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PHOTO 1 - THE WINNER (UTRGV Photo by David Pike)

UTRGV Photo by David Pike

For the second consecutive year, Harlingen High School earned top honors at the U.S. Navy SeaPerch Challenge, held Friday, Oct. 6, at the Harlingen CISD Aquatic Center.

The annual event, attended by teams across the Rio Grande Valley, is part of UTRGV’s Hispanic Engineering, Science and Technology Week.

Though the HHS team had a late start, they worked meticulously to build a Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) with unparalleled skill.

“We only had three weeks to prepare,” said HHS Engineering Club sponsor Paul Tenison. “We worked after school every day from 4 to 6 p.m. and practiced at the pool. I am thrilled for these students. They worked really hard, and they deserved it.”

HHS will advance to the international SeaPerch Competition to be held in May 2018 with the hopes of placing in the top 10.

Senior Ryan Arnold, club president, is now a seasoned competitor from last year’s winning team.

“It feels pretty awesome to have won,” Arnold said. “I wasn’t sure if we were going to get a good score or not, and I was kind of stressed out, but I am excited to go to internationals again, I really want us to do well.”

In this challenge, teams took on the task of building an underwater ROV that could successfully overcome a series of challenges. They also went through an interview process where they had the opportunity to discuss the design of their robot as well as their application of STEM concepts.

SeaPerch aims to inspire students to consider the STEM fields as a future career choice and opens their eyes to the opportunities that are available through the Navy.

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