UL students going global

BELMONT – After winning honors for creativity, teamwork and problem solving in local and state tournaments, Union Local Elementary School’s “The Team with No Name” has earned the right to travel to Destination Imagination’s Global Finals which will be held May 22-25 in Knoxville, Tenn.

Team members include fifth graders Paige Funkhouser, Nicole Puperi and Paoli Roberts and fourth graders Megan Garrison, Starbuck Roberts and Claude Romshak.

They will compete with other teams in the “Change in Realitee” challenge, one of seven open-ended challenges that require young people to apply science, technology, engineering and math skills, in addition to improvisation, theater arts, writing, project management, communication, innovation, teamwork and community service. Destination Imagination has been called “the largest creative thinking and problem solving competition in the world.”

“For the first time in Union Local’s history, we are sending a team to the Global Finals,” says Team Manager Robin Romshak. “We are just thrilled. The kids have worked so hard all school year for this, and they really deserve a chance to go.”

This year, more than 100,000 young people participated in Destination Imagination tournaments throughout the United States and in 30 countries with the goal of earning a spot at the Global Finals. The Union Local team is among more than 1,250 teams and 10,000 students advancing to this stage, held at the University of Tennessee.

“This is my first year in DI,” added Nicole Puperi. “But this is the most awesome time I’ve ever had!”

Romshak notes that “The Team with No Name” is now working to meet the challenge of funding their trip to finals and would be “deeply grateful” for any financial assistance. For information about sponsorships, contact Robin Romshak at (740) 310-2009 or Shawna Roberts at (740) 484-9001. Checks can also be made out to “ULES PTO” (specify “DI” in the memo) and mailed to Union Local Elementary School, 66699 Belmont-Morristown Rd., Belmont, Ohio 43718.