Students in our region have a new opportunity to learn about science and technology thanks to a critical new program headquartered in Kingsport.
It’s called STREAMWORKS – a partnership with Eastman Chemical Company.
STREAMWORKS just opened a brand new “Stem Gym” in downtown Kingsport, to serve as a place for students to build robots or practice for robotics competitions. That could open up doors for them to eventually land a job in science or engineering.
DB-Excel sophomore Gavin Bentley built an ROV – remotely operated vehicle – that works underwater.
“We started a couple months ago with just a box of parts,” Gavin said.
The robot was constructed in a classroom, but now, Gavin and other students have a new workshop in downtown Kingsport. It’s a facility with centralized resources for kids to learn and build robots.
“We needed a place for these kids to be able to prototype and build with high ceilings,” said STREAMWORKS Executive Director, Dennis Courtney. “The goal is to promote healthy communities through economic 21st century work force development. We want to see every kid go pro. We want to see that every kid gets a chance.”
Teaching lessons that extend far beyond a text book and making a lasting impact on the economy and community.
“Education is your way out of poverty, education is your way out of prison, education is your way out of drugs, education is your way to hope and peace,” Courtney said.
That’s something that Courtney says can start in the STREAMWORKS building, a place he hopes paves the way for students like Gavin to a future stem career.
“Those of us who really care about our secondary education and our life after high school, this is really just the step that we needed to get there,” said Gavin.
STREAMWORKS is looking for other community partners, too. If you’re interested, head to their website – www.streamworkseducation.org.
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