Troup County students build race cars for KIA sponsored STEM competition

LaGrange Bureau

LaGRANGE, Ga. (WRBL) – KIA Motors Manufacturing Georgia is boosting STEM learning for Troup County students. On April 17, 2021 KIA is sponsoring the first KIA Spring Fever Goblin Rally for elementary students.

KIA donated $25,000 to the event which has allowed students from six different schools to build battery- powered cars. The event will be hosted by Troup County for the first time at Long Cane Middle School. The car that circles the racetrack the most, wins.

“Well some of the details you have to do is you have to know how to use the tools and you have to know what you’re doing so you can work with your teammates to get the car built,” said Nahlia Poole, a fifth grader at Rosemont Elementary School.

Rosemont Elementary School will participate in the event. They were second in the nation last year but their season was cut short due to COVID- 19.

In addition to help from sponsors like KIA, the students had to fundraise in order to have everything they needed to compete.

“It’s important to us to build the workforce of the future to be involved in that and STEM is a major part of that progress in not only our industry but other industries in the area,” said Rick Douglas, the Senior Manager for Team Relations at KIA Motors Manufacturing Georgia.

The students also have to present a digital presentation of their building process at the competition.

Rosemont Elementary School and KIA hope that events like these will spark more interest in students in STEM subjects.

“I love science, especially STEM. I’m really big about trying to get my kids to love STEM, especially the girls because they’re not a lot of girls in STEM careers and so that is where my passion was and honestly, I love my kids, I love my job,” said Dina Thomas, fifth grade teacher at Rosemont Elementary, also helped organize the team that will be competing.

The team from Rosemont Elementary School consists of 15 fourth and fifth graders and they have been preparing since January.

“When I grow up I want to be a lot of things but one of them is a cheerleader and I also want to build cars with my dad,” said Poole.

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