Pictured, from left, are Katie Wiest; Nikita Jayaprakash; Alyssa Chen; and Amador Valley High School PLTW engineering teacher and coach, Tony Dennis. (Not pictured: Fellow Amador PLTW engineering teacher and coach Laurie James)

On April 13, a team of three Amador Valley High School freshmen, Alyssa Chen, Nikita Jayaprakash, and Katie Wiest, placed second out of 15 teams from 14 high schools around the Bay Area at the 2019 Chevron Design Challenge East Bay Regionals Event. This all-day engineering design competition was sponsored by Chevron and Project Lead The Way. Amador Valley High School and the Pleasanton Unified School District served as the event host.

The team, which is coached by Amador PLTW Engineering teachers, Tony Dennis and Laurie James, will represent Amador at the Chevron Design Challenge State Finals in Bakersfield on May 4.

Each of the team members received a certificate and a $100 Visa gift card. Chevron also provided the team with $1300 towards expenses for their trip to the state finals event.

The Chevron Design Challenge is a one-day event where students gather to complete a rigorous engineering design challenge. Teams are composed of three students, all of whom have completed or are currently enrolled in a Project Lead The Way Introduction to Engineering Design or Introduction to Design class. None of the team members can have competed in the Chevron Design Challenge before. Teams have the entire day to work together and create an original design that meets the design specifications given. At various times during the day, the teams will be required to submit sketches, assembly drawings, parts drawings, and an exploded view with parts list for judging. At the end of the day, they will give a short presentation of their design to a panel of industry judges.