One never knows when a required educational event will spark an ah-ha moment and turn into a CHOSEN passion. Senior Alex Kulicki can attest to this being a real natural phenomenon as it happened to him a few years ago.
At The Hotchkiss School around Earth day time, the school hosts Eco Day where faculty and students take part in hands-on learning, Earth day projects. Alex was in faculty member Bill Fenton’s group and their task was to build a solar panel phone charger at the school’s lakefront. Alex hadn’t ever thought to explore solar power, and he hadn’t met Mr. Fenton before, but from that day forward, he would be working with Mr. Fenton to see how solar power could eventually further ‘power up’ his entrepreneurial ideas.
Mr. Fenton saw Alex’s interest and engagement that day at the lake and got to know him better. When he later learned of Alex’s motor sports and car hobbies, the teacher in him saw a natural connection. Alex was shown an old solar powered car designed by Blue Sky Design that needed updating. After some research and exploring, Mr. Fenton and Alex learned it would be more efficient and economically viable to get a new solar car kit than to retrograde the old one. With help from Mr. Fenton and David Runge, the Hotchkiss alum who built the first solar car, Alex embarked on building the new and updated version…
This year Alex is steps away from completing the solar powered car! People who come to the fair may get a chance to sit in the chassis and test out the gas (on stilts of course!) just to see how powerful and fast a solar car can be. If we’re really lucky, (and our fingers are crossed because he’s soooooo close!) Alex will drive the car around for people to really see how it moves!
Come out to see the solar powered car and so much more at this year’s Maker Faire! Get your (FREE! or donate to the cause!) tickets before the day of and be entered to win a Space Yoga gc, a Woodland gc, a Boathouse gc, and other small door prizes!