Inside California Education: Engineering a Future

Inside California Education: Engineering a Future

September 2, 2019 1 By Ronny Jaskolski


♪♪ Nathaniel: So basically this
blue rail right here you see that? This ground has to
go to that blue rail. And the next one
would be echo. Marinda: These students are
engaging with engineers through a unique program called NSBE. Gary: NSBE is an
acronym for the National Society
of Black Engineers. It’s an organization that’s
dedicated to increasing the number of culturally
responsible black engineers who excel academically,
succeed professionally and positively impact
the black community. Nathaniel: I wasn’t exposed to
STEM and what it could do for me until I was
already in college. So I really hope that you
guys take these experiences and these sessions and
really work with them, and see if it is
right for you. But learn
something at least. Nathaniel: These kids are
engaging with technology and products of engineering
continuously every day. It directs our lives. Having these students have a
better understanding of what they’re interacting with
from an early age is going to help improve their
academics and help them understand what’s to come. Who’s excited for today? Marinda: NSBE was started in
1975 by six engineering students at Purdue University. There had been various
groups of black engineering students all around
the country that existed independently. They would bring all of
these engineers together to create the National
Society of Black Engineers. Today NSBE now includes more
than 500 chapters and nearly 16,000 active
members in the U.S. and abroad. NSBE chapters
include collegiate, professional, and
pre-collegiate members, with 11 NSBE Junior chapters
throughout California. Megan: What’s the difference
between speed and velocity? Student: Speed is like how
fast you are going… Nathaniel: I work with
recruiting professionals in Silicon Valley the East
Bay NSBE junior chapter. And what we do is we work
with delivering STEM to these students from
second grade to 12th grade. Frances: Primarily the program
is facilitated by what we call coaches who are all
professional engineers and college
engineering students. ♪♪ Megan: 363! ♪♪ Marinda: NSBE chapters hold
programs throughout the school year, including weekend,
over the summer and after school. For this chapter meeting
at Pittsburg High School, class starts bright and
early Saturday morning. Megan: First law again? Student: Object at rest
stays at rest. An object in motion stays in
motion in the same speed and same direction unless acted
upon by an unbalanced force. Megan: -Yes! You guys get me so
excited about physics, I love it! Frances: Most of the classes
that are taught here at NSBE the kids are learning
scientific inquiry, the engineering
process, presentations. They’re learning skills
that are transferable to any career or any
class that they have. Arielle:So now both you guys are
going to work together and you’re actually
going to build this. This is the propulsion
system we’re working on right now. Marinda: NSBE is not meant to
replace what’s happening in the classroom. Instead, it supplements what
students are being taught. Megan: 1-2! Gary: There’s certain
aspects of classroom learning that can be
mundane to a student, particularly a student who’s
highly bright and highly active and may not want to
pay attention all the time, but you take that same
student and give them something to build or
something to construct or something to enact, that
student then gets motivated, Marinda: NSBE helps to stimulate
and reinforce the opportunities that are in reach to
students through the study of engineering. Teaching students to
think for themselves. Kimberly: My son is
the light of my world. And I wanted him to be
part of NSBE for multiple reasons. I wanted him to be part
of an organization that esteemed education, that
made it normal to be smart, and that made it
fun to be smart, and to be Black. …make it go higher. Gary: We can see athletes
and entertainers and even doctors and lawyers on
television and in media. We don’t often
see engineers, scientists or STEM
professionals depicted in a popular media I think
programs like NSBE will continue to be necessary
until we reach parity, until this
underrepresentation is no longer a thing and when the
numbers of African American and African diaspora
engineers are at the same levels as levels
in the population, then we won’t need to
talk about this anymore. We’ve made a lot of
progress certainly, but we’ve got a
long way to go. Megan: Who can tell me what the
difference between average speed and
instantaneous speed is? Makayla. Average speed is your speed
over a whole length of time, and instantaneous speed is
speed at a certain moment. Megan: Yes, perfect. Frances: I see
the successes, I see the kids
graduating from college. I see the parents being
proud of their children because they’ve
succeeded in something. Alright! Nathaniel: The reward to me
is now being able to be a product of NSBE, be a
product of my community, and then also help out
additional communities. Marinda: Supporters say it’s not
realistic to expect that every student exposed
to NSBE will become an engineer. But they say programs like
these provide a foundation to build on for the future. Gary: I would tell parents
to give your son or daughter a chance and let them
be exposed to this. You may decide or they may
decide that it’s not for them but I’m a parent myself
and my philosophy has always been to expose my daughters
to as much as possible, let them chart their
own path after that. Megan: On the count of
three: 1-2-3! Narr: If you drive on roads
or use electronic devices, you can thank an engineer. Engineers play key roles
in creating all kinds of structures and products,
from airports to bridges, from home appliances
to farm machinery. Tens of thousands of
engineering jobs are expected to open in
the coming decade, with a median salary of
$91,000 dollars a year.