Formula Buckeyes Pay it Forward with the PAST Foundation

Posted: November 1, 2019

Formula Buckeyes at PAST
The Formula Buckeyes student motorsports team volunteers at the PAST Foundation twice a week.

The Formula Buckeyes recently facilitated a STEM related project with the PAST Foundation. PAST is a non-profit educational and research team that builds partnerships around compelling scientific and educational projects, making them more accessible to students and the public.

“Getting a base knowledge and some fun hands-on experience in this area at such a young age is only going to help these kids grow personally, and eventually change the world we live in,” said Nick Kopycinski, a fifth year mechanical engineering student and co-lead on Formula Buckeyes. “As college engineering students, we were in their shoes several years ago, and we are so excited to be able to help. Some of us even called the PAST Innovation Lab home at this age. We have members on the team who worked with PAST as young students and getting to return the favor is a blessing.”

Most recently the team led the students through a project developed by the Society of Automotive Engineers International (SAE) where they were tasked with designing and creating a gravity/lever powered cruiser using a premade chassis template and a number of household supplies such as rubber bands and paperclips. The team members instructed the students on the steps to be taken during their project, asked the students questions about their work and challenged them to think of new solutions to the problems they were solving.

Formula at PAST
The Formula Buckeyes are dedicated to the PAST Foundation and make a commitment to volunteer there twice a week.

“Being able to see the young students work through a problem in their heads and finally come up with a valid solution is something you can’t undervalue. Being able to help guide their critical thinking and problem solving in a way that makes a lasting impression is an unbeatable experience,” said Kopycinski. “Plus, these kids are hilarious and bright, and continue to make the team laugh. It’s interesting to get to see what we, as college students, were probably like at this point in our lives from an adult’s perspective.”

Written by Muhammed Al Refai, CAR Marketing and Communications Intern