| 10 July 2001
For Immediate Release
Maryland MESA Students Take Second Place In First National Competition
Maryland MESA (Mathematics, Engineering, Science Achievement) students from Northern High School in Owings, Md., took second place in the first national MESA competition, held on June 23 in Tucson, Ariz., and students from Northern Middle School, also of Owings, took fourth.
Using detailed specifications and their math and science knowledge, the Calvert County youths designed long distance gliders made of balsa wood and flew them in a competition that involved 14 schools from seven states. The glider designed by Northern High School traveled 110, feet and the middle school entry flew 69 feet. The Northern Middle and High school students won the statewide Maryland MESA competition in April.
Modeled after a California program, Maryland MESA was founded in 1976 by The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL), Laurel, Md., with two schools in Baltimore City. Now in its 25th year of continuous operation, the program has expanded to 155 elementary, middle and high schools statewide. It is designed to motivate students, especially ethnic minorities and females, and enhance their math, science and engineering skills. The Maryland students who competed were accompanied by Maryland MESA Director Robert H. Willis and Deputy Director Norma F. Boyd, both from APL.
"We were elated that the Maryland kids did so well in this national event and look forward to working with the MESA program in the future," says Boyd. "This year marks our 25th anniversary, and we have seen hundreds of students through high school graduation. Of these students, 84 percent were accepted into colleges and universities, and 79 percent of them majored in engineering, mathematics, or science."
Maryland MESA is supported by universities, industries, civic and educational organizations and is administered through a partnership of Maryland school systems, local colleges and universities, business and industry, government agencies, community organizations, parents and alumni. For more information visit http://www.jhuapl.edu/mesa/content.htm.
The Applied Physics Laboratory, a division of The Johns Hopkins University, uses innovative science and technology to solve complex problems that present critical challenges to the nation.