News Archive

Local Student Wins CLC Tenth Anniversary Patch

St. Mary High School sophomore Delaney Bell created the artwork that inspired the Challenger Learning Center at Paducahs official tenth anniversary patch. Kentucky astronaut Colonel Terry Wlicutt recognized Bell as the winner of the 2012 patch contest during a special presentation at the high school on October 19.

Bells artwork has been made into a patch and will be on display at the center. Bell said she is proud that her artwork helped bring Wilcutt to St.Mary. Its so cool for Colonel Wilcutt to be here for any reason, said Bell. But to know that he came here because my drawing was chosen as the anniversary patch makes it that much better.

Wilcutt, four-time space shuttle veteran, shared his experiences in space with the Bell and over 400 kindergarten through twelfth graders, teachers and parents. Wilcutt also discussed the importance of education and encouraged the students to stay in school. He explained that to have a career in the space field, math, science and engineering are a must.

You need to study hard and earn an advanced technical degree because thats what your competition is doing, Wilcutt told the students. You must believe in yourself, make yourself qualified, and then have the confidence to send in your application to the astronaut office.

St. Mary art teacher Sue Hein encouraged her students to enter the contest and gave Bell the good news she had won. When Mrs. Hein came to class and told me artwork had been selected, I was so surprised and excited. This is a real honor, Bell said.

More than 100 students entered this years patch contest, which celebrated the centers tenth anniversary and providing STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) programming for over 75,000 people of all ages since its doors opened on August 16, 2002.

The Challenger Center staff judged the contest. Choosing the winner was not easy, said Center Director Mellisa Duncan. Delaney created a beautiful patch that represents our center well and having Colonel Wilcutt share his stories of space exploration with the St. Mary students is wonderful way to conclude our tenth anniversary celebration.

Dr. Angela Farmer, director of St. Mary School System, agreed. Its a tremendous value to our students to see the actual implementation of science and math in a way they dont get to experience everyday, Farmer said. They learned education truly opens doors to the world around them.

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