Arizona 2021


Phoenix, Arizona

Gerald the Dog educates youth to combat food insecurity in Arizona

PROJECT GOAL: To educate youth to grow their own vegetables as a way to empower them to develop healthier eating habits.

The old saying you are what you eat is very true. When children are fed a diet that focuses on nutritious foods, their overall physical and mental health improve. Unfortunately, one in six students in the Alhambra neighborhood of Phoenix, Arizona experience or are at risk of experiencing food insecurity. Furthermore, the locally available foods are usually not nutritious due to the high number of food deserts in the area. To address this issue, a team of young scholars created Gerald, a robot that will help students in grades 4-8 grow their own vegetables in a fun and simple way. Their goal is to educate and empower youth to develop healthier eating habits, which will positively affect their mental and physical health. Despite the pandemic, this design team reached out to several teachers in the Alhambra community and surveyed over 150 students. As a result, three teachers have committed to using Gerald with their classrooms in the Fall of 2021.

Jazmine Cordon, Michael Hernandez, Myla Dykes, Corey Dykespopup

TEAM MEMBERS: Jazmine Cordon, Michael Hernandez, Myla Dykes, Corey Dykes

TEAM ADVISOR(S): Michelle Jordan, Mia DeLaRosa

Sevilla Elementary School

Phoenix, Arizona

Light at Night

PROJECT GOAL: Create a user-friendly light that can be attached to a wheelchair so users can have the freedom to travel outside at nighttime.

Wheelchair users are only able to safely wheel during daylight. They have trouble traveling at night because it is too dark to see dangerous obstacles on the ground. To address this inequity, we have developed a solution called Light At Night to see the ground in front of them. Our solar-powered light is controlled by a remote that can be held or clipped on the armrest. Users can adjust the brightness level to increase safety.

Fiona Tran, Hannah Allenpopup

TEAM MEMBERS: Fiona Tran, Hannah Allen

TEAM ADVISOR(S): Jamille Warren, Mia DeLaRosa

Rudy McCormick, Arizona 2021 MESA Director | Manny Leon, Bill Pike, Rules Committee | State Website

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