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MIT Spokes Program rides into town to teach students about STEM

MIT students discuss science at WKU
Published: Jun. 22, 2022 at 5:11 PM CDT
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BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) - Six Students. Six Bikes. 3,800 miles in 80 days.

MIT Spokes stopped in Bowling Green this morning to host a Learning Festival at the WKU Innovation Campus on Nashville Rd. The Innovation Campus provided classrooms, lunch, and snacks.

AccelerateKY, the statewide nonprofit headquartered in Bowling Green and formed through a partnership with MIT, is helping the Spokes team with their journey across the state and helped line up today’s event.

Around 40 local middle school children attended the free interactive workshops with modules on 3D printing, material science, electrical engineering, and philosophy.

Sophia Fang, one of the MIT students participating in Spokes, said “It’s a completely student-run project that happens every summer. This summer, we’re offering five different workshops. So we’re doing a circuits workshop, a physics of music workshop, 3D printing, making your own solar cells, and leaf chromatography.”

According to their website, Spokes is an MIT-based, non-profit, student-run initiative as part of an effort to rethink STEM education. The team is comprised of 7 undergraduate students at MIT who are bicycling across 3,800 miles of the U.S. over 80 days this summer and teaching Learning Festivals along the way.

Starting their mission from Washington DC and ending in San Francisco, they hope to share their knowledge and inspire future generations.

Another student with Spokes, Maxwell Yun, told WBKO about the importance of STEM. “Science by itself is a very interesting topic. It’s something that someone can read just endlessly about and find endless new applications. There is science to be found in every corner and crevice of this world and I think spreading the word about STEM I hope we can kindle some interest in this all-encompassing field and inspire some students to study this in their college careers and beyond.”

Maxwell is also documenting the trip through his love of photography.

The members of 2022 Spokes began their cross country journey at the Lincoln Memorial in...
The members of 2022 Spokes began their cross country journey at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. (Photo by Maxwell Yun, MIT Spokes)(WBKO)

The Hyatt Place Bowling Green is providing local housing for the MIT students during their stay in town to support their mission and workshops.

This is the 8th annual Spokes cross-country trip; it is this group’s 22nd day on the road. Their journey is estimated to end in August when they ride across the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, CA.

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