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Students preparing for recovery from future natural disasters

Posted at 9:34 AM, Jan 17, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-17 09:34:07-05

TONAWANDA, N.Y. (WKBW) — Western New York students are thinking critically about how communities can bounce back from natural disasters like Hurricane Maria.

Students all across the country are vying for a national title in the "Future City" competition. Each year the competition has a different theme and the theme for 2019 is 'Powering Our Future'. This means students are tasked with finding solutions to cities affected by natural disasters, like how to still have functional waste disposal without water or how to restore power to homes.

The 7th and 8th graders at St. Christopher's in Tonawanda have been competing for more than a decade, placing high regionally. They're hoping their project this year lands them an all-expenses paid trip to Washington D.C. to compete in the national finals. Students have worked for months, writing an essay, creating a virtual city, preparing an oral presentation, a visual presentation and their model city. They've incorporated toilets that work without the need of a widespread sewer system and even concrete that reflects heat, keeping cities cooler.

The regional competition in Western New York will be held at Mount Saint Mary's on January 19th from 9 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. 29 teams of students will compete.