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News Release
Clear Creek Middle School student team
Clear Creek Middle School student team
Clear Creek Middle School Named Oregon State Winner in National STEM Competition from Samsung (Photo) - 01/13/20

School wins $15,000 in technology and classroom supplies; advances to the next stage in the Samsung Solve for Tomorrow Contest

Selected from thousands of entries nationwide, Clear Creek Middle School in Gresham, Oregon has been named an Oregon State Winner in the Samsung Solve for Tomorrow Contest for its proposed plan to address emergency vehicle safety and response time. This is the third time in four years CCMS teacher Tom Erickson and his class have been a state winner. As a result, Samsung has contributed a total of $85,000 in instructional technology to Clear Creek Middle School.

The Samsung Solve for Tomorrow Contest encourages teachers and students to solve real-world issues in their community using classroom skills in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).

Clear Creek Middle School is among the nation’s 100 State Winners (at least one school from all 50 states) and will receive $15,000* in technology for its achievement. In addition, the school will also receive a Samsung video kit for students to create and submit a three-minute video that showcases their project development and how it addresses the issue. The video will be used for the chance to advance to the next phase of the contest and win additional prizes and educational opportunities.

“Samsung is extremely proud of the evolution of the Solve for Tomorrow platform over the past 10 years: fueling students’ passion and curiosity to tackle issues that affect their communities in unexpected and creative ways,” said Ann Woo, Senior Director of Corporate Citizenship at Samsung Electronics America. “Reading the innovative proposals students and teachers have put forth this year exemplifies what we know to be true for every student – that young minds have just as much to teach as they do to learn. Our guiding citizenship vision is ‘Enabling People,’ and we are thrilled to celebrate another year of empowering future innovators to achieve their full potential through STEM learning.”

About the school’s project

Local Issue: Seventh and eighth rade students in Mr. Tom Erickson’s class at Clear Creek Middle School are attempting to make it more safe for emergency vehicles to navigate intersections. At the same time, they are hoping to decrease the response time of these vehicles to their calls.

Proposed Project: Clear Creek Middle School students are proposing a system in which passenger vehicles will be notified as an emergency vehicle approaches an intersection. This will be accomplished by tapping into the Opticom system that police and fire departments use to control traffic signals. When the system is activated, the vehicles will be notified to stop short of the intersection to reduce obstacles.

Future contest phases: All 100 State Winners will work on their projects and submit their three-minute video in hopes of advancing in the contest’s remaining phases:

  • 20 National Finalist schools will be selected to travel to the final event in the spring where they will present their project to a panel of judges. For achieving National Finalist status, schools will be awarded in total $50,000 in technology and classroom materials.
  • Five grand prize National Winner schools will receive in total $100,000 in technology and classroom materials, and participate in a trip to Washington, D.C. to present their projects to members of Congress.
  • Public voting will also determine one Community Choice winner from the pool of National Finalists, who will be eligible to win an additional $10,000 in Samsung technology.

*Prize is based on an estimated retail value.

Interview Opportunities: Mr. Erickson and his students are available for interviews about the local issue they’re working to address and the importance of hands-on STEM learning.

Media Contact: For questions about the Samsung Solve for Tomorrow Contest, please reach out to SamsungSFT@allisonpr.com. For questions about the school’s project, please reach out to Gresham-Barlow School District Communications Director Athena Vadnais at: vadnais@gresham.k12.or.us