PCSers Isabel Swyers and Aurora Berry were there:
Students ‘GLOW With Their Hands,’ 700 Students from 30 Districts, Privates, Home-Schools, BOCES
About 700 students in grades seven through 12, from 30 school districts and private schools, home-school networks and area BOCES districts took that opportunity Tuesday at the Genesee County Fairgrounds. There, they talked to people who work in the agriculture, skilled trades and manufacturing, and got to see some demonstrations. There were more than 40 vendors there.
Colby Amadeo, a senior at Livonia High School, said he won a Lego-building contest.
“We had to build a construction cone out of Legos. I built it in 7 minutes, 33 seconds,” he said. “It was a little challenging. The Legos kept moving on me every time I tried building layers.”
Another Livonia student, freshman Ava Pragle, said she was at an activity at which the people running it put tomatoes in a structure.
“They grow them all year round,” she said. Pragle also said, “There was a medic place where you can put something around your arm and it stops the bleeding.”
Both of them were there for the first time, Amadeo and Pragle said.
Zach Anderson, project engineer for CPL: Architecture — Engineering — Planning, based in Rochester, said his company was showcasing the Batavia Town Fire Hall, Station No. 2, a building project in which it was involved.
“What we have for the kids is everything from the life of a project from the very beginning — the survey and mapping all the way up through the end, to our final design and finished product,” he said. Anderson said the company had its traditional survey equipment at its table.
“We can walk them through and show them what that equipment would put on paper, what we use for design,” he said. “What the kids are interacting with is a virtual reality system that the architects use in their design process to put themselves into the spaces they’re designing, so they can understand how things are fitting and functioning and working together. They’re seeing a model of the design that was also used by our architects in the design process. What’s on the computer is a real-life model of what the inside of the finished product looks like.”
Mary Ellyn Merle, project manager for Genesee Construction, was showing groups of students how the company was working on a ramp for one of the buildings at the county Fairgrounds.
“We actually tore out an existing ramp that they had and we built an ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act)- compliant ramp,” Merle said. “The ramp that they had wasn’t at the correct slope. We rebuilt that for them.” Merle said Genesee Construction workers came on Friday and tore out the existing ramp. On Tuesday, the crew was pouring the concrete for the new ramp.
“Kids are going to be using floats and trowels to get the correct finish and also learning about control joints,” she said. “We pick a couple of volunteers and they get to start doing that. They’re helping to create the finish on top of the concrete by using a trowel. Then, we’ll be adding control joints ... so the concrete doesn’t crack.”
When talking to the kids, Merle said she wanted to focus on the fact that there are multiple careers in construction besides the ones in the field. There are marketing, accounting, science and geology, for example, she said.
“Construction is a broad field — not just using a hammer or a piece of equipment,” she said. Jacob Fleming, 16, a sophomore at Lyndonville High School, was at 'GLOW With Your Hands' for the first time.
“I’m on this field trip checking out some new careers around here and kind of like the concrete one or the construction ... because it gives you some good, hands-on — learning to work with your hands, instead of just sitting in an office,” he said.
One vendor had equipment for spraying crops and Fleming said the students were allowed to climb to the top of the sprayer. “It’s a pretty fun trip to figure out your career ...” the sophomore said. He said he was at GLOW With Your Hands for the first time.
Perry juniors Isabel Swyers and Aurora Berry were checking out the displays with their classmates. Swyers said she’s seen LandPro Equipment LLC and a fruit-and-vegetable stand. She said they had been at a rock salt company’s display talking to staff about how far underground the miners go — about 12,000 feet — and everything that they do there. Berry said she liked the EMT and ambulance vending display. “I liked the EMT one. You got to experience some of the things they do, like CPR,” she said. “I’m interested in the medical field right now. I’m going to GCC (Genesee Community College).” Batavia City School District Coordinator of Community Schools Julia Rogers said there were a lot of interactive activities for the students and a lot of careers for them to explore.
“We brought eighth- through 12th-graders with us today. It’s been a wonderful experience for everybody,” she said. “They absolutely love it. What’s cool is they are also getting the hands-on experience. Everybody’s participating.”