AFRL Challenge Competition underway

Published Apr 26, 2016 at 4:00pm

Teams from eight area high schools are taking part in the 8th annual Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) Challenge Competition this week at the Griffiss Institute, in conjunction with sponsor AT&T.

The competition is a STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) initiative, geared to provide a realistic view of “high-tech problems the nation is facing today, and how engineers and researchers go about dissecting and solving these problems,” the institute said.

The teams, consisting of two students and a teacher, have been given a “challenge problem,” and have four days to solve it, the institute said.

Rome AFRL Information Directorate engineers and scientists are on hand to answer questions regarding the challenge problem throughout the week, the institute added. This year’s challenge is being developed by Rome AFRL’s Information Exploitation & Operations Division.

An awards ceremony will be held Friday. Among the high school teams participating: Oriskany, Westmoreland, New York Mills, Proctor of Utica, Holy Cross Academy of Oneida, Brookfield, Frankfort-Schuyler, and Central Valley Academy.

​Judges for the competition include Donald Hanson, former director of the Rome AFRL who is retired; Kevin Hanna, AT&T regional director, external affairs; Regan Johnson, director of operations, Griffiss Institute; and Joseph Stanton, software engineer, BAE Systems.

Winners of the competition will be awarded paid summer internships at local technology organizations, plus other prizes.