EMC: Making the Digital Real

Aunt Diane’s on-line photo album documenting her recent vacation to Florida. The receipts for the holiday presents you ordered over the Internet. The sentimental emails you’ve been saving in your inbox. What do all of these things have in common? They all represent digital information, and they all need to be stored somewhere so that you can access them securely, whenever you want. On recent field trips to EMC’s offices in California, Massachusetts and North Carolina, Citizen Schools students learned all about digital information and how they interact with this information every day. They also learned about the computers that store all of this information, and the manufacturing process that EMC goes through to create them.

Students toured EMC’s facilities, asked questions of EMC’s volunteers and put their new knowledge to the test by designing improvements to the iPod. They identified needs that they wished the iPod would address, solutions to fulfill those needs, and then walked through how to design, manufacture and sell their improvements.

Keren Pavese, Program Manager at EMC in California, said, “What an inspiration these students were. I was so impressed with their passion, enthusiasm and creativity. The difference one mentor can make in their lives is incredible. I feel very fortunate to have participated in this event and am looking forward to becoming a Citizen Teacher myself!”

“Our school is a Science and Technology themed school," said Megan Bird, Campus Director for Citizen Schools at Garfield Middle School in Revere, Massachusetts, "All of our students have at least two hours per day of instruction in science. Unfortunately, they rarely have the opportunity to make the connection between their lessons at school and what a career in science would be like as an adult.  The lucky students who attended the field trip gained a better understanding of the manufacturing process from engineers who are experts in their field.  The EMC volunteers did a fantastic job relating the material to technology the kids use every day and making the work that goes on at EMC ‘cool’ and relevant.”

EMC Corporation is the world's leading developer and provider of information infrastructure technology and solutions that enable organizations of all sizes to transform the way they compete and create a value from their information. The company is a committed national STEM supporter of Citizen Schools and their volunteers have taught apprenticeships from bike repair to electrical engineering.