by Lisa Tome
They spanned the globe and came home with third place medals.
The Destination Imagination team, whose members include students from Rising Sun High and The Tome School, took on the world and came home winners.
Destination Imagination is a worldwide endeavor whose mission is to "teach students the creative process and empower them with the skills needed to succeed in an ever-changing world." They competed in Globals, featuring teams from around the world, held in Tennessee May 23-27. The locals nailed it.
Brett Darling managed the team.
Team members from Rising Sun High are Maura Elburn, junior, Logan Garvin, freshman and the team's only male member, Victoria Stauffer, junior, Maya Meehan, sophomore, and Emma Cease, sophomore. Lindsey Darling, is a junior at The Tome School.
The team competed as an independent. All of the members except Garvin have been on teams in the past. They worked for eight months, practicing every Sunday at the Darling's home.
This year, students competing in DI were charged with the task of telling a story about a color that disappears and the impact that would have on society. Destination also encourages using a variety of skills - script writing, coding, building, art/design, science, technology, engineering, and math.
For this team, the color they selected to remove was red which led to the bronze medals.
Brett Darling has coached various configurations of DI teams for nearly a decade. This was the first time the team made it to Globals after five near misses. Lindsey Darling, Elburn, Cease, and Meehan have competed together for four years on DI teams.
"This is the most diverse group I've ever had. They each bring a different quality and they all work together well. This is a nice core group. Different people lead at different times for different challenges," said Brett Darling.
"I definitely didn't expect it. You go to Globals for just the experience. It was a really surprising, overwhelming, and proud moment," said Elburn.
With Garvin being the only male team member and Lindsey Darling attending a different high school, you'd think there would be division. Not so with this team. "I went to Rising Sun up until last year. I'm here all the time. We have a big group chat," she said.
Garvin said he's been preparing to deal with women all of his life. He has three sisters. "They (teammates) are all better than my sisters. This was a lot of fun," laughed Garvin.
All the team members said they took something away from the DI experience. Teamwork, cooperation, brainstorming, the ability to share and express ideas, and more.
"I've discovered a love for problem solving and creative thinking. I like teamwork and brainstorming. I learned to be a leader," said Stauffer. "This has made me discover a lot about myself.
They collected a team trophy, individual medals and the satisfaction of knowing they were among the best of the 19,000 competitors. The team is uncertain whether they will come back again to competition next year. Some want to continue while others want to rest on their laurels with the third place Global win.