Morton Students Place Second In Computer Programming Competition

A team of Morton East students placed second in the Illinois Institute of Technology Raspberry Pi challenge for their smart backpack design. The competition started in February with a formal application, a YouTube video detailing the project and a project design, all evaluated by judges from IIT. Two teams from Morton East were named among the 30 finalists for the competition.

John Roach, an engineering teacher, and Christine Tabares, who teaches AP Computer Science, each had a team compete against teams with more resources and support from industry leaders in the Raspberry Pi competition. Raspberry Pi is a computer system used by programmers to code and solve problems without needing the normal components and requirements of typical computers.

Tabares’ team of Roberto Gomez, Ricardo K. Lopez and Steven Saldana placed second with the smart backpack design. A showcasing event highlighting the finalists’ designs placed them among the top with the manner they handled questions from industry leaders and IIT professors.

“The Pi Pack is a backpack that has the capability of a laptop with the added benefit of having a never-ending, self-renewable power supply based on solar energy,” Lopez said.

Roach’s team of finalists included Arileny Chavarry, Alondra Corro, Luis Vazquez and Ivan Acosta.