Our first program in Latin America: A reality

The entire ELiTE development team and most recently our group of volunteers has spent over a year figuring out every detail of making this dream a reality. As ELiTE, we have come a long way and continue to grow thanks to the rising support of those who believe in our mission and continue to step up to the challenge to help us bring technology, science and engineering education to new communities around the world. Our Summer Institute for Technology and Engineering (SITE) in Mexico has been a challenge in many dimensions but we are incredibly excited to start classes this upcoming Monday July 8, 2013.

SITE: Mexico will be our very first program in Spanish, and in a foreign language altogether. From developing the curricula, to fundraising, ordering materials, building relationships with the local community partners and recruiting volunteer facilitators and teachers for the program, we have spent countless hours preparing for the program to ensure its success. We have developed a robust 3 week schedule of interactive sessions, lectures and experiments that will immerse our students in chemistry, mechatronics, electronics and programming. Through these interactive sessions, the students will learn to think outside the box, develop problem solving skills and to apply scientific and technical concepts through hands-on experimentation. They will develop their own code for simple word games, create batteries and solenoids with house hold materials, build their own calorimeter and program their own robot!

In addition to the classes facilitated by the ELiTE local team, our students will also get a first-hand instruction from astrophysicists, engineers, scientists and professors at our host institution and partner at the “Instituto Nacional de Astrofísica, Óptica y Electronica” (INAOE- National International Institute of Astrophysics, Optics and Electronics). INAOE will provide astrophysics and optics lectures and hands on workshops for our students in addition to tour of their research facilities and a special visit to The Large Millimeter Telescope (largest of its kind in the world!).

We are incredibly grateful for our local partner and host, INAOE (http://www.inaoep.mx), for providing the facilities, resources and support making our first program in Latin America possible. We would also like to thank our SITE: Mexico program director Sam Bhattacharyya for all of his hard work and dedication to this program and for making it possible for ELiTE to reach new communities. We are also excited for Kiara, Leslie, Rosa, Ximena and Christian who will facilitate their first ELiTE SITE. We thank YOU for supporting us and following our journey. Stay tuned for the development of the program, pictures and day to day updates through our Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/elite2009).

-Ximena

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