BRIGHT FUTURES — Mason Dixon finds passion after STEM camp; 13-year-old is a “robotics enthusiast”

Published 12:28 am Wednesday, May 10, 2023

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Last summer, Mason Dixon was one of 94 students who attended the Brilliance Academy of the Port Arthur Independent School District, spearheaded by husband and wife educators Meliton and Asther Reyes.

And that one STEM-based camp made Dixon a robotics enthusiast, changing his current and future course.

“The robotics competition is about working together as a team, building and coding robots to get to a goal that we need to accomplish,” said Dixon, 13. “I like playing with the drones and building robots to code them.”

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Dixon is in seventh grade at Thomas Jefferson Middle School.

“He’s just a scholar student, a student you would want on your campus,” said Principal Kristi Lewis. “I wish I had a thousand more of him. But fortunately I’m glad to just have him, because he brings a lot to our campus — just him being an exemplary student and setting the tone for the students here because we do have high expectations and standards, and he exceeds them.”

In addition to his involvement in robotics, Dixon is an honor-roll student who enjoys science, math and social studies.

But he knows his challenges.

“One of my challenges is not focusing as much as I should or getting distracted easily,” Dixon said.

Still, he overcomes.

“He’s a good kid,” Lewis said. “He’s articulate. He makes good grades.”

In his spare time, Dixon enjoys playing the violin and is learning to play the piano. He began playing the violin when he was a second grade student at Bob Hope Elementary.

“My mom still had the phone number of my violin teacher, so they got together and earlier last year I started practicing,” he said. “I was at a music concert at my church this winter. I like listening to music. I don’t make music, but beats and stuff.”

Outside of his expected curriculum, Dixon already has a goal for when he enters high school.

“I was thinking about doing something where they help engineers come up with ideas and bring them to life to better the world around them,” he said. “I like coming up with stuff and putting things together.”

Following high school, Dixon hopes to find a career in which he can create his own businesses that helps create jobs for others.

Dixon is the son of Melissa Dixon and James Clark Dixon Jr., and the grandson of Ella Jean Hope.

RELATED: Learn more about the Brilliance Academy