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District 196 middle school teams fare well in Future City competition

A team of students from Scott Highlands Middle School finished fourth overall and four other teams of District 196 middle school students won special awards at the Minnesota Future City regional competition Jan. 18 at Dakota County Technical College.

Sponsored by the National Engineers Week Foundation, Future City is a national, project-based learning experience where middle school students imagine, research, design and build cities of the future that showcase their solutions to a citywide sustainability issue. This year's theme is Clean Water: Tap Into Tomorrow. Teams chose a threat to their city’s water supply and designed a resilient system to maintain a reliable supply of clean water.

Students work as a team with a teacher and engineer mentor to design their virtual city using SimCity software. They also research and write a 1,500-word essay about their city, build a tabletop scale model with recycled materials, develop a project plan and make a presentation to judges at the regional competition. Regional winners represent their region at the national finals held in Washington, D.C. each February.

The Ongaku No Machi team from Scott Highlands Middle (pictured) took fourth place in the overall competition. Members of the team areMegan Burri, Eshaan Jay, Vikraanth Murali, Ishaan Sahu, Shahaanaa Selvam, Claire Wick and Julia Wick.Teacher Theresa Back is their advisor and Leighton Deer from HGA served as their engineer mentor. 

The Inonder team from Scott Highlands won the award for Most Practical Design, awarded to the team that best considers practical implementation and sustainable use in their future city. Team members are Dylan Becker, Janet Behailu, Kyle Eull, Sai Gajjela, Isabella Koffi, Calder Lee, Avery Nielson and Sai Reddy. Back is their advisor and Deer is the team’s engineer mentor.  

The Casada team from Valley Middle School of STEM won the award for Best Industrial/Commercial Layout, awarded to the team that best integrates industrial and commercial aspects into the infrastructure of their city. Team members are  Madeleine Eng, Zoey Meier, Shannon Reilly and Ellen Stumbo.Teacher Sheri Gedlinske is the advisor and Ben Reilly of Drov Technologies is the team’s engineer mentor.

The Cyanla team from Valley Middle won the award for Most Innovative Power System, awarded to the city with an innovative power system that addresses reliability, disaster planning, environmental impact and cost effectiveness. Members of the team are Isabella Frutiger, Emma Jeske, Anthony Kurilov, Victoria Kurilov, Anh Nguyen andChase Sapletel. Gedlinske is their advisor and Reilly is the team’s engineer mentor.

The Tatooine team from Black Hawk Middle School won the award for Most Innovative Constructability, awarded to the city design that best identifies and removes obstacles to ensure timely construction, prevents errors and reduces cost overruns. Team members are Chloe Breen, Tyler Burbey, Sam Cohen, Owen Ford, Carter Larson, Tia Rao and Thuy-Sa Truong. Teacher David Herem is the advisor and Russ Matthys, director of Public Works for the city of Eagan, volunteers as the team’s engineer mentor.