WHS places 5th at TSA nationals

Local STEM students excel during 2021 virtual conference

Daily Light report
Waxahachie ISD's team of Mariahelena Messina (foreign exchange student from Italy), Danil Pak, Emma Sears, Dhruval Rangrej and Nicole Holmberg placed fifth nationally in Scientific Vizualization during the virtual 2021 National TSA Conference recently. Additionally, Rangrej and Holmberg were inducted into the TSA National Honor Society.

Waxahachie ISD Engineering and Arts, Audio-Video Technology and Communication students participated in the Technical Student Association, a nationally recognized Career and Technical Student Organization, National Conference over the past two weeks. 

More than 5,000 middle school and high school students from across the country participated in the virtual 2021 National TSA Conference where Waxahachie High School placed fifth in competitive events. 

“Together Towards Tomorrow,” the conference theme, reflected TSA’s 43rd year of work to promote personal development, leadership, and education, and career opportunities in STEM through intra-curricular activities, competitions, and other programs. 

For the 2020-2021 school year, TSA adapted over 60 in-person STEM competitive events to accommodate a virtual environment in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The national conference competition began virtually in early May and ended on June 21. National top 10 competition finalists were announced during virtual conference general sessions, held June 23, 24, and 25. 

National placements by WHS students:  

Scientific Visualization (SciVis) — Participants used either 2D or 3D computer graphics tools and design processes to communicate, inform, analyze, and/or illustrate a STEM topic, idea, subject, or concept. 

Team members are: Danil Pak, Nicole Holmberg, Emma Sears, Dhruval Rangrej and Mariahelena Messina (foreign exchange student from Italy).

In addition to being involved in competitions, conference participants engaged in presentations from STEM speakers in education and industry elected the 2021-2022 national TSA officers and learned the names of award and scholarship recipients. 

Award recipients for WHS: 

The TSA Technology Honor Society recognizes TSA members who excel in academics, leadership, and service to their school and community. The TSA Technology Honor Society is an opportunity for student members to be recognized for their efforts and is designed to recognize TSA members who exemplify the high ideals of academics. 

The following students were inducted into the TSA National Honor Society: 

• Nicole Holmberg 

• Dhruval Rangrej

Other events students competed in and represented WHS: 

• Biotechnology Engineering - Nicole Holmberg, Joseph Jimenez, and Dhruval Rangrej 

• Future Tech Teacher - Nicole Holmberg 

• On-Demand Video - Isaac Major, Nicole Holmberg, Emma Sears, Dhruval Rangrej, and Mariahelena Messina 

• Forensics: Kadin Vire and Makenae Stone 

• Animatronics:  Samuel Burkhalter, Dhruval Rangrej, Kadin Vire, Makenae Stone, Nicole Holmberg, and Ethan Holmberg 

At the end of the conference, Sean Kuehn, 2020-2021 National TSA President shared, “TSA members from across the country rose to the occasion of competing in a virtual environment. Whether participating individually or as a team, students showed skill and expertise in areas such as Architecture and Construction Technology; Communications Technology; Computer Science and Information Technology, Leadership; and Manufacturing and Transportation Technology. 

“The very successful 2021 National TSA Conference was made possible by all who contributed to and participated in its competitions and activities, and it will be remembered in TSA history.”

TSA serves students enrolled in CTE courses aligned with these six career clusters: Arts, Audio-Video Technology and Communication; Architecture and Construction; Business Management and Administration; Information Technology; Manufacturing; and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math). Participants enjoy the experience of applying classroom and laboratory lessons in hands-on activities or competitive events.

For more information about TSA events at WHS, email Shyla Vire or James Parker or call (972) 923-4614.