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Despite fewer funds, MESA club continues to produce high achievers

Posted: Monday, Feb 11th, 2013

Watsonville High School students Marisela Rocha, Raudel Covarrubias, Oreli Jara and Marisela Rocha construct paper towers during a recent lunchtime meeting of MESA in preparation for MESA Day Prelims being held next month in Fresno. (Photo by Roseann Hernandez/Register-Pajaronian).

WATSONVILLE — During a recent lunch period in a Watsonville High School classroom, desks are littered with the crumpled wrappings of half-eaten sandwiches, copious amounts of scotch tape and blank sheets of paper as groups of students attempt to build ceiling-high paper towers.

The students are members of MESA (Mathematics Engineering Science Achievement), and in lieu of a guest speaker, they have decided to spend their weekly lunch meeting working in teams on an exercise in preparation for MESA Day Prelims next month — a precursor to the annual MESA Day competition to be held at Fresno State in April.

Raudel Covarrubias, who is also a member of the school’s chemistry club, said he enjoys these hands-on, problem-solving activities as it involves one of his two major interests: chemistry and engineering.

Covarrubias plans on becoming a chemical engineer.

Since its founding at Watsonville High School in 1988, MESA has churned out an impressive list of graduates that have gone on to attend some of the nation’s top universities, including Harvard, MIT, Stanford, UC Berkeley and Georgetown University, with almost half of those choosing to continue their studies in a math, science or technology related field.

For the complete article see the 02-12-2013 issue.

Click here to purchase an electronic version of the 02-12-2013 paper.

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