Home > The Track > Events > 2016 TSA Nationals

2016 TSA Nationals

Nashville might be known for country music, but this June it got a good dose of technology from some of the nation’s savvy youth.

In June, the Tennessee town saw 7,500 attendees for the Technology Student Association’s 2016 National Conference. But sightseeing was secondary to the serious work put in by the students entered in one or more of the 70+ competitions.


Among these participants were the creators of serious machines, CO2-powered model dragsters. Every year, the high school and middle school competitors create seriously fast machines that fly down the track, often in less than a second.

The top three placers for this year’s Dragster Design competition for the high school level are:

  1. Merritt Kendzior with Resistance (0.811 sec), Southeast High School, Florida (shown below)
  2. Elezar Tonev with Yang (0.813 sec), Braden River High School, Florida
  3. Jefferson Pham with Blazin Bullet (0.819 sec), Bowie High School, Texas

Middle school top placers are:

  1. Megan Kelly with GA Bullet (0.962 sec), Monroe County Middle School, Georgia
  2. Hunter Raley with Striker (0.956 sec), Haile Middle School, Florida
  3. Bryce Barrett with Mr. Magnificent (1.016 sec), Kerr Middle School, Texas


This competition features students who create scale models of a mode of transportation that changes each year. This year, Transportation Modeling entries highlighted carefully crafted riding mowers, many complete with house and lawn settings. The top placers are:

  1. Jared Herbert with Solar Lawn Systems, Lakewood Ranch High School, Florida
  2. Alyssa Paulhamus with John Deere 400, Jersey Shore Area High School, Pennsylvania
  3. Peter Tran with Petertron, Bowie High School, Texas


Another competition that Pitsco assists with involves speed from the Sun instead of a CO2 cartridge. Junior Solar Sprint is a middle school-only competition in which teams use STEM concepts, teamwork, and other skills to design, construct, and race a solar-powered model car.

The top-placing teams are:

  1. Norwayne Middle School, North Carolina
  2. Southern Middle School, Kentucky
  3. Southwest Middle School, Florida

For a full list of the finalists for all competitions, visit the TSA website.