Last night I attended the Grand Opening and Ribbon Cutting of the Sigma Lab at Charlottesville High School. The Sigma Lab is the result of a joint partnership through the UVA’s Curry School of Education and the School of Engineering, Piedmont Virginia Community College, Charlottesville City Schools, the City of Charlottesville, and other donor organizations like Lenovo and Battelle. It is a part of the project that I’d been working on with my former advisor, Glen Bull, and an extension of the Lab School that opened at Buford Middle School last fall. The Sigma Lab was beautiful, and a product of both backwards AND intelligent design. Architects based their designs on the designs of students from Charlottesville High School who took engineering classes and were a part of “BACON,” CHS’s Best All-Around Club of Nerds.

I didn’t take a whole lot of photos because there were plenty of other people there doing the same thing, but I’ll share mine here.


CBS 19 from the Charlottesville Newsplex was at the opening and they have a small mention of it today on their website.

There were a lot of very important “grown-ups” at the event, as they called themselves. The Mayor of Charlottesville and most of the City Council were in attendance, the Charlottesville Superintendent and School Board, principals from several Charlottesville Schools like Erin Kershner of Venable Elementary and Eric Johnson of Buford Middle School. The head of PVCC was there, as was the Chair of the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department at UVA. ¬†Representatives from the Virginia DOE were also present, but I didn’t catch their names or titles because I was overwhelmed by the space. All of those grown-ups who spoke did a great job of pointing out that it was the students who were responsible for this lab space– it was their space, they designed it, and they were the ones who were going to benefit from it. It was a nice event and I was happy that I got invited to attend it.

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