Students aspiring to become scientists, engineers or mathematicians have the opportunity gain experience in those fields outside the classroom by joining the Technology Student Association (TSA).

The TSA is a non-profit organization that strives to augment the intellectual development of middle and high school students across the country.

"It teaches kids a lot about professionalism and how to conduct themselves in a professional manner," said Woodward Public Schools TSA advisor David Mudd. "It helps for problem-solving, thinking through a problem and being rational adults."

Approximately 20 Woodward middle and high school students compete in a multitude of individual and team events. Nationwide, there are over 200,000 students involved in the program.

Recently, the Woodward Technology Students Association competed at the North Central TSA Mini Conference in Red Rock, where a number of students had stellar performances in individual and team events.

"They did really well," Mudd said. "Travis Howell was a standout with the high school group and Tyler Zwink was a standout with the middle school group."

Howell finished first place in both the photography tech and promotional graphics categories, while Zwink finished first in career prep and prepared speech. Zwink was also runner-up in the electrical applications category.

In addition to Howell, other high school students that stood out were Erick Martinez, Shane Standerfer, Alec Camacho, Eddie Venegas and Yvette Rosales.

On the middle school side, Sawyer Zimmerman, Garrett Scott and Sam Little made an impact in individual and team events.

Some team events Woodward students focus on include challenging tech issues and tech bowl competitions.

"Challenging tech issues is a team event where they deliver an extemporaneous presentation explaining opposing views of a current technological event," Mudd explained. "Tech bowl is a quiz bowl type event where the team goes in and answers questions head-to-head with another team about technological issues."

In the next two months, Woodward TSA students will be gearing up for three more conferences.

"We have the Elk City Mini Conference on Feb. 15 and then we have the U.S. Grant Mini Conference in Oklahoma City on Feb. 28," Mudd said about upcoming competitions. "Then on March 10 there is the West Regional Mini Conference at SWOSU (Southwestern Oklahoma State University)."

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