Mississippi State University Team Engages Students at Invention Convention

MSU Controls Group member, Trent Workman, educates students at Madison Crossing Elementary School about EcoCAR 2.

MSU Controls Group member, Trent Workman, educates students at Madison Crossing Elementary School about EcoCAR 2.

MSU team members traveled to Jackson, MS Friday, October 4th to attend “Invention Convention” at Madison Crossing Elementary School.

MSU’s Communications Manager, Claire Faccini and Controls Group member, Trent Workman, were able to speak to five different fifth grade classes about alternative fuel vehicles, the EcoCAR 2 competition, and MSU’s sustainability efforts. Not only did the team members educate the classes about Year Three of the competition and MSU’s progress, they were able to learn a few things about what fifth grade car buyers would like to see implemented in the future.

The following are some ideas for Year Three from Madison Crossing fifth graders:

“I would want a soda, coffee, and water machine, and a good looking car.”

“A bubble jet pack to have bubbles in the car.”

“A voice that tells jokes to you while you’re driving.”

Some students really thought outside of the box and used their brains creatively to come up with resourceful ideas that could really appeal to the next few generations of car buyers. Some ideas dealt with safety features, but a few unique ones stood out. When asked what they would like to see in MSU’s EcoCAR 2 vehicle, students answered:

“A playground.”

“A zoo.”

“A tornado shelter.”

The fifth graders at Madison Crossing put a lot of thought into how to refine the team’s vehicle and make it acceptable for all consumers. “Invention Convention” focuses on new and different ways to make things work while being creative at the same time. The kids were engaged and excited that they could help college student make something better through their inventive ideas, and the team was glad to hear from a generation that will one day be in their shoes. Lastly, the team’s favorite response of the day was:

“So, I’m 11…can I join the MSU EcoCAR 2 team?!”

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