Abstract: The Millennial Generation requires their efforts to have meaning today which is often juxtaposed against industrial education and the attached silos. Engineering Brightness uses philanthropy and engineering to provide motivation and a foundation for the Millennial Generation to learn in all subject areas.
Engineering Brightness students design and build lights for some of the 1.5 billion people who do not have access to clean reliable light. One of the many ramifications of little clean light is the inability to study after sunset. Many students have to choose between sitting in the dark or burning brush, garbage or kerosene which have health, environmental and safety concerns. STEM, specifically electrical engineering, is used to solve this real problem for real people. Primary, middle and high school students from Colorado, Canada and the UK, collaborate in the process to produce different prototypes of lights.
Students interact with community members and local businesses to learn how to assemble circuits, the functioning of electrical components, sewing, 3D printing, world issues, health, language arts and philanthropy. The project motivates students in a novel way. If a student does mediocre work, it is much more devastating than a poor mark because someone else’s life is negatively impacted. The work supersedes a grade and survives the trash can at the end of the semester. Students are proud to be leaving a legacy, participating even after they moved on to another school.
Engineering Brightness, Philanthropic Engineering’s (http://p-e.io) flagship project, aims to deliberately engineer brightness literally and figuratively including in: · the room of studying students all over the world who otherwise do not have access to clean light. · the minds of students who bring many skills and aptitudes to bear in the design and production of lights. · the hearts of students who use their learning to impact the lives of others.