EPICS High School Project Examples

Elizabeth Seton High School | Eastern Tech High School | Hereford High School |
Metro Tech High School | Academy of Our Lady of Peace | Sammamish High School |
Rancho Solarno High School | Agawam High School | Foxcroft School

Elizabeth Seton High School – Bladensburg, MD


Go Baby Go Electric Cars

Go Baby Go is a program developed to adapt children’s ride-on electric toy cars for young children with mobility challenges. The inability of children to move around their own environment contributes to delay in cognitive skills as well. Through this program, one group of Seton students adapted 4 of these cars. They had to rewire the cars so that the power is controllable by a large button on the steering wheel; they added seat belts and additional external structures to support the child. These cars will be given to families working with the Prince George’s County Infants and Toddlers Program.

Special Needs Kicking Machines

Children with physical disabilities are often not able to participate in inclusive physical education classes. They require adapted equipment that will allow them to perform similar skills as other students. One group of Seton students built 4 kicking machines that can be used by children in wheelchairs who have minimal muscle control or use of their hands and feet. The machines work by a lever being pushed down which releases a “leg” with a shoe which then kicks a ball. These machines will be given to Prince George’s County Public School Special Olympics programs.

Eastern Tech High School – Baltimore, MD

Plastic Pollution in Our Community

This apparatus was built to test the durability of various storm drains. “Plastic is taken by rain and wind and moved into our ocean by storm drains. We think money should be invested to stop the problem because aquatic animals are dying in the ocean from plastic consumption. If they don’t die after eating the plastic, then we could fish them, eat them, therefore consuming the plastic ourselves.”

Hereford High School – Baltimore, MD

Assistive Cane

The elderly, like my grandfather, who still want to be active around the house can sometimes lack the ability to effectively complete daily household tasks such as working outside or working in a shed or garage. As a result, I’m making a multipurpose cane that can assist them in their tasks which will give them the ability to grasp small dropped objects or parts. It must have a grabber, a magnet, it must stand on its own, not be affected by liquids, must have an easily pushed lever to control the claw, and must be durable.

Metro Tech High School – Phoenix, AZ

The Story Teller's Throne/Chess Tables

Our community partner, Marsha Phillips, is the librarian at Homeward Bound and she has decided to work with us on what we could make to encourage the families there, our stakeholders, to come outside and get some fresh air and learn to create healthy relationships with their neighbors while also having fun on the chess cement tables.

Academy of Our Lady of Peace – San Diago, CA

The students in the EPICS program at The Academy of Our Lady of Peace worked to create projects to improve the lives of their community. Listen to the students explain the impact of their projects.

Sammamish High School – Bellvue WA

Teaching students about Nano Technology

EPICS students from Sammamish High School in Bellvue Washington held a NanoFair on June 8, 2015 to teach middle school students about nanotechnology. Over 250 students from Tyee Middle School participated. The event was such a success that the EPICS program has been asked to host the event during the 2015-16 academic year.  

The EPICS team r worked with the Bellevue School District Special Education Department and modify or adapt motorized ride-on cars for handicapped preschool students.

The project started with one car that was modified to be controlled with a push button on the steering wheel instead of using the gas pedal to operate the car. The car was also equipped with a restraint system to help support the preschool students while driving and to keep the students secure and safe. As part of this project, the pair wrote a winning grant proposal that provided an additional $1200 in funding to modify four additional cars for the Special Education department. The additional cars will have a variety of modifications based on the needs identified by the stakeholders including head controls and knee controls. It is expected that all five cars will be completed at the end of the year.

Rancho Solano High School

students sifting through dirt with their hands

Worm Farm

The IB Chemistry, Biology, and Physics classes at RS spent the day with the EPICS class to build a worm farm and study the benefits of using the worm castings (manure) for agriculture. They worked with Matt Martinez ‘14 and the Bridge Program, both from Princeton University, to help design and implement this technology in a remote village in Peru. A large worm growing area was developed and several garden plots were planted to measure the effects of worm castings on plant growth and pest resistance.

Agawam High School – MA

Nanotechnology Through Marine Aquaculture

At Agawam High School, EPICS students are studying nanotechnology through marine aquaculture. Students are cultivating photosynthetic algae to examine and experiment with hundreds of species of diatoms. Modern applications for diatoms include controlled carbon fixation, information storage and transmission, biosensors and optical technology. Diatoms lend themselves to nanotechnology because the cells become smaller with each generation. In May, teams of EPICS students will travel to our Junior High to share their results and present an original Power Point on nanotechnology careers in marine biology. Another future nanotechnology project will involve the study of nanoparticles in the sea which may influence climate change.


Foxcroft School – Middleburg VA

Using STEM to prepare young women for the 21st century

Foxcroft School uses EPICS as a way to make STEM compelling and to reach students who do not see themselves as being math/science oriented. Teams have created and delivered projects for a number of community partners.

Engineering students built a three-piece canine agility course for the Middleburg Humane Foundation, which operates a farm shelter, rescue, and rehabilitation facility for abused and neglected animals in Marshall, VA.

A second team built two wheelchair accessible picnic tables for the Boulder Crest Retreat for Wounded Warriors. The tables provide an accessible space where soldiers can visit with family and friends and are designed to allow limited mobility veterans to sit surrounded by their guests. Boulder Crest Retreat provides housing for wounded soldiers for up to two weeks as they integrate back into society.