1. STCC students build 'solar suitcases' used by doctors in Kenya

    STCC students build 'solar suitcases' used by doctors in Kenya

    Teaching students about the real-world applications of science is one of professor Barbara Washburn's passions. The chairwoman of the physics department at Springfield Technical Community College, who has degrees in electrical and laser engineering, is constantly looking for ways to engage her students. Her most recent idea was to let students in her engineering class work with Gateway to College high school students to build "solar suitcases" that can be used by health workers and schools in third-world countries to provide light and electricity. According to the We Care Solar website, the suitcases that go to schools and community ...

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    1. I attended the Society of Women Engineers national conference with two other STCC professors last year and that's where I saw the We Care Solar demonstration.
    2. I think that based on my degrees and how serious I was about doing this, I was able to convince the company to trust us with this project.
    3. It was pretty interesting because just a few years ago we were high school students much like them and now we are directing them and helping them out.
    4. It was cool because you could tell some of the high school students were really getting interested in it and thinking about studying electrical engineering.
    5. I explained to them that the suitcases are providing light and emergency electricity. With these suitcases doctors are able to go into rural villages and charge cellphones, computers and medical equipment.
    6. It feels good to know we built something that would help people.
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