New Hampton, Iowa – Robots, roller coasters, and fashionistas were on display Wednesday evening at New Hampton High School’s annual J-Term showcase.
Senior Nick Tekippe worked with several classmates and they took mechanical engineering to the next level.
J-term is two-week course allowing students to pick and develop a topic they’re passionate about. Students are paired with teachers and are encouraged to leave the building, create resources and network.
For Tekippe and classmate Max Schwickerath , they designed and built robots.
Schwickerath tells North Iowa News the course allowed him to pursue his passion for mechanical engineering.
He says the project required several days of planning.
Other students like junior Emma Reicherts traveled Iowa for a project called ‘Cruisin Futures.’
There were over 40 different projects on display, including a world food exhibit, metal fabrication, crime scene investigation, roller coasters and women’s self defense.
And for some students like senior Dalton Timp, J-Term is an avenue to decided between to career paths: education or parole officer.
Principal Sarah Updegraff says sometimes the best education is having students do it themselves.
She says rural Iowa can’t offer a wide array of courses because of limited resources.