U-M Program Steers Detroit Kids Toward STEM Careers
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First Robotics gave him a snapshot of careers in computer science and robotics. He says until he joined the robotics team, he didn’t participate in school activities much. By his junior year, he was on the student council, in the chess club, and the president of the National Honors Society. First Robotics taught him how to problem-solve, as the mentors are careful to let the students figure out how to design and program robots. By his senior year, he was teaching his fellow First Robotics teammates. “The MEZ teaches you fellowship, leadership, and how to work in groups,” he adds.
Murabito says Durrah personifies why the MEZ’s outreach is so important, particularly in a school district as troubled and underfunded as DPS. The MEZ is now at the point where it can’t accept any more students in its robotics program.
Much to Murabito’s dismay, the MEZ had to turn schools away last year. “We have a successful model and we’d love to expand, but we need more funding,” she adds. “We’re always looking for more mentors and corporate funding.”