Congratulations to our Nardin High School teams who placed first and third in the first ever WNY STEM Hub high school competition - Energize Your Future - powered by National Grid. The 43North-style competition brought together four finalist high school teams at Buffalo’s Northland Training Center to pitch their ideas about how to use engineering to conserve energy.
Sophomores Emma Scott and Mara Tysick of Nardin’s Team 1 presented their proposal with a Residential Rooftop Windmill design that used mini turbines to capture wind energy on top of building structures thereby reducing electricity costs in homes and businesses. Nardin’s Team 2, sophomores Sadie Murphy, Ava Steiner and Christina Zarafonitis, pitched a Small Bioenergy Generator. This compact generator uses pellets made from extra crops, leftover woodchips and shavings to increase energy efficiency for homes, farms and small businesses.
Other finalist teams included a homeschool team that pitched their plan to harness door movement to provide emergency lighting and a team from Iroquois High School proposed various insulation solutions after performing an audit of how their school uses energy.
A panel of energy expert judges heard the pitches, asked probing questions and calculated the winners. U.S. Representative Brian Higgins presented the trophies to Nardin’s Team 1 in first place team, the homeschool team in second place and Nardin’s Team 2 in third place.
“This competition was entirely student-driven. The teams prepared by doing their research, collaborating and really rolling up their sleeves to get the work done. Written proposals were due in early December; soon after, they were pleasantly surprised to learn both teams made the cut to the “final four,” said Sienie Kelly ’71, Chair of Nardin Academy’s High School Science Department.
“During the presentations, and especially during the Q & A from the judges, the girls demonstrated their mettle, responding knowledgeably. In addition to flexing their brains, the girls were very supportive of each other throughout the whole process. It was a joy to watch them accept their well-deserved trophies,” she added.
In addition to the first place trophy, Nardin’s Team 1 also received a check for $1000 from WNY STEM Hub.
WNY STEM Hub is a regional organization that works to raise awareness and build partnerships, serving students, teachers and parents in accessing STEM/STEAM learning and careers. National Grid funded this inaugural competition with support from 43North.