Building a boat for a solar boat challenge is a difficult task, but students who are engaged at 40 different schools are developing some very impressive skills.

Solar Boat ChallengeAt Coast High, Jessica Cochran never thought about building a boat, although she has grown up on them.  She never had much interest in woodwork or engineering, but became interested in the Solar Cup competition after hearing classmates discuss it.

“I was useless when it came to power tools,” she said. “Now, you should see me with a sander — it’s pretty impressive!”

Coast’s Solar Cup Team with build a solar powered boat, and enter it in a race against high schools from various counties throughout California.

“It’s expanded my horizons,” Cochran said. “The first day, I thought, ‘I’m going to be awful at this, so I’ll let them take the reins,’ but then I got into it.”

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