.

Their recent project, a prototype that has created enough electron flow to power a light bulb, has won state recognition in the Samsung- Solve for Tomorrow Challenge, a challenge where schools are to address issues in their communities.

Co-Advisor of the STEM Club, Sue Hanna, states, “The objective of this STEM project is to teach the students how to use the engineering process in developing a product that will offer a solution to the environmentally devastating effects resulting from the use of fossil fuels.” The club is also advised by teachers Fred Hoy and Jim Rogers.

The STEM Club has been awarded $15,000 in Samsung electronics that can be used for educational purposes. In order to receive these prizes, the STEM Club is to develop and submit a video of STEM students actively involved in the formation of the winning prototype. CMHS STEM Club members will present this prototype on Feb. 7 at the Governor’s Challenge in State College.

If they are successful in moving onto the state competition, their plan is to develop a prototype that can generate electricity using photosynthetic organisms growing in the wetland area at CMHS. Hanna states, “This apparatus may be able to generate enough electricity to power at least some of the outlets and lights of the wetland pavilion.”

Participating in these challenges will increase the chances they have in winning even more money for their accomplishments.

President of the STEM Club, junior Gianna Renzo, along with vice president, senior Chris Lavelle, are both excited and eager for the STEM Club’s future.

Renzo has recently received confirmation from principal of CMHS, Nick Verelli, to start a Science Honors Society, in which she hopes will unite all science-loving students. She is awaiting the official result of whether or not this will be a reality next year from the school board.

Renzo hopes that, in starting the Science Honors Society, she will be able to acquire more of an interest in science, invite well-known guest speakers, and recruit other students who may also be interested in STEM- related activities.

STEM Club members are looking forward to their successes ahead of them. If they advance to the national competition, there is a possibility of receiving even more Samsung electronics, a $50,000 prize to purchase classroom equipment for being a Regional Finalist, and a $100,000 prize to purchase equipment for being a National Finalist.

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