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Croxteth students secure second place at prestigious STEM Challenge  

Teigan and Maisie, students from St John Bosco Arts College in Croxteth, recently secured an impressive second place in the prestigious Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) Northwest Challenge.  

The STEM Northwest Challenge, hosted at the University of Manchester, provides a platform for students across the North West to explore STEM topics and develop essential and transferrable skills such as teamwork and problem-solving.  

The event, which aims to showcase the importance of STEM-based subjects and how these can help shape the future workforce, welcomed eight teams of students from schools across the North West.  

The tough competition saw the two St John Bosco students join forces with students from Calday Grange Grammar School to represent Merseyside. 

The team were tasked with programming a robot to work out its way around a maze. The maze, which got progressively more challenging as the robot faced new obstacles, presented an opportunity for the students to think reactively and work together to solve problems.  

Colour and sound sensors were used to help navigate the maze and its many obstacles. Teigan and Maisie completed a series of tests to assess why something failed and developed solutions to resolve the issues.  

Once the testing phase was completed, Teigan and Maisie’s robot had to race against the opposing team’s robots to claim the winning spot. After narrowly missing out on first place, both students were commended by the event organisers for demonstrating excellent teamwork.  

Teigan said: “The whole experience was great, but it was challenging from the start. It was exciting when we overcame each challenge and obstacle; it was like lots of mini-wins!” 

After being awarded second place, both students shared how proud they were of the achievement. Maisie said: “We were awarded our certificate by the head of computer science at the University of Manchester, who shook our hand and congratulated us; it was an incredible experience. We were so happy.” 

The students explained how their science teacher, Mr Kirk, was the driving force behind them entering the esteemed competition. Teigan said: “Mr Kirk, our science teacher, encouraged us to get involved. The prospect of competing among the top schools in the region sounded really exciting.”  

Mr Edwards, the science technician at St John Bosco Arts College, attended the event with Teigan and Maisie. He said: “Teigan and Maisie represented the school incredibly. They demonstrated impressive skills and impeccable manners; they should be very proud.  

“They worked collectively as a team, and with their knowledge of computer science and the rapid advancements of artificial intelligence (AI), we know that the future is in safe hands with such clever minds.” 

Both students shared how the experience helped boost their confidence and that they would encourage other students to take part in similar competitions.  

Speaking on the achievement, headteacher at St John Bosco Arts College, Mr Darren Gidman, said: “We are committed to supporting each of our students to access new opportunities that challenge them to go outside their comfort zone and learn new skills. 

“A massive congratulations to Teigan and Maisie for this incredible achievement.” 

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