• Members of a judging panel, including 1st Lt. Vanessa Dudley, assistant operations officer from 1st Battalion, 361st Engineer Regiment, Task Force Redhawk, 5th Armored Brigade, Division West, assess an architectural model for a new mall in northeast El Paso, Texas, for a Texas Science, Technology, Engineer and Mathematics Initiative presentation at Parkland High School, May 29. The students researched empty lots in the area and used 3-D computer programs to help build a model properly scaled to size. (Photo by Capt. Khoi Nguyen, 1st Battalion, 361st Regiment, 5th Armored Training Brigade, Division West)

    5th AR officer helps judge Parkland High School T-STEM projects

    Members of a judging panel, including 1st Lt. Vanessa Dudley, assistant operations officer from 1st Battalion, 361st Engineer Regiment, Task Force Redhawk, 5th Armored Brigade, Division West, assess an architectural model for a new mall in northeast El...

  • After a year of learning from the Texas Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Initiative, high school seniors present their improved version of an existing product, a dog pooper scooper, to a judging panel during their senior project presentation at Parkland High School in El Paso, Texas, May 29. The students used the motor from an electronic mop and the handle from a caulking gun to improve the existing product. An officer with 1st Battalion, 361st Engineer Regiment, Task Force Redhawk, 5th Armored Brigade, Division West, was on the judging panel that evaluated the presentations. (Photo by Capt. Khoi Nguyen, 1st Battalion, 361st Regiment, 5th Armored Training Brigade, Division West)

    5th AR officer helps judge Parkland High School T-STEM projects

    After a year of learning from the Texas Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Initiative, high school seniors present their improved version of an existing product, a dog pooper scooper, to a judging panel during their senior project...

EL PASO, Texas -- Soldiers with a Fort Bliss training unit recently volunteered at Parkland High School for their first Texas Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Initiative senior project presentation.

Assistant operations officer 1st Lt. Vanessa Dudley, with the 1st Battalion, 361st Engineer Regiment, Task Force Redhawk, 5th Armored Brigade, Division West, served on the judging panel, using her Army engineering experience to critique the students. Task Force Redhawk regularly volunteers with the T-STEM program at Parkland High School and has brought the students to McGregor Range in New Mexico to see the equipment 5th AR uses to train deploying Army National Guard and Reserve Soldiers.

The students were the first seniors to graduate from the new four-year Engineering Design and Development program at Parkland High School.

"The Engineering Design and Development is a year-long class," said Ramon Rivera, the T-STEM coordinator for the high school. "The first semester is dedicated to finding a real life problem, researching the pros and cons, and deciding on a design on how best to help the problem. The second semester is dedicated to applying the research and developing a prototype. The culmination of the class is the presentation and defense of the problem to an unbiased panel."

The seniors were broken into six groups at the beginning of the school year and given the entire year to complete their projects. During the presentation, they either presented an architectural project or a project that improved an existing product on today's consumer market. Six presentations were given, ranging from a solar panel cleaner to building a new mall in northeast El Paso.

Students were required to make a physical prototype model, test it, and give a 20-minute presentation on the product/building to the panel. The judges looked at a variety of actions to determine the teams' score, such as their presentation skills, graphics used, and the time that went into their physical prototypes.

"This presentation was a great opportunity to connect with our community," said Dudley. "The students avidly listened to any suggestions that were offered and a few even wanted to know more about engineering in the Army."

An awards ceremony was conducted later in the evening to reward the seniors' hard work in the program.

"Personally, I couldn't be happier in having the 5th Armored Brigade as our partners in education," said Rivera. "I can attest to the fact that our students have benefitted tremendously."

Page last updated Tue June 25th, 2013 at 00:00