Indiana State University Newsroom



ISU technology competition draws valley students

November 10, 2009

Whether they were building towers or designing a clothing line, the students who participated in the 14th annual Tech TREK at Indiana State University had to use teamwork.

Nearly 500 high school students from Indiana and Illinois competed for first, second and third prizes in their respective categories, including "Tower of Terror" and "Duct Tape Fanatic."

Northview High School students Dustin Stevenson, Kodie Girton, Justin Rodgers and Landon Kaelber built a "Tower of Terror"-without talking. During the design part of the competition they could speak, but once they started building, all verbal communication ceased. They all agreed communicating without talking was rough, but they were able to rise to the challenge and take third place in the event.

Coni Stanley, a judge for the "Tower of Terror" competition, even gave the teams permission to text as a way of communication.

"I've only seen two people text," said Stanley, a program assistant for First Year Programs at ISU. "I did see one group use sign language."

For "Junkyard Genius," students worked together to build gliders from discarded plastic soda bottles, feathers, balloons and tape. The goal of the project was to design the glider that would fly the greatest distance with a toy soldier still inside. Paul Schulz, a sophomore technology engineering and education student, allowed the students to give their gliders a practice flight.

"Want to try her out, guys?" he asked the team from Evansville North High School, whose team members were starting to stress out with only 10 minutes left in the competition.

The team, comprised of Andrew Will, Ethan Purkiser and Collin Welle, took first place in that competition.

Other students from Evansville North created the fashion line "Designs in Every Direction" in "Duct Tape Fanatic." In this challenge, students were required to design a t-shirt that represented their high school-using duct tape, construction paper and pipe cleaners.

Ashley Sullivan, Kayla Dean and Julie Ringwall used teamwork to create their t-shirt, but that wasn't the hardest aspect of the competition.

"The challenging part was getting it done on time," Dean said.

Their design featured a compass rose on the front with the needle pointing north for Evansville North.

As part of "Duct Tape Fanatic," one student from each team had to model the apparel. This was Levi Hill's favorite part. His teammate, Aaron Brewer, modeled the Seymour High School design.

"We wanted to make it colorful, something that stood out," Brewer said.

While the team had some issues in the beginning stages, after a bit of teamwork, the pieces fell into place.

Alexis Strain, a senior technology education major, helped the students throughout the duct tape competition and facilitated the fashion show.

"My favorite parts of the competition are seeing all the kids doing the teamwork and working together and then the modeling, seeing them dance and get into it," Strain said.

In the afternoon, students competed in the technology bowl, a Jeopardy-style game with teams comprised of the top four students from each school. The Greenfield Central High School team of Jordan Kieth, Zach Langons, Ben Vowell and Tom Branstetter successfully defended the golden bowl traveling trophy.

The following schools placed in at least one event:

Area 30 Career Center
Clay City High School
Evansville North High School
Greenfield Central High School
Linton High School
Martinsville High School (Illinois)
New Palestine High School
North Vermillion High School
Northview High School
Owen Valley Community High School
Seymour High School
South Decatur High School
South Knox High School
South Vermillion High School
Sullivan High School
Terre Haute South Vigo High School
Triton Central High School
Western Boone High School

Other competition winners were:

Awesome Automaton -
• 1st place - Area 30 Career Center: Dakota Watson, Adam Peck, Gaige Anderson, Travis Barger, Matt Hall
• 2nd place - South Knox High School: Tyler Lett, Sam Scott, Geoffery Goodwin, Brayton Lamb
• 3rd place - South Vermillion High School: Domenic Nepote, Zack Rollins, Dylan Vrzina, Austin Thomas

Comical Contraption Challenge -
• 1st place - Triton Central High School: Drake Wuttke, Joe Renton, Nick Miller, Bill Turner, Tyler Burleson
• 2nd place - Owen Valley Community High School: Ronnie Shields, Nicholas Schmitter, Michael Jarman, Will Parmenter
• 3rd place - South Knox High School: Sam Maxwell, Priscilla Clark, Steven Alsobrook, Eric Prose

Design Dilemma -
• 1st place - Terre Haute South Vigo High School: Samantha Fox, Drew Morley, David Decker, Brad Kotela, Evan Myers
• 2nd place - Clay City High School: Brittany Richard, Parker Modesitt, Kole Smith, Taylor Walden
• 3rd place - Evansville North High School: Stephanie Wilhelm, Kendra Gerst, Sarah Lott, Meghan Martin

Duct Tape Fanatic -
• 1st place - Northview High School: Dakota Brown, Tanner Glenn, Josh Reisinger, Benita Wilkerson
• 2nd place - Clay City High School: Sean Sinders, Miranda Ingram, Caleb Randall, Carmela Roeschlein
• 3rd place - Triton Central High School: Dustin Kline, Guoxi Liu, Noah Elder, Bradley Mohr

Faster Dragster -
• 1st place - Evansville North High School: Ryan Wilkham, Ryan Mills, James Brave
• 2nd place - Owen Valley Community High School: Gabe Lacy, Katherine Milsho, Mitchell Price, Lucas Bird
• 3rd place - South Knox High School: Nick Westfall, Grant Gardner, Ethan Schutter

Graphic Groupies -
• 1st place - South Decatur High School: Courtney Apperson, Chellsay Hermesch, Emily Nobbe, Abby Barkdull
• 2nd place - Clay City High School: Dillan Orman, Danielle Gossage, Luke Hostetler, Sarah Tobias
• 3rd place - South Vermillion High School: Scott Wilmes, Jacob Jones, Lindsey Reed

Invent it! -
• 1st place - Western Boone High School: Jacob Lear, Cody Guernsey, Tanner Long, Josh Morris
• 2nd place - Northview High School: Samuel Dickison, Austin Eckstein, Taylor Smith, Chris Taylor
• 3rd place - Greenfield Central High School: Katie Peters, Tom Branstetter, Jacob Lingeman, Tera Fair

Junk Yard Genius -
• 1st place - Evansville North High School: Andrew Will, Ethan Purkiser, Collin Welle
• 2nd place - Seymour High School: Kyle McCauley, Mikey Robson, Derek Ridlen, Mitchell Reuter, Kirsten Brott
• 3rd place - Owen Valley Community High School: Lonnie Terry, Jack Petry, Jackson Ball, Abby Williams

Pack it or Crack it -
• 1st place - North Vermillion High School: Sylvia Crowder, Haeli Denton, Hillary Lively, Shelby Kingrey
• 2nd place - Northview High School: Patrick Durcholz, Caleb Mason, Brodie Riddell, Drake Stevenson
• 3rd place - Martinsville High School (Illinois): Austin Francis, Brenden Scott, Caitlin Dill

Rescue Mission -
• 1st place - Clay City High School: Aaron Kinser, Kacie Fritz, Conner Modesitt, Logan Higgins
• 2nd place - Area 30 Career Center: Brianna Eastwood, Kirsten Hardin, Nicole Cacciola, Hannah Cline, Michelle Oliverez
• 3rd place - Linton-Stockton High School: Evan Magni, Stefan Sparks, Kaleb Bridges, Tylor Scott, Jacob Rollins

Space Creators -
• 1st place - Terre Haute South Vigo High School: Russell McDaniel, Anthony Biddle, Andrea Boatman, Gage Wilkinson
• 2nd place - Seymour High School: Daniel Koester, Logan Carpenter, Gerson Astudillo, Iman Tucker
• 3rd place - Evansville High School: Justin Locher, Will Walls, Steven Vandergriff, Mitch Pearce

Structure of Strength -
• 1st place - Greenfield Central High School: Zach Langons, Ben Vowell, Austin Frazier
• 2nd place - Martinsville High School (Illinois): Josh Cribelar, Matt Sanders, Kayse Hays, Courtney Blankenbeker
• 3rd place - Owen Valley Community High School: David Merrifield, Mike Knapp, Jansen Hight, Joseph Bevers

Tower of Terror -
• 1st place - South Knox High School: Zach Nash, Cole Vleck, Ethan Masterson, Brian Martin
• 2nd place - North Vermillion High School: Cole Julick, Aaron Riggen, Steven Clouse
• 3rd place - Northview High School: Kodie Girton, Landon Kaelber, Justin Rodgers, Dustin Stevenson

Viral Video -
• 1st place - South Decatur High School: Andrew Brunni, Devon Hudson, Blake Bennett, Nolan Allen (also took Best in Show award)
• 2nd place - Area 30 Career Center: Josh Bonebrake, Wesley Anderson, Patrick Allen, Tyler Shoemaker

Technology Bowl -
• 1st place - Greenfield Central High School: Jordan Kieth, Zach Langons, Ben Vowell, Tom Branstetter
• 2nd place - New Palestine High School: Sam Fuller, Kyle Dickerson, Justin Cochran, Tom Agler
• 3rd place - Clay City High School: Caleb Randall, Logan Fry, Nick Johnson, Conner Modesitt


Writer: Lana Schrock, Indiana State University, media relations assistant, 812-237-3773 or lschrock1@indstate.edu