Graves County Middle School students, from left, Jaron Hale, Benjamin Phillips, Nicole Taylor, Dylan Thompson, Jackson Purcell, and Emily Goddard, along with their coach, Tracey Tashjian, County Extension Agent for 4-H, returned from the 2013-2014 Future City competition recently with a first place title in the model division and fifth place award overall. Twenty-seven other teams from Kentucky participated in the event held on the University of Kentucky’s campus and sponsored by the College of Engineering.
Preparations began in October when the Graves County team, along with more than 35,000 other middle school students from some 1,200 schools in 37 regions across the United States set about to prepare for the nationally-sponsored Future City Contest. This year’s theme was “What Will Tomorrow’s Transportation Look Like?” Students faced a number of challenges and deadlines through the duration of the contest, including designing a virtual city using SimCity software, writing a research-based essay and narrative detailing their transportation solution, building a model of their city and making a presentation to a panel of judges explaining how their engineering ideas would move urban populations with safety, speed and energy efficiency.
Future City is a nationally-sponsored competition for sixth-, seventh-, and eighth-graders that puts its student competitors in real world situations and asks them to be the problem-solvers, as they brainstorm ideas and design solutions. This was the first year Graves County was represented in the contest and the team is already looking forward to next year’s competition and hopes of representing Kentucky at the National Contest in Washington, D.C.
To learn more about becoming involved in other 4-H activities, please contact Tracey Tashjian at (270) 247-2334.