The annual Boeing Engineering Challenge was held at the gymnasium at Washington University in St. Louis on 29 April 2014 and was attended by 27 area high school teams. The three teams from Marquette Catholic High School Engineering Class took 1st, 2nd, and 3rd overall in the Boeing Engineering Challenge Division 1. They placed 1st and 2nd in Max Time Aloft and placed 1st and 2nd in Straightest Flight Path. They placed 2nd and 3rd in Longest Distance and 2nd and 3rd in Accuracy. The teams from Marquette won more awards than any other single school in the history of the competition.
Seniors, Luke Vest, Luke Drennan, Avery Johnson and Abby Porter formed the team called the “3:15s.” Their team placed first overall in Division 1. Second place overall was the team made up of Austin Siener, Amy Finke, Chris Fischer and Nick Hicks called the UFO’s. The “ Starscream” team came in first in the Maximum Time Aloft category and was made up of seniors Kristin Grace, Paul Ries, Mitchell DuMoulin and Karley Willmann. The Wright Team came in second in the Straightest Flight Path and 3rd overall and was represented by Brandon Sweeney, Zach Ross, Kateri Vaughn and Michael Schneider. These students are from Alton, Godfrey, Granite City and Florissant, MO.
Mrs. Michele Sands, teaches the “Infinity Project” at Marquette which she started in 2007. The “Infinity Project” was designed by SMU in Dallas for high schools to get more students interested in engineering. With the help of Dr. Lawrence Burch, Marquette class of 1959 and former NASA Engineer, projects have been incorporated into the class to give the students a sense of the engineering profession. “These students learned the value of hard work and I am proud of their accomplishment. I know they will do great things as they head towards college,” said Mrs. Michele Sands.
Throughout the school year, the class assembles and launches rockets, designs and builds speakers, builds trebuchets, and competes at the Lewis and Clark Community College trebuchet contest. This is their first year working with gliders in the Boeing Challenge.
“This award reflects greatly on Marquette Catholic High School’s dedication and support to Science, Technology, Engineering and Math; and the high quality of your teaching and administrative staff,” said Derek Bernett, Manager, P-8 Integration and Test, Boeing Pilot Training Devices.