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 munber of community partners.

Engineering students built a three-piece canine agility course for the Middleburg Humane Foundation, which operates a farm shelter, rescue, and rehabiliation 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 intergrate back into society.



Silver Trail Middle School, Broward County FL

Using Engineering to help others

EPICS students at Silver Trail Middle School in Broward County FL are working on several projects that will benefit their school and other students. Projects include:

Helping a special needs students at Silver Trail Middle school who has difficulty holding his head upright.  One group of student engineers have designed a head-rest that straps on to his wheelchair and is modeled after the supports currently being used by NASCAR drivers.

Working with a special needs student who has difficulty walking correctly.  The student frequently tip-toes everywhere he goes, which is not good for his development.  EPICS students are working towards developing a heel that can be attached to the bottom of a shoe and will provide pressure to the bottom of the foot, thus encouraging the user to put his weight down on the heel.  They are being guided in this project by a local podiatrist, who has graciously agreed to assist in their project.   

Working with the custodial staff to develop a method of clearing clogged sprinklers, a common problem on the school campus.  EPICS students are designing a small, spiked tube that can be printed using our 3D printer, and inserted into the clogged sprinkler head in order to remove the obstruction. 

Rancho Solano High School

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.


Sizer School, Fitchburg MA

A group of Sizer School students are working with Habitat for Humanity to find out the cost benefit of using slab housing versus poured concrete housing in New England.  The Students will do modeling and present their findings

Nazareth Academy, LaGrange Park , IL

The Nazareth Academy EPICS program is helping the MidAmerica Service Dog Foundation.

EPICS students are making tennis ball throwers that hook onto wheelchairs so dog owners with limited arm mobility can play catch with their service dogs. EPICS Club is going to design/engineer/build other devices to make the lives of service dog owners easier, like leash to collar connectors that can be fastened using large motor skills as opposed to fine.

Will C. Wood Middle School, CA

Improving Our Environment

Recycling projects at Will C. Wood have earned the school special congressional recognition as a Ocean Guardian School by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association.

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 of Teresa Dinh and Nick DeGallier 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.

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