Career Connections at SAVY 2019: Session 1, Day 3 – Aerospace Engineering (Rising 7th)
Today would be one of the most frustrating and challenging days for some students. For others, it would be a simple stepping stone to pass under their feet. Today was the day that they brought their ideas – the theoretical design – to the real world. As teams started to acquire parts, many different quotes were overheard, “This is way smaller than I thought it would be!” “There’s no way we’re going to land safely with these…” “How are we even supposed to attach these!?”
The challenge of implementing their plans was at hand. Students were given raw stock: tubes, balsa wood, nylon string, plastic nose cones, and cardboard discs. From these items, they had to cut each and every part they had designed the day before and only had five hours to do so. There were moments of despair as fins broke again and again. There were moments of triumph as the last part was slipped into place. There were moments of pride as their rocket passed its stability test. Most importantly, there were moments of learning – the difficulty of time management, the scarcity of resources, the diversity of expectations and quality control, and the need for division by skill sets.
By the end of the day, all four teams waited as the glue dried on their vehicles. The sun was setting and the launch was hours away…