Let it Rain! Dream It Do It: Students Undaunted by Weather

   Written by on July 3, 2015 at 12:58 pm
For more photos of this event, go to southsidemessengerphotos.shutterfly.com

For more photos of this event, go to southsidemessengerphotos.shutterfly.com

Despite the rain and clouds that kept the skies overcast last Friday, the Solar Car Competition that was held at Southside Virginia Community College was a success, in more ways than one. The competition was the culmination of a program called Dream It Do It Virginia that SVCC has implemented over the last three summers. The aim of the program is to help at risk youth living in central and southside Virginia by teaching them skills they may otherwise never learn. Students attend classes that teach life skills such as resume writing, job interviewing and financial skills along with the curriculum that is part of that year’s program. The class at SVCC this session taught students the rudiments of harnessing the sun’s energy and converting it into controllable solar energy. The class was divided into teams of two and three people. Each team assembled a wooden solar powered car that they then tested outside. The rain on Friday did move the venue indoors; however, the teams actually got a bonus because of it. They had to figure out how to switch their power sources to electric motors with battery packs. Everybody then set up in the cafeteria and did timed runs with their cars. After the time trials the entire group moved to one of the laboratories. Each team, using more skills from the class, gave a power point presentation on their car and the strategies they used in its construction. The overall winner of the competition was the team of Marquette Ellison, a recent graduate of Amelia High School and Abdul Kareem, a resident of Charlotte County. Scott Edmonds, the Assistant Professor of Engineering at SVCC, explained during the power point presentation, “This is a grant program. We have had great success with it.” He went on to say, “This is a great way to show our youth the many great jobs that are within their reach if they try.”  

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