RPI getting students interested in STEM

TROY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Middle school students from more than 30 regional school districts are enjoying 10 days at the Bernard Harris Summer Science Camp.

The middle school kids are paving the way to Mars.

“They’re going to be dropping Mars landing contraptions onto a landing zone,” Cynthia Smith, Assistant Dean of Students at RPI, said.

The kids took an hour on Monday to plan out their design, coming up with the type of materials they wanted to use.

The students used materials from cotton balls, tooth picks, straws, and bubble wrap.

Once the kids picked their materials, they had to purchase them and with only a budget of $100 to spend, some serious choices on their landers were needed.

“It wasn’t how we planned it, but I think it actually worked out better then what we planned,” Emily Mickan said.

The kids had 20 minutes to build and test before the big two meter drop onto the landing pad.

After testing, the kids picked their astronaut.

The next challenge was to hit the big “H” and have the astronaut survive the landing on mars.

The kids all lined up for their turn. With great care, the distance from the landing site was measured and once the crafts landed, each was checked to see how close they got and how the astronaut did.

Exxon Mobil made donations for the event.

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