Petroleum Academies » Westside High School
Westside Engineering & Geosciences Academy (WEGA)
By: Sarah Castro, Dean of Westside
WEGAns began a new semester preparing for the IPAA / PESA Speaking Competition. The teams first had to compete in front of judges on January 16 and 17. Three teams from each grade level were chosen to compete with the three other IPAA Academies on Saturday, January 26, at Anadarko in The Woodlands. Two ninth grade teams won 1st and 2nd places. One eleventh grade team won an Honorable Mention. Two twelfth grade teams won 2nd and 3rd places. Overall, the students researched well and will be prepared for a greater showing in 2014.
Seniors Joshua Lachner, Yuki Oji, and Lucas Bazemore, had the privilege of attending the IPAA / PESA Scholarship Banquet on Tuesday, February 5, at the Houston Country Club. Joshua, who had to present via video, as he was at Close-Up in Washington DC, received an $8000 scholarship. Yuki and Lucas were honored to receive $5000 scholarships each. The audience was delighted by a beautiful rendition of "God Bless America" sung by Junior Sarah Wong.
WEGA juniors submitted their resumes and applications and began externship interviews in February. The professional interview, conducted by alumni parent and retired Shell geologist, Letha Slagle, provides juniors with a rare opportunity to learn how to improve their interview, resume, and essay writing skills.
WEGA will enter three teams in the Shell Eco-Marathon Americas 2013 on April 5-7 at Discovery Green. The teams were honored to be asked to present to Shell engineers on Thursday, February 21, at the Westhollow Technical Center in celebration of Engineering Week. Taking away many valuable lessons about working in teams and developing new technologies, the teams were excited by the opportunity to learn from Shell engineers. The engineers also gave insight into the WEGA car designs and functionality. The gas car team, led by Hunter Heil, has revamped their aluminum framed vehicle, which will be driven by Emily Guerra. Two newly designed bamboo-framed, electric cars will also compete. WEGA Gents Team Captain, Timothy Huang, and League of WEGA Team Captain, Brian Canlas, are aiming to repeat a win of the Best Eco-Design.
Along with sponsoring the three cars, IPAA / PESA will provide a bus for Westside Wolves to attend the competition on Saturday, April 6. We are excited to be one of the only Houston area high schools to compete in the Shell Eco-Marathon Americas. Go Wolves!