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York Tech student invited to NASA; Fort Mill High’s Buzz TV ranked best in country

York Technical College

Highlights of what people and businesses are achieving in the York County region.

York Tech student invited to NASA program

York Technical College student Jason Ream, 36, is headed to NASA’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, Va., April 14-17 as part of the NASA Community College Aerospace Scholars Onsite Experience.

Ream, a Chester resident and computer technology major, was one of 403 community college students in the country to be selected, according to York Tech.

“Jason is one of those students that makes teaching easy. He is obsessed with his chosen field of study and he is like a sponge - absorbing anything and everything about the subject,” James Thomas, associate dean for business and computers, said in a statement. “This is an opportunity for Jason to learn with the absolute best and brightest in the field.”

Ream completed a five-week online activity leading up to the four-day event at the NASA Center. Participants have the opportunity to talk with NASA engineers and learn about careers in science and engineering, according to York Tech.

While on-site, students will work in teams to establish fictional companies aimed at Mars exploration. They will develop and test a prototype rover, manage a company budget and develop company communications.

Ream will earn his associate’s degree in May.

“My [NCAS] application essay described how as a child I always dreamt of an opportunity to go to Space Camp,” Ream said in the statement. “I realize that the opportunity before me is the culmination of so many failed attempts at so many things so that I could have the opportunity to have my childhood dream come true.”

York County event honored for tourism

S.C. Gov. Heny McMaster presented the Charles A. Bundy Award honoring outstanding tourism promotion in February to Visit York County for the YoCo Brew Trail.

The challenge, launched in September 2018, invites participants to sample craft beer at five breweries, a cidery and a beer bottle company in York, Rock Hill and Fort Mill, according to Visit York County. Participants can track their progress on a digital passport.

As of February, more than 1,300 people had signed up for the trail and more than 200 have completed it, according to Visit York County. More than 2,500 stops at participating breweries has generated at least $65,000.

“The YoCo Brew Trail has been a tremendous success for our team at Visit York County, but more importantly for our team of breweries, cidery and shops along the trail,” Billy Dunlap, president and CEO with Visit York County, said in a statement. “The YoCo Brew Trail continues to be a great way to uniquely experience the tastes of York County, and to be presented with such a prestigious award was a great honor and one that we are excited to bring back to York County.”

Fort Mill High’s Buzz TV wins national award

Fort Mill High School’s student television program, Buzz TV, was named the Best Weekly High School Broadcast in the country last month during the National Student Television Broadcast and Film competition.

It’s the second time Buzz TV has taken home that award, according to Fort Mill school district.

Buzz TV also won three first-place awards, and a second and fourth place.

“Everyone always gets super excited when sports teams win a state championship, and we just won best in the nation,” said Karin McKemey, program instructor. “It’s just huge to think that we can shine such a spotlight on our little town in South Carolina. When we go to nationals and say we are from Fort Mill, people recognize our town as the best of the best.”

Tega Cay teen earns Eagle Scout

Jacob Patete of Boy Scout Troop 250 for Fort Mill and Tega Cay earned his Eagle Scout after months of work, his mother Marcia Patete said.

Jacob is 16 and a junior at Fort Mill High School.

He built two handicap-accessible swings in October at Trailhead Park in Tega Cay.

He raised more than $6,000 for the project by going door-to-door, giving presentations to the Tega Cay Lions Club and selling candy at local events, Patete said.

The Tega Cay Lions, city of Tega Cay and Piedmont Regional Association of Realtors all contributed to the project.

Tega Cay is working to make Trailhead Park an inclusive playground for all children.

Jacob earned his Eagle Scout on March 4. He will be honored in a ceremony on June 9, Patete said.

Winthrop University named ‘Voter Friendly Campus’

Campus Vote Project and National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA) in Higher Education, national nonpartisan organizations, have named Winthrop University a Voter Friendly Campus.

Winthrop was chosen for its leadership’s efforts in educating students on the election process and encouraging them to vote in the 2018 mid-term election, according to a statement from the college.

“The mission of the Voter Friendly Campus designation is to bolster efforts that help students overcome barriers to participating in the political process,” the statement reads. “Winthrop was evaluated based on a campus plan about how the university would engage student voters, how it facilitated voter engagement efforts on the campus and a final analysis of the institution’s efforts.”

Winthrop student voting ambassadors handed out voter registration cards and flyers encouraging students to vote. The ambassadors registered more than 300 students, according to the university.

Winthrop is one of two South Carolina universities to receive the designation. Winthrop also was named a Voter Friendly Campus in 2017, according to the university.

“This is the second time Winthrop has received this designation in the past two years,” Winthrop President Dan Mahony said in a prepared statement. “I am proud of the collaboration that took place across the campus in encouraging voting, discussing current issues of the day and bringing candidates to campus.”

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Amanda Harris covers issues related to children and families in York, Chester and Lancaster County for The Herald. Amanda works with local schools, parents and community members to address important topics such as school security, mental health and the opioid epidemic. She graduated from Winthrop University.
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