Kettering University will be the new home to Square One Education Network’s annual Innovative Vehicle Design Challenge starting in 2019.
The statewide competition, which draws 50 to 60 high school teams, is May 11 at Kettering University’s GM Mobility Research Center, utilizing the test pad and track. Three competitions will take place that day: Autonomous Innovative Vehicle Design Challenge, Mini Innovative Vehicle Design Challenge, and Full Scale Innovative Vehicle Design Challenge.
“Square One’s Network helps students connect their learning with opportunity and helps employers connect with their future talent,” said Dan DuBois, CEO of Square One Education Network. “This agreement with Kettering University to host our annual Innovative Vehicle Design Challenge Competition at its premier and newly constructed testing facility is a significant component in achieving our goals to help students with opportunity and to help industry find its future talent. At Square One, we don’t just do STEM, we help Mobilize it.”
Square One is a Michigan-based non-profit educational organization focused on developing talent for the future workforce by empowering teachers and students with hands on learning experiences around high-quality STEM projects by partnering with higher education and industry.
“A partnership between Square One and Kettering University makes perfect sense, as we both value the importance of a STEM education and preparing the leaders of the future,” said Dr. Robert McMahan, Kettering University President. “We are excited to support the Innovative Vehicle Design Challenge on Kettering’s campus and through it inspire today’s students to become a future generation of engineers and innovators.”
The event, which is the only competition of its kind in the state, is expected to bring nearly 1,000 students, teachers, and spectators to Kettering University and Flint for the day. The competition comes to Kettering University also thanks to a partnership with Brose, who committed to a gift of $125,000 over the next five years, of which $25,000 will go to support pre-college programming and mobility research at the University.
The Autonomous Innovative Vehicle Design Challenge project challenges students to re-engineer a “Power Wheels Jeep” into an autonomous vehicle. The Mini Innovative Vehicle Design Racing Challenge requires teams of high school students to re-engineer an electric 1/10th scale RC vehicle, featuring an innovative component that sets it apart from the rest. The Full Scale Innovative Vehicle Design Challenge inspires teams of high school students to transform a gas-powered go-kart kit or build a car from the ground up into an electric or hybrid electric vehicle, featuring an innovative component that sets it apart from the rest.
“Square One’s Mobility projects in Electrification, Autonomous, Connected, and Cyber Security technologies will substantially benefit by this partnership with Kettering University and we are very enthusiastic about the benefit for current and future student participants,” DuBois said. “It is those participants who will have a broader horizon for career pathways which in turn helps provide future talent for industries that are desperately looking for qualified people.”