Students in Ohio Hi-Point's Advanced Manufacturing satellite program at Triad High School were announced as the winners of the first Champaign County Design Challenge after the county judging at Urbana University on November 2.

The winning group, consisting of Christopher Roy, Justin Overholser, Brian Ferguson, LiaMarie L., and Morgan Swiatek, beat out almost 100 students from West Liberty-Salem High School, Mechanicsburg High School, and Graham Middle School and High School.

The design challenge, which tasked students to design a Rube Goldberg contraption within a series of criteria and constraints, was spearheaded by Allison Koch, OHP Satellite Supervisor, with the support and assistance of local manufacturers.

"In years past, students have toured the different manufacturing facilities in Champaign County," said Koch, "This year we decided to do it a little differently and host a design challenge amongst all Champaign County schools with the manufacturers servings as mentors and judges for the contest."

Students had one month to create their Rube Goldberg contraption within the following parameters:

  • The contraption had to be only 8 steps, taking 20-120 seconds
  • There could be no cost to building the contraption
  • Only household items could be used
  • The final step needed to reveal the school mascot or logo
  • Use an item from the mentor

Each school district could have a maximum of four teams compete. The winner from each school district then competed at the county level at Urbana University.

After the judging, students participated in a Manufacturers Tradeshow to network and learn more about the industry.

"October is Manufacturing Month and we wanted to do something special this year," said Koch. "Manufacturing is such a critical component of our communities and it's important for students to be aware of the opportunities in the industry as well as how the industry is quickly adapting to the technology demands of today."