The MESA (Math, Engineering & Science Achievement) team from Eastern Tech is compriseing d of Grade 12 student Aneisa Jangbahadur, 2019 graduate AJ Saquilayan, and Grade 12 student Christopher Tang. A fourth team member, 2019 graduate Hana Harwood, missed the event because of commitments as an incoming Naval Academy Midshipman. The team sponsor is Angela Waldrop, an Eastern Tech engineering teacher.
The competition required the students to use provided technology to develop a device that would help solve a challenge in the community, either for a specific group of people or the community in general. The device produced by the Eastern Tech students is intended to aid people with vision challenges. Taken from the students’ printed description, “The proposed device is a pod attached to the bottom of the mobility aid that would allow the user to obtain a better sense of their surroundings through audio and vibrating output. It would help the client to detect his or her proximity from obstacles and should eliminate the fear that exploring unfamiliar environments induces.”
During the national competition, the Eastern Tech students participated in a technical interview, a pitch presentation, and a poster symposium for the device, competing against high school teams from at least eight other states.
To represent Maryland MESA in Tucson, the team initially presented their NEDC device at the Regional MESA BCPS Day in March. Placing first in the NEDC competition at the Regionals meant that the Eastern Tech team represented MESA BCPS in the NEDC Challenge at Maryland MESA Day in May. Their first-place finish at Maryland MESA Day qualified them to compete in the USA NEDC.
[Image via BCPS: Pictured, from left to right, are AJ Saquilayan, Christopher Tang, and Aneisa Jangbahadur]