Congratulations Mozart Secondary SeaPerch Knights!

On Saturday, May 13, Vanguard Academy Mozart Secondary SeaPerch Knights made a splash in the 2023 International SeaPerch Challenge held at the University of Maryland in College Park, Maryland.  Out of 70 teams, the team placed 12th in Team Video, 17th in Technical Design Report, 24th in Obstacle Course, and 45th in Mission Course.

“This trip has been filled with so many engineering lessons for our students,” Mozart Secondary SeaPerch Sponsor, Roy Villanueva, said. “For them to be able to connect what is in a textbook to a real-life scenario is amazing.”

Seventy-seven teams of middle and high school students from around the world participated in the SeaPerch challenge.  SeaPerch is an underwater robotics program, requiring students to build an underwater Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV).

“This competition challenge introduced me to a new field of STEM that I never thought I would be interested in,” SeaPerch Knights team Captain Aaron Ibañez said. “Everyone always shoots for the sky, and no one ever thinks to look below.”

The SeaPerch program is supported by the Office of Naval Reserarch and provides students with the opportunity to learn about robotics and engineering, science, and mathematics (STEM) while building an underwater ROV.  

Mozart Secondary junior and ROV driver Aidan Cerda agrees that this was a tremendous learning experience.

“We were not only exposed to STEM fields, but more importantly, to real world life lessons,” Aidan said.  “I met people from Florida, from Puerto Rico, from China—the diversity you find in SeaPerch is incredible and gives you the opportunity to learn new cultures.”

Mr. Villanueva also agrees with Aidan.

"This has been an amazing opportunity for our students to experience different cultures, different environments and be successful in a rigorous competition,” he said.  “This is an experience our students might not have had the opportunity if it were not for SeaPerch.  From sightseeing national museums to attending a baseball game to networking with engineers and competing at a rigorous level—this has definitely been a wonderful experience for our students.”