Wisconsin Homeschoolers Win Build-A-Plane Design Contest

WASHINGTON, DC – The General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) and Build A Plane have announced that the CHEF Homeschoolers in Cuba City, Wisconsin, have won the third Aviation Design Challenge to promote Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) knowledge among U.S. high school students. Four students, one teacher, and one chaperone from the high school will receive an all-expenses-paid trip to Glasair Aviation in Arlington, Washington to build a Glasair Sportsman airplane, June 8-19, 2015.

More than 70 schools in 31 states and Washington, DC, entered the competition. The teams used Fly to Learn curricula and training to learn the fundamentals of aerospace engineering and flight, and software powered by X-Plane to apply what they learned to modify and fly a virtual Glasair Sportsman airplane. Each school was scored on how much payload the plane carried, how much fuel it used, and the time the flight took. Judges from GAMA’s engineering team selected the winning school, taking into consideration the design features based on what the students applied from the curriculum. The students also submitted a one-page essay about how the competition increased their knowledge of STEM.

The GAMA competition teaches the importance of teamwork, creativity, and critical thinking, the students wrote.

“We learned a great deal about STEM, how to test our aircraft consistently, and how to make very finite changes to our plane to get better results. The competition has been an excellent learning experience for us!”

GAMA President and CEO Pete Bunce said, “I am very excited that, once again, GAMA will be partnering with Build A Plane, Glasair, and Jeppesen to support this amazing educational opportunity for these talented young men and women. To have this many high school students participate in the design and flight simulation portion of this competition is exactly the type of STEM education we get excited about as manufacturers.” (www.GAMA.aero)

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