THE Commonwealth of Northern Marianas Islands Aeronautics team won in the 2018 Pacific Statewide Real World Design Challenge.
Jeaniffer Cubangbang, Marianas High School Cooperative Education and Career Technical Education teacher and STEM adviser, said the team, which is composed of MHS Students, receive official notice on Jan. 23 that they have won the regional competition, beating Guam and American Samoa.
“So first it goes to the CNMI level, which we won. Then, we compete with Pacific-statewide, participated by students from CNMI, Guam and American Samoa. As of yesterday, we have official notice that we also won the Pacific region, beating Guam. This is our seven consecutive year of winning the island-wide and Pacific statewide,” Cubangbang announced.
Cubangbang and MHS principal Cherlyn Cabrera and interim education commissioner Glenn Muna recognized the CNMI Aeronautics team Chenoa Bunts-Anderson, Ian Cataluna, Mimi Sakano, Daniel Villarmero, Eun Jun Wang, Gaeun Melody Yang for their achievement.
Cubangbang said the team will go to Washington, D.C. on April 21 to compete nationally. He added that if they win in the national they will move up to international competition.
The awarding ceremony was held at the MHS J-014 room on Wednesday morning.
“We are very proud to present our RWDC winners. MHS continues to produce a lot of winners and we are very proud of them. We want to thank all our coaches and mentors for helping and working with our students,” Muna said.
Muna, an MHS alumnus, said CNMI has won nationwide competition twice and it is the seventh year that CNMI won the regional competition.
“Students worked really hard. Many times they stay up all night. I wish them the best and I hope they will bring home the trophy,” he added.
Cabrera thanked Cubangbang and other teachers who gave support to students and their parents.
“We don’t see how much support parents give, but they give a lot because they let their students study for hours.”
She said their students are active in participating in the competition “because they want to stretch themselves and they want to challenge themselves.”
“We want MHS to be that kind of environment, a place where people challenge themselves academically, challenge themselves to explore science, technology, engineering and math,” she said.
In an interview with project manager Chenoa Bunts-Anderson and Daniel Villarmero, systems and test engineer; said their project is designing an agricultural drone that would be able to efficiently detect pests and kill those pests through spraying and therefore producing more food and sustaining the population growth.
“At first we were given a challenge which is to solve a problem in the world. This year the problem was we don’t have enough food. With the rate our population is growing and how much we produced, in 50 years a lot of people will be starving. We wanted to build and design an agricultural drone,” Bunts-Anderson said.
Bunts-Anderson and Villarmero co-designed the aircraft. They started the project in August last year.
“We spent a lot of time brainstorming, thinking about how we will come out with this. We reach out to our mentors, we get a lot of expertise, we grow on our knowledge base and then we start designing our aircraft,” Bunts-Anderson said.
They also deal on writing an 80-page notebook about their project. They also do a 3D CAD model, a computerized 3D version of the actual aircraft and put it in simulation.
Villarmero said they have to do a lot of calculations to prove that when it is built it can actually do that job. The challenge they encountered was designing the aircraft.
“We had a design engineer for three years which left last year, Robert Malate. That was the gap that we need to fill in. We did train someone but for some reason he has to leave,” Bunts-Anderson said.
However, they are excited to go to Washington, D.C. and meet the people who are in the competition.
The MHS also recognized Anjanette Jewel Cubangbang and Michaela Gatdula for winning the International Thespian Society Tech CNMI-wide competition.
“They have one more competition to win [regional competition] and they will go to Nebraska,” Cubangbang said.
The MHS also congratulated Julia Malate. She was given an invitation to apply at Westpoint, a military academy in the U.S.
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