On Sept. 25, juniors Shreya Santhanagopalan and Rashi Kejriwal were commended by Academic Career Technical Education (ACTE) Executive Director LeAnn Wilson, Howard County Superintendent Dr. Michael J. Martirano, and Mt. Hebron Principal Dr. Joelle Miller on their winning design of the 2018 ACTE trophy.
Every year, ACTE awards individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the Career and Technical Education field. The trophy design for these awards is selected through a contest, and this year, Santhanagopalan and Kejriwal’s design was chosen.
Santhanagopalan and Kejriwal, who were sophomores when they submitted their entry, designed the trophy in two parts — the stand (bottom) and the head (top). To create their final design, the girls compared different 3-D sketches of top and bottom designs to find which pairing looked best together.
After the winning design has been selected, Stratasys, a manufacturer of 3D printers and 3D production systems and a partner of the trophy design contest with ACTE, uses a 3D printer to create the trophies that will be awarded to the ACTE winners.
For their winning design, Santhanagopalan and Kejriwal will each receive a $500 scholarship, a 3D-printed copy of their award, a one-year complimentary ACTE membership for themselves and Career Technology Education teacher Mr. David Lucania, a recognition in ACTE’s promotional channels and Techniques magazine, and a trip to San Antonio, Texas to be honored at the ACTE awards banquet. Mt. Hebron will also receive a free one-year lease of a 3D printer, courtesy of Stratasys.
Mr. Lucania complimented the students as “amazing, dedicated and hardworking,” he said.
“Since they joined the class during freshman year, they were always the top two in the class,” said Mr. Lucania. “Technically, they did this entire competition during their sophomore year. That’s amazing.”
“The Student Trophy Design Contest has successfully helped to promote the next generation of American innovators, entrepreneurs, engineers, and more,” said Wilson in ACTE’s article of the trophy winners. “Kejriwal and Santhanagopalan’s outstanding achievements, and their passion for CTE, are further evidence of the role CTE plays in maintaining and growing America’s role in the global economy.”
According to ACTE’s website, a few of the awards the ACTE presents include Teacher of the Year, Administrator of the year, Post-Secondary Teacher of the Year, Career Guidance Awards. One of their most prominent awards is the Carl Perkins Community service award, which according to ACTE’s website, is “an award presented to people who use CTE to make a significant impact on their community and demonstrate leadership in programs and activities that promote student involvement in community service.”
Santhanagopalan and Kejriwal are both familiar with winning nationwide contests, having also won the 2018 Project Lead the Way Engineering Design Competition by submitting a research project. According to an interview with the ACTE, both students hope to inspire future generations to join the STEM field and encourage others to achieve their dreams.