Two of the three senior teams placed first and second in the county at the recent Future Problem Solvers district competition. Junior Joanna LaTorre and freshman Iksha Handa placed first in their individual categories.
“I know how much the kids enjoyed it,” said first-year sponsor Jeanie Griffin said. “I knew it was a pretty important club.”
Although Griffin was the club’s coach, she says the credit for FPS’s success belongs elsewhere and that some of the seniors in the club spent their time during meetings helping out the younger members.
“I’m really proud of how they did,” Griffin said. “Credit goes to the seniors for helping and parents [Hanna] Krause and [Rachna] Handa for their help and guidance.”
LaTorre placed first in the Individual Booklet competition, where students are given a scenario and spend two hours responding to and solving problems with the scenario.
“I was pretty confident I would win,” LaTorre said. “I’ve been an FPS member since fifth grade. Last year I won first place at state with a multi-school team booklet. Everything I wrote down flowed naturally. All of my experience and work paid off.”
LaTorre said her seven years competing in FPS mean more to her than winning awards.
“Every year after competition I am inspired to do great things to help the future,” LaTorre said. “I think it plants a seed in every competitor’s mind that he or she can accomplish amazing and innovative things, no matter how challenging the scenario may be.”
By Neill Johnston