High school computer science students win World Wide Technology STEM Student Forum

A group of Pattonville High School computer science students won the 2024 World Wide Technology STEM Student Forum claiming a $10,000 first place prize for developing an idea for a program that will assist students in selecting classes that are beneficial during their high school years and college. The program, Anchor, is essentially an AI academic advisor.

“I love that the competition gives all students the chance to experience real-life problems. It provides them with valuable insights into the workings of an actual business environment," said PLTW (Project Lead the Way) teacher and team ambassador Stephanie Carson. "Our students are exhilarated to see their AI projects come to life and have grown tremendously through the experience of working alongside their peers, with expert guidance from WWT professionals. Congratulations to each student and school for participating in this impactful experience." 

This is the eighth year of the competition and the fifth time that computer science students participated. The win marks the third time Pattonville High School has won the Forum. In 2019, a group of students overhauled a supply closet for students in need building a website and providing a better user experience and in 2022 students created a project that promoted students' sense of belonging by helping staff members learn more about their students, including how to say their names correctly.

This year, participating students were challenged to create a technical solution that leveraged AI responsibly and ethically while addressing a problem at their schools or improving the academic experiences of students and staff. 

"Having the privilege to mentor Pattonville High School students, I found the experience to be effortless, thanks to the harmony between Pattonville teachers and administration in embracing the core values of WWT in their educational methods," said WWT Mentor Arif Rahman. "Witnessing the students' commitment, innovative thinking and swift execution of ideas into a tangible product within weeks left a profound impression on me. Their dedication and diligence undoubtedly contributed to their remarkable achievements."

There were 18 teams in this year’s competition and each team was paired with a WWT employee to help mentor them through the process. After submitting a project video, five schools reached the finals and presented their idea at WWT’s global headquarters in St. Louis on March 9. The five finalists included Bayless High School, Jennings Senior High and College Prep Academy, Parkway Spark!, Pattonville and Troy Buchanan High School.

Members of the team included Isaac Blassingame, Abdukodir Djuraev, Sai Dorasani, Fred Kadima, Allyson Maue, Gregory Oliver, Bryce Reynolds, Tyren Thompson, Faisal Yousif and Zachary Zarosa. They are all in Carson’s Computer Science Capstone 2 class.

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