Do you BioMoto?

That slogan appeared on the shirt of many of the more than 250 eighth graders gathered at Rockingham Dragway March 2. The students braved cold temperatures and occasional snow flurries to participate in the second year of the BioMoto Capstone Competition, which included a pit crew challenge and a student-designed invention event. Despite the less than ideal weather, the excitement was evident as the kids cheered each other on during the tire-changing competition.

The BioMoto STEM Challenge was formed as part of a three-year grant from the Golden LEAF Foundation grant to give middle schoolers a chance to see science through a motorsports’ perspective.

The North Carolina Biotechnology Center, in conjunction with dozens of industry partners including the North Carolina Motorsports Association, created the BioMoto STEM Challenge capitalizes on the allure of motorsports to entice students to learn about STEM disciplines while focusing on fun, challenging and innovative activities focused on health, nutrition and human performance

Thirty-one teams from Cabarrus County, Kannapolis, Richmond County and Rowan-Salisbury participated in the pit crew challenge which included a simulated, timed pit stop with a real stock car. The event wass the culmination of the two-semester educational initiative which included fitness testing at the Appalachian State University Human Performance Lab at the North Carolina Research Campus where students learned about fitness and nutrition as it pertains to an athlete’s performance.

More than 1,500 students from at least 12 North Carolina school districts are expected to have participated in BioMoto STEM Challenge by its completion. Learn more about the BioMoto Stem Challenge here.

Haven Kerchner