Rhoades School holds Innovators Regional competition


The Rhoades School in Encinitas hosted 180 middle school innovators at the Future City Southern California Regional Finals Competition on Jan. 23. Fifty middle school teams, some of which traveled from as far as Hawaii, researched, imagined, and designed solutions to this year’s theme: “Waste Not, Want Not.”

Students were challenged to design waste management systems for cities 100 years in the future. They designed virtual cities, innovated solutions, wrote research papers, used project management techniques, practiced collaboration, and built scale models of their cities using science, technology, engineering, math and art skills.

The winning team came from Wildwood School in Santa Monica. City models at the competition included energy-generating dance floors, underground systems to transport compost, floating gardens, high tech transportation systems, and citizens committed to the 4 R’s.

In addition to the placed winners, 10 teams received special awards including Most Futuristic Model and Best Use of Renewable Energy. Students benefited from an additional learning opportunity from judges who hailed from a number of applicable professions and industries.

For example, the Most Accessible City award was judged by a member of the Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA) and architects, as well as engineers judged projects for the Best Model.

Judges from such prestigious engineering companies as Qualcomm, 3M, and Booz-Allen-Hamiliton generously gave their entire day to judging this event.


1st Place: Futureville - Wildwood School, Santa Monica

2nd Place: Dema Verd - Mirman School, Los Angeles

3rd Place: Ben Green - Magnolia Science Academy, San Diego

Special Awards

Best Model: Ben Green - Magnolia Science Academy, San Diego

The People’s Choice Award: Luminous City - St. Michael’s School, Poway

Most Accessible City: Port Austin - Wildwood School, Santa Monica

Best Use of Renewable Energy: Nirvana - Our Lady of Refuge School, Long Beach

Most Futuristic Model: Tiera Vaso - The Child’s Primary School, San Diego

Best Residential Zone: Vivace - Wildwood School, Santa Monica

Best Transportation: Hope Valley - St. Michael’s School, Poway

Most Sustainable Food Source: Kona - Waiaha School, Hawaii

NCEES Best Use of Land Surveying Practices: Pacifica - Wildwood School, Santa Monica

Rookie of the Year Award: Storm Tech - Lucerne Valley Unified School District, Lucerne Valley