June 13, 2018
Eighth graders named finalists in programming challenge
Fort Couch Middle School eighth graders Alex VanHoorelbeke, Jackson VanHoorelbeke and Akash Vajjala were recently named finalists in the Alice Challenge, a computer programming competition for students in grades 5-12.
According to its website, “The Alice Challenge invites middle and high school students in the Pittsburgh region to create 3D animations, engaging games, or immersive experiences using the Alice programming environment. Alice helps students develop technical skills and encourages them to explore their creativity, all while making something meaningful.”
More than 70 students participated in the inaugural Alice Challenge, which was open to all students in grades 5-12 in the Pittsburgh region including Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Greene, Washington and Westmoreland counties. Students could participate as individuals or in a team of up to four students.
The challenge was comprised of three competition categories including Animation, Game and Good Neighbor. Students competed within two divisions; a Middle Division for students in grades 5, 6, 7 and 8, and an Upper Division for students in grades 9, 10, 11 and 12.
Submissions were judged by professional game designers and industry experts on creativity, visual presentation and technical implementation. Good Neighbor entries are also rated on impact potential.
A finalists showcase and award ceremony to honor winners with prizes were held on June 5, 2018. The Alice Challenge is part of the 10th anniversary celebration of Randy Pausch’s Last Lecture.