Press Release: Bay Area Students Present Their Work in Technology and the Sciences

CONTACT:  Holly Trippett, Public Relations Associate, Citizen Schools          301-452-3904,

         Faith Lin, Civic Engagement Manager, Citizen Schools





Bay Area Students Present Their Work in Technology and The Sciences

Middle schoolers showcase hands-on STEM experiences at EMC Corporation

May 21, 2013 – Redwood City, CA – Citizen Schools is hosting a region-wide event celebrating middle school students’ impressive science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) projects sponsored by EMC Corporation. Over the last 10 weeks, students have participated in enrichment apprenticeships taught by volunteer professionals who have shared their knowledge and passion in exciting and engaging ways. Tuesday’s WOW! event -- named after the reaction most adults have after seeing the projects -- is a chance for students to become the experts and teach-back what they have learned during their apprenticeships.

President Obama has created initiatives urging effective strategies in education, specifically in STEM education. Citizen Schools is on the front lines of this work, providing students with a longer learning day and hands-on projects that foster authentic learning experiences. By having community volunteers, or Citizen Teachers, sharing their passion, students have the advantage of learning real-life skills, creating connections to their school work and future professions.

The STEM WOW! event will take place on May 21st, at EMC from 5:30-7:30PM. During the event, students and Citizen Teachers, representing four Bay Area schools and 11 different apprenticeships, will showcase their work. There will also be a special spotlight on The Tech Challenge apprenticeship.

The Tech Challenge apprenticeship taught students design thinking as a process to apply to any problem. The project culminated with a competition at The Tech Museum of Innovation, where 3,000 students from Northern California competed to land a sensitive instrument package (represented by an egg) on a rocky asteroid surface. Students compiled a notebook documenting their design process and presented to a panel of judges. All Citizen Schools teams successfully landed at least one package at the event.

Keren Pavese, Program Manager at EMC, and one of the first Citizen Teachers to teach The Tech Challenge apprenticeship, noted, “Throughout this apprenticeship, the students worked through challenges, and leveraged team effort, determination, and creativity to reach their goals. It truly has been an honor to teach Citizen Schools’ students, to see their excitement for The Tech Challenge, and to witness a small idea grow into something much bigger.”

During Tuesday’s event, presenting apprenticeships include: There’s an App for That; Robotics; Women in Business; What is a Computer; and more. Projects will be reviewed by special guest judges, including one of the founders of Pandora and currently the CFO of OnLive, Etienne Handman; OnLive COO and Acting CEO, Charlie Jablonski; Vice President of Operations at The Tech Museum of Innovation, Bill Bailor; and Vice President of Engineering at AfterCollege, Steve Girolami.

About Citizen Schools

Citizen Schools is a national nonprofit organization that partners with middle schools to expand the learning day for low-income children across the country. Citizen Schools uniquely mobilizes thousands of adult volunteers to help improve student achievement by teaching skill-building apprenticeships. The organization’s programs blend these real-world learning projects with rigorous academic and leadership development activities, preparing students in the middle grades for success in high school, college, the workforce, and civic life.

Founded in Boston in 1995, Citizen Schools has grown into a national network of thirty-one partner schools serving over 5,300 students in low-income communities across eight states. The organization partners with seven schools in the Bay Area, serving over 1,110 students and engaging approximately 300 volunteers in the academic year.

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