Carpenter’s fifth grade’Dream Team’ places second in Michigan Girls Future Flight Challenge

Each team was asked to create a unique, sustainable way of flight to solve a problem of their choosing

The Women of Aerospace Industry Association of Michigan would like to congratulate the AAPS Carpenter Elementary School’s Dream Team members Kamara Hollins, Lucile Looney, Ja’Shae Henderson, and Morgan Johnson. 

These creative 5th grade students in Noncy Fields’ class placed second in the Michigan Girls Future Flight Challenge while using teamwork and critical thinking skills in the areas of Engineering, Marketing & Design, and Business Planning & Sales.

On June 8, mentor Stacy Paul (center) drove from Grand Rapids to meet and award prizes to the girls in person.  With her are, left to right: Noncy Fields, Kamara Hollins, Ja’Shae Henderson, and Morgan Johnson.  Not pictured is Lucile Looney.

More than 100 students participated in this virtual state-wide aerospace competition which concluded May 21 and consisted of 42 teams of 2-5 girls in 4th-8th grade. The girls worked over a period of several weeks directly with Stacy Paul of Array of Engineers, who served as mentor for their project.

Each team was asked to create a unique, sustainable way of flight to solve a problem of their choosing. During a Zoom meeting with three judges representing the Aerospace industry, the Dream Team presented a slide show presentation highlighting their research on the Great Pacific Trash Belt and how their innovative solution, the Ocean Cleaner could clean up the trash. The Ocean Cleaner, a helicopter drone designed to search out, locate and extract trash from the ocean, includes sensors to repel marine life, solar panels for clean energy, and a trash compactor to maximize the amount of trash it can carry. 

Sketch of the Ocean Cleaner with labels
The Ocean Cleaner prototype

According to the WAIAM website, Michigan has one of the most extensive aerospace clusters in the nation with nearly 1,000 companies supporting the global industry. Sponsors of the event included Eaton, Woodward, Jackson Flexible Products, Array of Engineers, Genuen, Barron Industries, PALM Industries, and Calumet Electronics.

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