GERING — Gering High School will be highlighted by Samsung as part of the school’s success in the Samsung Solve for Tomorrow contest following the Samsung team’s visit to GHS Monday.
The Bulldogs have won the most in the contest’s 10 years as a three-time, consecutive state winner and a national winner in 2017. During that time, over 20,000 entries from across the country have come in for the contest.
In celebration of the 10th year, Samsung Executive Vice President David Steel announced Samsung’s Solve for Tomorrow contest will increase the prizes from $2 million to $3 million.
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To showcase the momentum Solve for Tomorrow has afforded the school within the STEM pathway, Samsung personnel met with district administrators, teachers and students during their tour of the newly renovated high school.
Throughout the tour, Steel and Nebraska 3rd District Congressman Adrian Smith saw how classrooms have incorporated the technology.
Steel said his favorite part of the tour was visiting Broc Brown’s classroom.
“I liked when we went into Mr. Brown’s classroom,” Steel said. “We got to see the students working with technology.”
Steel added, “It’s nice to see the breadth of course offerings within STEM. I think it’s important to find passion points whether that be software, programming or something that connects kids with technology and their future.”
Engineering teacher Justin Reinmuth shared his excitement to showcase the revamped STEM program.
“To receive that kind of money, it has revamped the entire building. The kids come in and we always start building stuff and breaking stuff. We bring them in and just to have those ‘ah-ha’ moments or moments of frustration, those are the real learning moments.”
Smith, a Gering alumnus, was excited to see the growth of STEM at GHS.
“When I came back here, I saw that with Mr. Reinmuth’s efforts through this program, Solve for Tomorrow really helped develop more STEM and engineering courses,” he said. “There have been so many positive developments happening and it just inspires students for the future.”
Following the school tour, Samsung was welcomed with an assembly where students and school board members recognized the impact Solve for Tomorrow has had on the growth within STEM education in the district. Students also gave Steel gifts of 3D printed Bulldogs as a keepsake.
At the end of the assembly, Steel announced Samsung will donate $10,000 to GHS, so the district and staff can continue to grow the program.
“It was unexpected for sure,” said BJ Peters, GPS school board president. “But it will help us continue the momentum that has already been created.”
Students also appreciated Samsung’s generosity.
“It was really generous of them,” said senior Emily Harrison.
Students also got to see the new Samsung smartphone with a folding screen, the Galaxy Fold.
“It was really cool,” junior Aspen Shields said.
Aspen Reinmuth added, “I feel like that’s going to come out and be popular.”
Steel hopes the Solve for Tomorrow project serves as a catalyst for innovation and teacher support in the district. He also hopes it provides students with the skills to embrace technology challenges in their careers.
Samsung will be in the area for three days capturing video and photos within the classrooms as they compile footage for the video package.