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Dowell Middle School Advances to National Finals of World’s Largest Rocket Contest

Press Release|
Shane Mauldin|
Wednesday, May 15, 2019
(l-r) Mentor Steve Taylor, Andrew Terkelson, Brenden Frank, Andrew Munsee & Jude Marsh

(l-r) Mentor Steve Taylor, Andrew Terkelson, Brenden Frank, Andrew Munsee & Jude Marsh

McKinney, Texas – DMS1 from Dowell Middle School has qualified to compete in the national finals of the 17th annual Team America Rocketry Challenge (TARC). The team will face 101 of the top rocketry teams from across the country for an opportunity to claim the title of national champion. The TARC Final Fly‐Off will take place May 18 at Great Meadow in The Plains, VA, outside of Washington, D.C.

The team is made up of eighth graders Brenden Frank, Andrew Munsee and Andrew Terkelson and sixth grader Jude Marsh.

“The students worked incredibly hard to meet the requirements for this year’s competition, which are even more challenging than in recent years,” said Vicki Mason, who also teaches Principles of Applied Engineering at Dowell. “These are truly innovative kids who have gained experience with problem‐solving, teamwork and creativity. I’m very proud of what they’ve achieved.”

TARC is the aerospace and defense industry’s flagship program designed to encourage students to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). The competition challenges middle and high school students to design, build and fly a rocket that meets specific altitude and flight duration parameters. This year’s rules require a rocket carrying three raw eggs to reach 856 feet before returning the eggs to Earth, un-cracked, within 43 to 46 seconds and under strict weight and height requirements.

This is the second year that Dowell Middle School has entered the Team America Rocketry Challenge. Both last year’s team and this year’s team completed the qualifying flights. However, this is the first time the team is invited to the Fly‐Off Finals.

DMS1 will compete for more than $100,000 in prizes and scholarships, and the opportunity to represent the United States at the International Rocketry Challenge taking place at the Paris Air Show, in Paris, France in July. At the international fly‐off, teams from the United Kingdom, France and Japan will face the U.S. champions for the international title. The top 20 teams will be invited to next year’s NASA Student Launch Competition.

Sponsored by the Aerospace Industries Association, the National Association of Rocketry and more than 20 industry partners, TARC is the world’s largest rocket contest. Now in its 17th year, TARC has inspired more than 70,000 middle and high school students to explore education and careers in STEM fields. This year, 830 teams representing 46 states, the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands designed and built model rockets in hopes of qualifying for the National Finals.

For more information about TARC 2019, visit

Source: Team America Rocketry Challenge

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