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MESA teams participate in regionals, prepare for state competition | details

Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) teams recently competed in the regional Mathematics, Engineering and Science Achievement (MESA) Showcase held April 1 at North Point High School. Overall winners were selected at the elementary-, middle- and high-school levels.

Projects challenge participants’ know-how and imagination. “We get to do things that we haven’t done before,” Grace Colbert, a Billingsley Elementary School fourth grader, said. “You can make friends and make creations,” Colbert’s teammate, Billingsley fourth grader Nashaun Jones, added. “And maybe we can make something that will make us famous.” Jones and Colbert were on a team that designed a mobile app to help hearing people better communicate with people who are deaf or hard of hearing.

Teams that earned a first-place award at the Charles County regional event advance to the state-level competition. The advancing teams are from JP Ryon, Walter J. Mitchell and William A. Diggs elementary schools; Matthew Henson and Piccowaxen middle schools; and La Plata and North Point high schools. They advance to the virtual state showcase set for May 7 hosted by the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory.

First-, second- and third-place teams in each challenge receive awards and one overall winner is chosen at each level. The teams that earn the most points throughout the competition are chosen as the overall winners.

Elementary-school teams compete in four challenges: Mobile App, Storybook Theme Park Ride, Wearable Technology and Expanding Structure.

The following teams placed at the elementary-school level:

Mobile App:

  • JP Ryon, first place;
  • Mitchell, second place; and
  • Mary B. Neal Elementary School, third place.

Storybook Theme Park Ride:

  • Mitchell, first place; and
  • Ryon, second place.

Wearable Technology:

  • Diggs, first place;
  • Ryon, second place; and
  • Malcolm Elementary School, third place.

Expanding Structure:

  • Diggs, first place;
  • Dr. Thomas L. Higdon Elementary School, second place; and
  • Malcolm, third place.

Middle-school teams compete in four challenges: Mobile App, Wearable Technology, Expanding Structure and the National Engineering Design Competition (NEDC).

The following teams placed at the middle-school level:

Mobile App:

  • Henson, first place;
  • Theodore G. Davis Middle School; second place, and
  • Piccowaxen, third place.

Wearable Technology:

  • Piccowaxen, first place;
  • Henson, second place; and
  • General Smallwood Middle School, third place.

Expanding Structure:

  • Piccowaxen, first place; and
  • Davis, second place.


  • Piccowaxen, first place; and
  • Henson, second place.

High-school teams also compete in four challenges: Mobile App, Wearable Technology, Expanding Structure; and NEDC.

The following teams placed at the high-school level:

Mobile App:

  • North Point, first place.

Wearable Technology:

Expanding Structure:


  • North Point, first place.

CCPS teams compete as a separate Maryland MESA region due to a high level of participation. Maryland MESA is designed to prepare students for academic and professional careers in mathematics, engineering, science and technology.

The program’s goals are to increase the number of engineers, scientists, mathematicians and related professionals at technical and management levels; and to serve as a driving force in encouraging and assisting minorities and females in achieving success in these fields. For more information about MESA, go to https://secwww.jhuapl.edu/MESA/.

About CCPS

Charles County Public Schools provides 27,000 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 37 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.

The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability in its programmes, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Kathy Kiessling, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Nikial M. Majors, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (employees/ adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, PO Box 2770, La Plata, MD 20646; 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.

CCPS provides nondiscriminatory equal access to school in accordance with its Use of Facilities facilities rules to designated youth groups (including, but not limited to, the Boy Scouts).


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