Nevada County students participate in the ninth annual TechTest Jr. math competition
Students from 16 area schools participated last month in the ninth annual TechTest Jr. math competition, an event that brought bragging rights and prizes to the winners.
Around 120 of the top fifth through eighth graders gathered Feb. 25 through 28 at four locations to participate in the event, sponsored by the Sierra Economics and Science Foundation (SESF) and the Nevada County Superintendent of Schools office. The events were hosted by Telestream in Nevada City, AJA Video Systems in Grass Valley, the Nevada County Tech Hub and the Grass Valley Group, all providing lunch, demos and tours.
The students came from schools including Mount St. Mary Academy, Magnolia, Seven Hills, Lyman Gilmore, Forest Charter, NCSOA, Union Hill, Yuba River Charter, Chicago Park, Ready Springs, Grass Valley Charter, Alta Sierra, Arete, Williams Ranch and Alta Sierra. Prizes included robots, quadcopters, Snap Circuits and other STEM-related items.
TechTest Jr. is a math exam that tests critical-thinking and problem-solving skills. Aside from acknowledging students for their skills, it’s intended to promote the development of more critical thinking activities in the county and to help prepare them for future exams of this type, such as the SAT and ACT. It also helps students to prepare for the TechTest Merit Scholarship program in their senior year of high school, where they can compete for over $15,000 in college scholarships. For more information on the high school test, visit http://www.sesfoundation.org.
Holding the event at the local Tech Company sites was done to show the students the type of opportunities that lay ahead of them as a result of their proficiency in math and science. Telestream (Robin Guerra and Danielle Scallin) was host to the seventh and eighth grade students, providing tours of their facility and showing product demos. AJA Video Systems (Stacey Wiederhold, Bob Hudelson and Crescent Hiss) hosted fifth and sixth grade students and also provided product demos, tours and discussions. Gil Mathew’s team at the Nevada County Tech Hub and Remington Maxwell’s team from the Grass Valley Group hosted fifth through eighth graders and offered exciting demos, including virtual reality, green screening and video mixing boards.
TechTest Jr. is offered at no cost to participating students and is funded by donations and sponsorships by the Sierra Economics and Science Foundation (SESF), the county Superintendent of Schools Office and by local businesses. It was offered again this year as part of the county STEAM Expo and winners will be announced at the Expo on March 28.
If anyone or local businesses are interested in helping to support the 2021 TechTest Jr., please contact Dave Pistone at firstname.lastname@example.org. Anyone interested in getting a copy of this year’s exam (with answers) and previous years’ tests can visit the SESF webpage at http://www.sesfoundation.org/techtest-jr. and download the exams, or email Pistone to get them.
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