2nd Annual ‘P-TECH Engineering Wars’ at the Innovare Advancement Center

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ROME, NY (WUTR/WFXV/WPNY) – Friday, October 14eStudents of the Oneida-Herkimer-Madison BOCES (OMH) Pathways in Technology Early College High School (P-TECH) program participated in the second annual “Engineering Wars” at the Innovare Advancement Center in Rome.

Tenth graders from ten schools across the state teamed up and worked hard to design, build, test, and then catapult metal spheres with their “sorting mechanisms” in front of a panel of judges from Trenton Technology. The team that could sort and throw their ball the farthest was the winner.

“Ten schools across the state. This allows students to learn, make mistakes and compete. It’s really important. – Erica Schoff, Director P-TECH OHM BOCES

Erica says the P-TECH program started because of COVID-19 to keep students engaged during the pandemic. This is a free STEM program, designed to give students who don’t normally have access to these types of programs a chance to participate. The first year was all virtual and special because students could see each other during this difficult time.

They worked closely with Trenton Technology, a PCB assembly/manufacturer in Utica, who designed the program challenges and has worked with OHM BOCES for years. Mark Paciello, director of production at Trenton Technology, explains that they first partnered with BOCES about eight years ago.

In thinking about this year’s challenge, they wanted to strike a balance between what was achievable for students to take off safely and something that would still be fun for them at the same time.

“It’s exciting to see the hugely different solutions the children come up with. They think outside the box and as a team. Great to have this locally, any chance to inspire young minds is great” – Mark Paciello, Production Manager, Trenton Technology

Mark says that in addition to the Engineering Wars program, Trenton Technology also mentors students each year, “giving them a taste of life” and will continue to work with Oneida-Herkimer-Madison (OHM) BOCES in the future.

Winners of Engineering Wars 2022:
1st Location: TPS BOCES
2n/a Location: Questar III BOCES
3rd Location: ITC Syracuse CSD

Anyone interested in learning more about the P-TECH program can visit the OHM BOCES website, here.

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