Engineering Projects, More Than Just Projects

John Ross

“Engineering Projects”: While that is technically the name of the period three class offered in Mr. Gallant’s room, it consists of far more than just projects. All of the students in the class are on teams building radio controlled cars to compete in a national championship organized by New York based Ten80 Education and the US Army.

You may be wondering how IHS started offering this class. Five years ago, Mr. Gallant stated he got “a random email from the army.” That “random email” contained instructions to fill out an application for a grant to provide the money for the school to offer a Ten80 class. He filled it out because he thought it couldn’t hurt, but didn’t expect to hear back right away.

A few weeks later he was surprised to hear that IHS had been granted the money to offer the class. So, four years ago the class began. During the first year, the class was a big success. However, money was needed to maintain the class the following year. After looking around for funding, the feofees agreed to pay for the majority of expenses for the next two years.

Throughout the years, IHS students have traveled to Charlotte, NC twice and Houston, TX once. This year the location of the national championships has yet to be announced. I also had the opportunity of talking to one of the current students in the class, Junior Connor Fauske. I asked him several questions including what else is needed for a team besides a car. He said, “You need people for a variety of different jobs, such as driving, mechanics, and team ID/PR.” This only shows that anyone can find a place in this class. It also proves there is more to the class than just driving cars around as most people perceive it. Connor also mentioned that his team, Turbo Clams Racing, was “Doing great” and that he was enjoying the class.

I also had the opportunity to ask him if he would recommend this class to any current sophomore or freshman. His response was “Yes, absolutely.” He then went on to explain how much experience you can get from one class by working on all of the different jobs, adding to the point that there is a place for everyone. Engineering Projects is offered every year as a full year class during period III by Mr. Gallant. If you are interested you should be sure to check this class out for next years schedule!     IMG_5353

The picture above shows Turbo Clams Racing’s car takes off from a start line during driver training.