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California State University, Long Beach

Hudson International Studies Magnet School Students State Champs

Group photo

From left to right: Kim Ventura, Reggie Lata, Rae J. Rivera, Breanna Nery

Aftermonths of designing, creating and competing, a team of students from Hudson walked away as state champions of a grueling engineering competition. The team members participate in a college prep program supported by the College of Engineering of California State University, Long Beach's Mathematics, Engineering and Science Achievement (MESA) Program. The group beat out 14,000 other students at preliminary and regional competitions, to triumph at the MESA National Engineering Design Competition championship at UC Santa Barbara on May 9. The four-student team came out on top by designing the best wind energy device. Team members Kim Ventura, Reggie Lata, Rae Jillian Rivera and Breanna Nery will take their contraption to Denver, Colorado in June for a chance at bringing a championship home to Hudson.

This is the first year that the design competition focuses on wind energy, signifying MESA’s goal to stay current with science, engineering and technology trends. The project teaches students to understand design principles such as torque, generating and storing wind energy as well as how to think like environmental scientists. The wind energy project is part of MESA Days, a yearly showcase of students’ math and science know-how. Through MESA and MESA Day competitions, students can explore future careers in science, engineering and other technical fields.

MESA is an academic preparation program that serves more than 20,000 California pre-college, community college and university students who are educationally disadvantaged. Seventy percent of schools served by MESA are among the lowest-performing in the state. Almost two-thirds of MESA high school graduates go on to college as math, engineering or science majors. In 2001, 14,000 California jobs requiring science or engineering degrees went unfilled, making award-winning programs such as MESA an imperative.

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