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Environment, STEM

Veritas Homeschoolers’ Student Team Wins AZ Region STEM Competition



Phoenix, AZ: “Waste is a misplaced resource.” This is one of the phrases that Team Veritas Ville uses to describe their city of the future, Alegria, which, in Portuguese means joy.


Team Veritas Ville (Alegria) left to right: Chloe Blomquist, Skene Black, Adriana Baniecki (presenter), Edward Wang, Madyison Nichols (presenter), Jeremy Graunke (presenter), Matthew Graunke – engineer mentor, Kathryn Graunke – teacher

One thing that each team that participated in this year’s competition needed to do was submit a 1,500-word essay describing the unique attributes of their city and provide a solution to this year’s waste management challenge: Waste Not, Want Not.

The team of middle school students from Veritas Homeschoolers set about to revive an ailing Rio de Janeiro, 150 years into the future. At just six months away from the start of the summer 2016 Olympics, the City of Rio de Janeiro must address several key social and environmental challenges that pose a threat to one of the largest sporting events in the world. Guanabara Bay made international headlines due to its polluted waters, filled with raw sewage and massive amounts of garbage.

As explained by Team Veritas Ville, the City of Alegria will have a well-defined waste management system that combines food delivery with trash collection. Lifts similar to dumbwaiters will deliver food to residents who live in high rise condos, and trash will be collected via chutes and recycled or chemically altered. The team proposes to make their city waste free by using a number of approaches to recycling including refuse, reduce, reuse, repurpose, and recycle.

One of the attributes that future residents of the City of Rio de Janeiro might appreciate is that their future city will have good air quality. This will be accomplished by planting lots of trees and other green foliage throughout the city and on roof tops, and restricting industry within the city to those that meet non-polluting standards. Residents will use a mag-lev sky train for their transportation needs.

Team members will spend the next three weeks doing more research on their city to answer questions that judges may ask during the National Future City Competition, February 12 – 17, 2016, in Washington, DC.

More than 40,000 students from 1,350 middle schools typically participate nationwide in the regional competitions. The winning team from each qualifying regional competition receives a trip to the Future City National Finals.

This STEM competition for middle school students was held on Saturday, January 23, 2016 on the campus of Arizona State University. A complete list of all award winners for the AZ Region will be published soon.

For information regarding this news release, contact Vi Brown at 480.205.2616 M or v.brown@futurecityarizona.org, or go to www.futurecityarizona.org.

About the Future City Competition: The Future City Competition is a national program for middle school students. It is sponsored by the engineering community to promote and grow a dynamic engineering profession critical to public health, safety, and welfare. The program promotes math, science, and engineering through hands-on, real world applications and is open to all public, private and parochial schools. The National Finals of the Future City Competition are a featured event during National Engineers Week with students from across the country competing in Washington, D.C. for awards and prizes. Together we meet a vital need: introducing students, parents, and educators to engineering, engaging them in hands-on engineering experiences, and making science and math relevant.

About Vi Brown

Vi is principal and CEO of Prophecy Consulting Group, LLC, an Arizona firm that provides business and engineering services to private and public clients. Prior to establishing her consulting practice in 2001, Vi worked with Motorola, Maricopa County Government, Pacific Gas & Electric, CH2M Hill, and Procter & Gamble. As an adjunct faculty member, Vi teaches undergraduate calculus classes and graduate level environmental courses. She is also a professional speaker.

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