The new game is called OUTBREAK and simulates the current coronavirus pandemic.
Mississippi BEST is designed to inspire and interest students in engineering, science, and technology through participation in an exciting sports-like technology contest. The BEST competition motivates students by challenging them to build a remote-controlled robot that accomplishes a defined task within a competitive setting. A mentor and a school coach guide student teams through the engineering process.
Using only the materials provided, students have six weeks to design, develop, and test a robot that can outperform their competitors. During this time, the students experience the same problems, challenges, and breakthroughs that an engineering team encounters when it takes a product to market. In both cases, there are team dynamics, time constraints, material constraints, and pressure from other teams who are trying to solve the same problem. Placed in a real situation, with real problems, the students provide real (and surprisingly ingenious) solutions. The weeks of hard work culminate in a thrilling day long competition where one team achieves “BEST” performance. The inspiring even combines the excitement of a high school football game with the strategy of a chess match and the intellectual challenge of a science fair.
The heart of BEST is experience of solving a seemingly overwhelming task using simple engineering methods and old-fashioned teamwork. Thanks to this experience, students who participate in BEST are better prepared to meet the challenges of the future.