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2014 Transpower Neighbourhood Engineers Awards

Press Release – Transpower

An enviro-outdoor classroom and a device to detect children walking behind a vehicle are the big winners in the 2014 Transpower Neighbourhood Engineers Awards.29 October 2014

2014 Transpower Neighbourhood Engineers Awards

An “enviro-outdoor” classroom and a device to detect children walking behind a vehicle are the big winners in the 2014 Transpower Neighbourhood Engineers Awards.

The awards are an IPENZ initiative, voluntarily supported by Futureintech Ambassadors and IPENZ members. The aim is to get students to meet a need, problem or opportunity in their school or local community. Projects can be grand or simple. It can involve the whole school, a class, a group or just one student.

Leamington Primary School in Cambridge won the junior section with their project, “Tuatara Park” – an “enviro-outdoor” classroom where future students will be able to learn about native birds, plants and animals.

Mentored by Futureintech Ambassador Stuart McCready, a geotechnical engineer at Beca whose mother Gill is the teacher involved in the project, the students researched, planned and built the restoration project which will grow flora to attract native birds like the Fantail and Tui. The official opening will be in December, once the Tuatara sculpture is completed.

Mission Heights Junior College entered 11 projects in the competition. One of these, “Sixth Sense”, won the senior section and was mentored by mechatronic engineer and Futureintech Ambassador Matthew Ng-Wai-Shing from Altitude Aerospace.

The project looked at reducing driveway accidents as the team of students researched how to create an affordable reverse camera/sensor device. The students had to learn to write code and use a Raspberry Pi electronics kit and 3D printer. The end result was a prototype system which the team are keen to develop further.

Transpower Neighbourhood Engineers Awards Co-ordinator Kristal Kitto says projects like “Tuatara Park” and “Sixth Sense” demonstrate students using engineering to solve a challenge.

“It’s exciting to see the innovative thinking of the students, and also the collaboration they have with a local engineer and their teacher to work on a project which is close to home and relevant,” she says.
“The most important thing they learn is how engineering influences everything around us in our daily lives, and that engineers help shape the country.”

2014 Transpower Neighbourhood Engineers Awards recipients

A record 52 entries took part this year across the junior (Years 1–8) and senior (Years 9–13) sections, with $17,000 worth of prizes awarded to 25 teams.

Winners ($2,500 prize)
Junior: Leamington Primary School, Waikato (Tuatara Park)
Senior: Mission Heights Junior College, Auckland (Sixth Sense)

Merit ($1,500)
Junior: Christchurch South Intermediate, Christchurch (E-Key Assist)
Senior: Glendowie College, Auckland (Mobile Go Pro Camera)

Highly Commended ($1,000)
Junior: Tahuna School, Waikato (The Ultimate Chicken Coop)
Junior: Kimbolton School, Manawatu (Super Sound Garden)
Senior: Mission Heights Junior College, Auckland (Stray Cat Blues)
Senior: Tauranga Girls College, Bay of Plenty (Container Classroom)

Commended ($500)
Junior: Churchill Park School, Auckland (Water Tanks)
Junior: Sherwood Primary School, Auckland (The Secret Garden)
Junior: Tikokino School, Hawkes Bay (It’s a Sign)
Junior: Laingholm School, Auckland (Power Crisis)
Junior: St Leonards School, Auckland (Fale Samoa and Watering System)
Junior: Bruce McLaren, Auckland (McLaren Reborn)
Junior: Fairhall School, Marlborough (Solar Power Lighting)
Junior: Palmerston North Intermediate Normal School, Manawatu (Edible Garden)
Senior: St Mary’s College, Auckland (Tee Premie, Early Buds and Breathe Easy)
Senior: Hutt International Boys School, Wellington (Exploration Rover, Dirt Bike Trailer, Rat Rod Motorbike and Carbon Fibre Race Bike)


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