Aerospace Engineering Students Support After-School STEM Program

Beverly Keane’s after-school STEM club has a few V.I.P’s.  Nicholas Taluzek and Chi Young are both in their final year at the Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) studying Aerospace Engineering. While on a walk through campus, Nicholas noticed an informational flyer on a local after-school STEM club. He knew immediately that he wanted to help. He shared the information with a fellow student, Chi Young.  Both gentlemen are now volunteering their time at Mark Sheridan Academy in Chicago in hopes of making a difference in STEM education.

The IIT students admit they had little or no experiences with science or engineering at a young age. Nicholas grew up in Chicago and enjoyed performing arts.  However, during his senior year in high school, a new passion for engineering was sparked.

Chi Young was born in South Korea and has always dreamed of being an astronaut. As a child, he remembers being fascinated with watching space shuttle launches on TV.  With the support of his parents, he pursued his dream by moving to the United States.  He lived with his aunt and uncle and began to study.  He recalls attending high school with very limited resources in its Science Lab.  When he heard about the after-school program, he immediately wanted to work with students who also had an interest in STEM disciplines.

He shares, “I see it as a way to make sure these students have something I desperately wanted in my school.”

So how do you ignite a STEM frenzy in an after-school STEM Club? Create. The IIT students shared a few of their own creations, including a Electromyography (EMG) Circuit and an Ultrasonic sensor.  Check out their creations below.

msu afterschool club

Young and Taluzek support the students in problem-solving skills through inquiry-based conversations. Circuit Kits, MakeyMakey Kits, and other electronic materials have sparked all sorts of new creations!  Both gentlemen have been very impressed with the amount of creativity that shines (literally!) with the circuitry kits.

Beverly Keane is delighted to have these two STEM supporters on board!  She states, “It is  a pleasure having Nick and Chi as part of our club.  The students love having them here for guidance on projects and they especially enjoyed when Nick and Chi brought in their own engineering inventions to share with the club.”

She describes them as knowledgeable, patient, kind, and willing to jump right in and help.  A big thanks to Nick and Chi in supporting the value of STEM education and inspiring youngsters to further their interests in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics!