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SOL test scores: Mixed bag

Halifax makes the grade half of the time with passing rates, but dropoffs outnumber gains

Judge nixes lawsuit by motorsports instructor

Case dismissed after Wilborn contested firing

Jobless rate rises to 8.8 percent in July

Halifax County’s unemployment rate jumped from 8.3 percent in June to 8.8 percent in July. Over 900 people left the labor force, which numbered 15,974 in June, but fell to…

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Comets fall in opener to Jefferson Forest

A quick, athletic Jefferson Forest squad proved too potent offensively for the Halifax County High School varsity football squad Friday night, speeding past the Comets, 50-30, in South Boston.

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Out of This World

South Boston News
Ethan Rosche, 17, of Halifax, was selected to participate in a space engineering camp at NASA last month.
SoVaNow.com / July 11, 2013
It wasn’t enough merely to apply to this educational summer camp; Ethan Rosche had to spend months taking a preparatory class beforehand.

The 17-year-old Halifax County High School rising senior went to the Virginia Aerospace Science and Technology Scholars (VASTS) camp. There, he spent a week at NASA’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, immersed in science, technology and engineering. Working in groups, Ethan and his peers were charged with planning a mock mission to Mars – among the considerations were budget, time frame, objectives of the trip, payload weights, power sources and, Ethan cracks, “keeping the crew alive, obviously.”

But before the fun and excitement of NASA, Ethan spent some of his winter and spring in an online class designed to prepare participants for the projects they’d do as well as eliminate students who weren’t hard workers. There were papers to write, reading assignments, quizzes and discussion forums. “A pretty good chunk of time,” he says, in his spare time. But the payoff was acceptance to VAST.

Ethan says the coolest experience at the program was watching several 3-D printers. They made metal parts, mocked up models and spit out a little NASA pendant. He also learned about crunching numbers and working in teams on group projects.

“It was a great educational experience,” he says.

The program is a partnership between the Virginia Space Grant Consortium and NASA Langley Research Center with assistance from the Virginia Department of Education.

But don’t necessarily expect Ethan to be the next rocket scientist for NASA. Actually, he’s more interested in mechanical engineering thanks to the influence of a cousin.

Ethan is the son of Dr. William and Lisa Rosche of Halifax.

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