Beaufort Middle School Students Win Statewide STEM Competition

The Beaufort Middle School Regular Guys Team, from left: Cameron Kearney, Carlisle Salapare, Mrs. Veronica Hunter,  Mrs. Chandra Payne, Cameron Cook, Mr. John Gilbert and Evan Fent.

The Beaufort Middle School Regular Guys Team, from left: Cameron Kearney, Carlisle Salapare, Mrs. Veronica Hunter, Mrs. Chandra Payne, Cameron Cook, Mr. John Gilbert and Evan Fent.

BEAUFORT, SC – The team of Regular Guys — Cameron Cook, Evan Fent, Cameron Kearney and Carlisle Salapare — won first place for the state of South Carolina and each student will receive $1,000 U.S. Saving bonds valued at maturity for the project. Beaufort Middle School after school eCybermission teams were sponsored by Mrs. Chandra Payne and Mrs. Jill Wilborn, sixth grade science teachers.

This is the first year the after school science club was offered. eCybermission is a web-based STEM competition for students in sixth through ninth grade that promotes self-discovery and helps students recognize real life applications of STEM. Teams from all over the country propose solutions to real problems in their communities and compete for state, regional and national awards.

From November through March, the Beaufort Middle team experimented on how local police could benefit from having something like the “Smartwater, CSI” that police use in Florida. But, the developed an invisible ink. This is not only more cost-efficient and requires less capital, it is just as effective at capturing vital evidence.

According to the students, they chose this project because there were many break-ins in the community and they wanted to solve this problem. “In our neighborhoods, people were stealing bikes, balls, and scooters. People were breaking into houses and cars. We wanted to stop this,” the teens said.

So they researched Smartwater, CSI, technology and thought how they could use it on doors. This is where they got their idea. The students used invisible ink for the project, since Smartwater needed a high ultraviolet instrumentation to read the results. Then they presented the information to Beaufort City Police Officers Andy Brub, Sean Alford and Stephanie Karafa.

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