This year, yet again, a team of 12 students from Year 10 and above entered into this year's UKSDC national finals after winning our regional competition before Christmas. It would be hard to notice that some were competing at the finals for the first time amidst the flurry of hard work throughout the weekend.
Over 20 school converged on the university being split into three teams and given a briefing to introduce the concepts of this year's Request for proposal (RFP). A space station orbiting the sun set in the year 2095, with a capacity to hold 2500 inhabitants and to maintain facilities for research, energy transmission and, in some cases… A sports arena?!
Bedes was part of Olympus Mons Trading Company, made up of 7 schools, Bedes and 6 others scattered around the UK, but nonetheless, when work began at 9:30am on Saturday the hard work began and there wasn't a single quiet moment for the rest of the weekend. Before long, lunch was a small break in the busy day, but even then many of us decided to get food and rush back to work, showing everyone's commitment to the task. Red room presentations early in the evening revealed aspects the teams needed to address held at 5:30pm, work continued with only another short dinner break until 10pm where people rushed from the university back to the hostel.
At the hostel still nothing calmed down with communication getting harder. We moved to 12am still no one slowing down, it wasn’t until the early hours of 5:30am when people slowly filtered back to rooms, just to get woken up at 7am to put finishing touches on our presentation before rushing again back to the university for hand in at 8am.
After rushing to the university the teams gathered in the lecture hall to present their proposals to the judges. 30 minutes followed by 15 minutes of intense questions and scrutiny. Afterwards, the judges left for deliberations and when they returned and gave feedback about all the teams' presentations, praising Olympus Mons for its thoroughness and, attention to detail showing deep research and understanding of our presentation. And the winner was... Olympus Mons!
We can look forward to hoping some of our team get selected to the UK or Europe national teams to compete in the international space design competition in summer.