VBCPS - Charting the Course
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Dr. Heather Allen
Date: 06/01/17 Phone: 757.263.1797
News Release No. 072 Fax: 757.263.1010
Email: heather.allen@vbschools.com

Student teams compete in STEM Trifecta June 8

Virginia Beach City Public Schools (VBCPS) will host the 2017 STEM Trifecta Thursday, June 8, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Virginia Beach Convention Center. The ninth annual event features robotics, maker and cyber security challenges in which students from more than 60 schools will showcase their skills after months of preparation and collaboration in afterschool STEM activities.

The Robotics Challenge, also known this year as the VBCPS Beach Cup Soccer Challenge, will feature a sports theme. Elementary, middle and high school teams will control student-designed robots capable of striking, kicking and grasping a soccer ball using code students programmed. Their robots will be tested on four fields with speed drills, penalty kicks and general playing skills. Points are awarded based on their successful completion of the timed task.

Student teams competing in the Maker Challenge and Cyber Security Challenge qualified based on performances in events the division hosted earlier this school year. Student entrepreneurs in the Maker Challenge will pitch to a panel of judges the 3D printed products their teams created to solve a problem using adaptive technology. The Cyber Security Challenge, added last year, will feature high school students working together to secure and defend a digital infrastructure against security threats and exploited vulnerabilities. Elementary and middle school students will present to judges their prototypes to support an unmet or under met need in education that can be solved using programming.

“The energy and excitement for the STEM Trifecta increases each year and we are excited to see more and more students engaged in activities that introduce them to and prepare them for STEM-related careers in need of skilled professionals,” said Dr. Aaron Spence, VBCPS superintendent. “We appreciate the support of the hundreds of mentors and volunteer judges as well as event sponsors who help make the annual event a success and a positive learning experience for our students.”

The 2017 STEM Trifecta is free and open to the public, and the hashtag #VBTrifecta2017 will be used to share event photos and videos on social media. The event begins with an opening session at 10 a.m. and will conclude with a presentation of awards for each of the STEM Trifecta challenges.

For more information about the STEM Trifecta, visit www.vbSTEMtrifecta.com or contact Dr. Sara Lockett, director of technical and career education, at 757-648-6180 or sara.lockett@vbschools.com.

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Department of Media and Communications, vbcpsweb@vbschools.com

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