An exciting, hands-on learning opportunity returns to Genesee Community College on Tuesday, May 20, as the College's ACE Programs hosts the 7th annual Tech Wars for students in the GLOW (Genesee, Livingston, Orleans and Wyoming Counties) region.
The event brings area middle and high school students to GCC's Batavia campus where they'll demonstrate their technology knowledge through innovative, mind-expanding competition. Students arrive on campus at 8:30 a.m. The competition runs from 9:30-12:30. The event is open to the public. Tech Wars had originally been scheduled for March 13 but was cancelled due to a snowstorm.
Students participate in a variety of challenges, generally in groups of two or more. Some of the competition involves bringing to campus projects they've been working on. This year students have been challenged to create a power-producing sculpture that utilizes renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, geothermal or hydroelectric. The sculpture is meant to be a functional piece of art, both utilitarian and aesthetically appealing.
Other competition involves working onsite, such as drawing with CAD (Computer Assisted Drafting) software. From a robotic tractor pull to CO2 truck designs and the ever popular sumo robots, Tech Wars offers fun and challenging events.
"Tech Wars gives students a chance to really exercise creative problem solving skills," said GCC Career Pathways Director Debbie Dunlevy. "Working in groups also helps them understand what it takes to collaborate successfully. And these challenges give them insight into what types of jobs they might pursue in the future."
Last year 450 students from 16 schools participated in Tech Wars.
Batavia's Graham Corporation and Liberty Pumps of Bergen return as Gold Level ($500+) sponsors this year along with Northeast Industrial Technologies, of Lima. Other sponsors include Ken Barrett Chevrolet Cadillac, Allen-Bailey Tag & Label, Lapp Insulators. OXBO, American Douglas Metals and Milherst Construction.
"The support of these businesses is essential to putting on this event," Dunlevy said. "We thank them for investing in what could be future employees."
The Career Pathways Program helps students explore career options and make a smooth transition from high school to college and ultimately to professional careers. Tech Wars is among several dynamic programs giving students the opportunity to learn hands-on, often in business settings and with industry professionals.