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School Scene

Fall 2013

Septemberl 2013 - Vol 7, Issue 3
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In This Issue
Tackling Problems as a Team, by Sanjay Koduvalli, National TSA President
TSA Pride, by Sri Nimmagadda, National TSA Vice President
Rock the Royal Blue TSA Shirt, by EB Bollendonk, National TSA Secretary
Community Service, by Sai Nimmagadda, National TSA Treasurer
New Middle School Competitive Events, by Hughston May, National TSA Reporter
Tell Others about TSA, by Melissa Haslebacher, National TSA Seargeant-at-Arms

Tackling Problems as a Team

By Sanjay Koduvalli, National TSA President


Have you ever found yourself sitting at a table, discussing an issue with a group of peers and thinking, "How are we ever going to work through this?"  Everyone has different perspectives on how to tackle an issue, and it is no simple feat to come to a consensus.  But if everyone works together to develop a solution, the outcome will be a much finer product than if any one person worked on it individually.  Here are a few tips to keep your team working together.


1.  Listen to everyone's ideas.  Everyone has an opinion, and everyone wants to be heard. A group will feel more satisfied with the process if they know that their idea has been considered.


2.  Make decisions as a group.  Although it's tempting to make choices yourself, every decision will affect every member on the team.  Team members will be more enthusiastic to work for a decision that they feel was made together, rather than one made by a single member.


3.  Express your appreciation.  Let people know that their contribution has been appreciated. Everyone's input has contributed to the end result, and letting people know that you appreciate their work will make everyone happier and more willing to develop a better end result.


Teamwork is one of the most efficient ways to accomplish a task, and when done properly, everyone will have a lot of fun along the way.  Enjoy applying these skills to your upcoming TSA events!


  The 2013-2014 National TSA Officer team is subsidized by DuPont.


DuPont has become one of the most innovative companies in the world because of their foundation of unending scientific inquiry. DuPont delivers science based solutions that make real differences in people's lives around the world in areas such as food and nutrition, health care, apparel, safety and security, construction, electronics and transportation. They are committed to safety and health; environmental stewardship; high ethical behavior; and respect for people.

Thank you, DuPont, for your support of this year's national officer team.



TSA Pride

By Sri Nimmagadda, National TSA Vice President 


Fall is here and excitement is in the air as both school and TSA activities are soon to come.  One of the greatest things about this organization is the level of pride that our members have for themselves as well as TSA.  So I encourage all of you to get excited and express your dedication for TSA during National TSA Week September 30-October 4, 2013!


National TSA Week is a week of recognition and celebration that allows all of the members to promote our wonderful organization and its exciting activities.  Students across the country raise awareness of TSA through field trips to local businesses, events for parents, and chapter community service projects.  It is also a great opportunity to promote bonding and camaraderie within the chapter.


Every year, my chapter celebrates National TSA Week with great flair. Students from Henry M. Jackson High School wear all their apparel from each of the state and national conferences they have attended, as well as the nametags from each respective conference.  Activities like these are a great way to start your TSA year off to a great start and get people excited!  


Rock the Royal Blue TSA Shirt

By EB Bollendonk, National TSA Secretary


Since the 2011 national TSA conference, TSA members have "rocked the royal" by wearing the official TSA blue shirts.  Starting at the 2014 national TSA conference in Washington, D.C., every TSA member will be required to wear the official TSA shirt as part of competition attire. 


Make certain to wear official TSA Competition Attire, General Session Attire, or Casual Attire as occasions may require.  Official conference attire is considered appropriate dress for related conference activities and public appearances.  To view the National TSA Dress Code, visit 


I am looking forward to attending the 2014 national TSA conference and seeing every member sporting the royal blue shirt, and "rocking the royal."


Community Service

By Sai Nimmagadda, National TSA Treasurer


As the new school year starts and TSA members resume school routines, many students also begin to search for opportunities to engage themselves outside of school.  Community involvement and service is a terrific way for TSA members to develop themselves personally and give back to society.  All of us, in some way, have benefitted from our community.  Communities have provided services, arranged activities, and provided the local support needed to be successful in our endeavors.  Community service is merely an extension of that investment society has made in us by giving back.


To some, the investment of personal time in community service is intimidating.  The key to community service, however, is not the hour count, but rather the work one has done.  Community service stoked by the passions of those doing the service is the key to both enjoying your service and making your time served effective.


TSA members have a history of community service.  Since 2004, TSA has had a partnership with the American Cancer Society (ACS).  Chapters and states across the country have gotten involved in fundraising and service projects for the ACS.  As a TSA member, consider the service opportunities at your school and in your community.  Look for ways for your TSA chapter to get involved.  By stoking those passions, TSA members will have a positive impact on their community.


New Middle School Competitive Events

By Hughston May, National TSA Reporter  


Attention middle school members!  TSA has introduced five new middle school competitive events!  Whether this is your first year in TSA, or your last before you move on to high school, try out one of these new and exciting events! 

Now is the time to branch out and discover new passions.  Push yourself to try new things.  You may discover skills you never knew you had.  You may find a career interest that you never considered.  Don't let this opportunity pass you by.  Regardless, it is better to take a risk than to later regret the lost chance. 


The five new middle school competitions are Energy Sources, Geospatial Technology, Junior Solar Sprint, STEM Animation, and Water Infrastructure.  I encourage you to explore the Middle School Competitive Events Overview posted on the national TSA website and decide which events appeal to you.


I challenge you to try a new competition this year.  You will not regret it!


Tell Others about TSA

By Melissa Haslebacher, National TSA Sergeant-at-Arms



It's a new school year, and that means it's time to recruit new TSA members!  Word of mouth is a great way to spread information, but there are so many other ways to tell students in your school about TSA. 


One popular way is to create posters advertising what TSA is all about and meeting times.  Make the posters colorful and hang them all over your school so everyone will have the opportunity to see them. 


Another way to get new members is to set up a TSA booth during lunch.  The booth could have a slideshow or a poster with pictures from past TSA events.  You can also provide information on competitions and your next meeting. This is great way to explain to your peers exactly what TSA is all about and to share your TSA experiences with them.   


A broadcast over the PA system in your school is also a great idea for announcing your first meeting. 


As with all extracurricular activities, be sure to get your school's permission to promote TSA. 


Best wishes for a great year with your new members!



The Technology Student Association fosters personal growth, leadership, and opportunities in technology, innovation, design, and engineering. Members apply and integrate science, technology, engineering, and mathematics concepts through co-curricular activities, competitive events, and related programs.
School Scene (ISSN 1066-341X) is published three times a year by the Technology Student Association, 1914 Association Drive, Reston, VA 20191-1540. Telephone: 703-860-9000; Fax: 703-758-4852. Web site:
Copyright 2008 TSA.