A team of Madison High School students has built a rocket that the group will launch this weekend in Washington, D.C. at the world’s largest model rocket contest known as the Team America Rocketry Challenge.
The students, who are members of the “Sensation Station” rocket club at Madison, are among only 100 school teams from across the country to qualify to compete in the national finals of the challenge. This year’s challenge requires students to build and launch a rocket carrying two eggs at exactly 850 feet high. The rocket must remain in flight for 44 to 46 seconds and return with no cracks either both egg.
“I am so proud of the Madison High School rocket club team,” said HISD Board of Education Trustee Wanda Adams, who represents the school. “They are outstanding representatives of our school district, exemplifying qualities required for success: hard work, perseverance, and studious preparation. The sky is the limit for these talented students. Our hopes for them soar higher than their rocket this weekend, much like their unlimited potential for the future. I wish them the best of luck.”
The six team members competing in the contest are Cristhian Benavides, Leonel Henrriquez, Justin King, Dennis Ngyuen, Cristian Ramirez, and Kelon Tidwell. Students Christina Hillard and Angel Reyes also helped build the rocket.
Sponsored by the Aerospace Industries Association, the National Association of Rocketry, and more than 20 industry partners, the contest aims to encourage students to study science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). Nearly 800 teams from all 50 states entered this year’s contest.
The teams will compete for prizes and scholarships totaling more than $100,000. The winning team will travel to the Farnborough International Air Show in London, courtesy of the Raytheon Company, to compete in the International Rocketry Challenge with teams from France, the United Kingdom and Japan.
“I am very proud of our rocket team, their enthusiasm, and hard work,” said Madison physics teacher Dr. Maqsuda Afroz who coordinates the rocket club. “This is an enormous achievement, which I hope will serve as an inspiration to all of our students.”