Odyssey of the Mind (OM) is all about problem solving — and the C.J. Hooker Middle School team showed they could overcome any obstacle thrown their way at the 2022 World Finals, where the team took first place.
Seven students on the winning team, lead by coach Heidi Seligman, made the journey to Iowa State University for World Finals last weekend. For the families that traveled by car, it was a 17 hour drive.
But the truck that had all of Goshen’s props inside almost didn’t make the trip, breaking down along the way. Afraid the students weren’t going to have their materials and sets in time for the competition, their time slot was moved.
Luckily, a replacement truck was sent and transferred their props to a new vehicle in time. But unluckily, multiple props arrived damaged, broken during the transfer. “They lost wheels, they lost wood pieces,” said Seligman.
With just a few hours to spare before the competition, the students jumped into action, fixing what they could and finding different ways to repair their props.
“Watching them, I was just paralyzed,” said Seligman. Coaches from other states were watching the C.J. Hooker students scramble to fix their set, too. “One lady was crying watching them,” added Seligman.
Despite the challenges, C.J. Hooker’s team took the stage with repaired props and emerged victorious, taking first place at the competition.
“It’s what it’s all about, problem solving,” said Seligman.