WiTT K-12 Teacher Grant funds trip to TSA State Leadership Conference

Fri, April 28, 2023 12:58 PM | Anonymous

Congratulations to the Antioch High School Technology School Association (TSA) chapter for its recent placements at the Tennessee TSA State Leadership Conference at the end of March! 

In the fall, the Antioch High School TSA chapter received a $2,500 grant from WiTT through the K-12 Teacher Grant. 

Hallie Trauger, career and technical education teacher and TSA advisor, said that the majority of students said their family could afford to pay between $0 and $100 toward the $275 attendance cost. 

“The K-12 Teacher Grant covered our registration fees and complemented our aggressive fundraising program to bring the cost per student down to $60, which students could offset through chocolate sales to make the trip free if needed,” Trauger said. “The grant assistance ensured that the conference was financially accessible for all the students in our chapter who qualified based on their academics and their TSA projects.”

The grant funded 24 students’ registration fees and many placed very competitively in 22 different competitions at the state conference. The students earned: 

Semifinalist - VEX Robotics

Semifinalist - Architecture Design

Semifinalist - Biotechnology

Semifinalist - Data Science & Analytics

3rd Place - Animatronics 

3rd Place - Extemporaneous Speech

4th Place - Video Game Design

4th Place - Music Production

This impressive showing has granted 10 students the opportunity to compete in several of these competitions at the TSA National Conference June 28 - July 2 in Louisville, Kentucky. The Video Game Design, Animatronics, Music Production, Extemporaneous Speech and VEX Robotics teams are national qualifiers, and students will also compete in Biotechnology, On-Demand Video, and Technology Problem Solving while at the national conference. 

“We are so grateful for WiTT's support, which helped to make the trip accessible so that every student could attend and showcase their [talent] without cost presenting a barrier to participation,” Trauger said. 

The Tennessee TSA State Leadership Conference ignites student passion for technology through collaboration and leadership via general sessions, workshops and competitive events. This year’s theme, “Find Your Voice,” encouraged personal exploration and confidence building. 

More about the student projects:

The Antioch High School TSA chapter competed in 22 different competitions, spanning several different types. Some competitions required prior completion and the accompaniment of a portfolio documenting the design process, which some were completed on site in scenarios where students bring their problem-solving and skills to compete. 

Completed on site:

CAD Engineering 

Debating Technological Issues 

Essays on Technology 

Extemporaneous Speech (3rd place)

On-Demand Video 

Prepared Presentation 

Technology Problem-Solving 

Completed off-site: 

Animatronics (3rd place) — This team built an Arduino-powered display of an alligator that included light, sound and motion. 

Architecture Design (Semifinalist) — This team created floor plans and a 3D model for a model assisted living facility with mentorship from a local professional architect. 

Biotechnology (Semifinalist) — This team created a display and portfolio about how to manage food and nurture for a future trip to Mars. 

Children’s Stories — This team developed, illustrated and bound a book called “The Leaf Project,” which depicted a young girl’s exploration of STEAM and friendship through a biology field trip. 

Data Science & Analytics (Semifinalist) — This team developed a research project about social media and privacy. They presented their results in a scientific poster and portfolio. 

Music Production (4th place) — This team created and recorded an original metal song with guitar, bass and vocals about TSA and robots. 

Video Game Design (4th place) — This team designed and coded an original adventure game with student-developed characters, backgrounds and game-play in Game Maker. 

VEX Robotics (Semifinalist) — This team built and coded a robot that they compete with through the year at local VEX Robotics tournaments. This robot was taken to the State Leadership Conference where they made it to the semi-final elimination round. 

More about the K-12 Teacher Grant: 

The K-12 Teacher Grant is designed to support Middle Tennessee K-12 teachers who are applying innovative ideas in the classroom that foster interest in technology and technology careers. 

Through this program, teachers may submit requests for funding related to professional development or classroom supplies. Applications are reviewed quarterly, and the next deadline is June 30. 

Apply and learn more
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