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April 30, 2024

By Kristen Perrone, Communications Manager

After months of meticulous preparation, Fieldston Upper’s Engineering Club students recently produced machines that qualified to compete in the National Rube Goldberg Machine Competition (RGMC) at Purdue University. Students were tasked to create contraptions that would complete several intricate maneuvers to put toothpaste on a toothbrush successfully. The 10th Grade team’s “Rubenheimer” machine snagged the People’s Choice Award, while the 11th Graders and their “Pirate” machine became the high school national champions, having achieved three successful runs without human intervention — only one of two teams to accomplish this in competition history!

Host of the event and Rube Goldberg Machine Expert Zach Umperovitch shared, “From the creative designs, superb quality of each machine, and exceptional enthusiasm displayed at the event, it leaves me zero doubt that every Fieldston student present at the 2024 National RGMC will become Contraption Masters themselves as they forge ahead towards their next projects.”⁠

Following the teams’ victories, Sophia T. ’26 was also quoted in a “New York Times” article about her experience creating a Rube Goldberg machine. The Fieldston Upper teams’ national competition machine presentations may be viewed here, at approximately 4 hours and 42 minutes. Their recognition during the awards ceremony is viewable here and here.

Congratulations to all of our Eagle engineers and faculty members, Paul Church, Palma Repole, and Ruth Taveras!