JWPMS Students Create Aerospace Displays for International Engineers

Posted on November 8, 2012, in Lancer Life

The sixth grade STEM program at James W. Parker Middle School are catching the eyes of international engineers.

The Lord Corporation recently had a dinner party for a team of nine international engineers who came to Erie and worked on a major aerospace project — James W. Parker’s STEM students built aerospace type displays for the dinner.

“Schools in Erie County are fortunate to have the support of companies such as the Lord Corporation. This project is a good example of how something small can have a huge and lasting impact on a child,” said class instructor Chris Triola. “For the students, it was a real life STEM project that was put before an international team of engineers. It represented a challenge that went way beyond just a grade in the grade book, and the kids really rose to the occasion.”

James W. Parker Middle School has offered the STEM class to students for three years as an exploratory class, further exemplifying the strong academic program in Erie County, PA. The STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) class engages students in hands-on activities to stimulate critical thinking and problem solving skills. The dinner organizer from Lord Corporation, Dr. Olsen, has worked with the sixth grade STEM program in the past to help them understand and find stress fractures in materials used for ROVs.

Engineers reviewed and commented on the displays, which they were very excited to see. Here are the comments recorded as feed back for the kids:

“Great construction – very solid design.  The belt drive is nice!  The drive clutch on the shaft is well done.”

“Excellent work, I will show this to my son to see if he can do it!”

“Excellent use of elastomer for the drive system.  Great job!”  “Very creative and structurally sound.  Robust designs are very important, especially in aerospace.”

“Great work!  Well designed.  Sturdy!”

“Very impressive – If only they made real airplanes like this.”

“First class design getting drive to work both clockwise and counter clockwise direction.”

“The engineers were awesome and really took the time to give the kids feedback on their designs and foster a positive attitude towards the field,” Triola said. “No doubt this experience will stay with some of the kids, you can just see it in their eyes when they got the feedback.”

The class is looking forward to their next opportunity to showcase their work.

Olivia Green and Sarah Converse built an alternative design based on group size.

 Seth Myers, Aida Shadeck, Leah Dubynskiy, and Ethan Greenleaf is the four-person team who completed one of the two designs submitted to the dinner. Achievements likes this help General McLane become one of the best schools in Erie County, PA!