August 2013 Newsletter
In This Issue

Team of E2@MIT students builds and tests underwater robots

Start-up co-founder shares experiences in entrepreneurship with MOSTEC students

Researchers from Dana-Farber Cancer Institute connect math lessons from CORE program with cancer research

Meet the new OEOP team!
In the past two months, we welcomed three new staff members to the OEOP team. In last month's newsletter, we welcomed Ryan Rucker as the program coordinator for the STEM Program. 
This month, we are excited to welcome Tiffany Decker, manager of operations and evaluation, and Mareshia Donald, program coordinator for SEED Academy.
Jeanette Plascencia, who served as program coordinator for the CORE program his summer, has transitioned to a new role as our coordinator of strategic projects.

Give to OEOP
Without the generous support of friends of the office like you, we wouldn't be able to offer our programs free of charge to our incredible students. 

Dear friends,   

This month, we wrapped an exciting and successful summer of programming with the conclusion of Engineering Experience at MIT (E2@MIT), our one-week project course for rising high school seniors from across the country, and the Confronting Obstacles and Realizing Excellence (CORE) program, our two-week program that focuses on improving the math skills and confidence of local 8th, 9th and 10th graders. Meanwhile, MIT Online Science, Technology and Engineering Community (MOSTEC) continues online through January. I'm happy to share stories from these three amazing programs below.

For those students who participated in our programs for local middle school students -- the STEM Program and the MIT Science of Baseball Program (MSBP) -- we hope to see you back on campus soon! Our Middle School Mentoring Program begins on September 28, and application information is currently online.

We are also thrilled to welcome back our Saturday Engineering Enrichment and Discovery (SEED) Academy students. Returning students begin on September 14, and a new cohort of freshmen and some additional sophomores will join us in February after a soon-to-launch application period.

Our staff is looking forward to reflecting on this summer's programs while we continue to serve students through the academic year. Please feel free to reach out to us if you would like to share any thoughts on how we can improve our programming moving forward.

Shawna Young
Executive Director
Office of Engineering Outreach Programs
Massachusetts Institute of Technology


Team of E2@MIT students builds and tests underwater robots
E2@MIT student Nadia Ferrer explains her team's underwater robotics project, which they designed to prevent a simulated oil spill from spreading.
In one week this summer, 13 students studying underwater robotics in the Engineering Experience at MIT (E2@MIT) program designed and constructed remote-operated vehicles (ROVs). On August 9, they headed to MIT's Zesiger Center swimming pool to test their projects. 

E2@MIT staff, in collaboration with the MIT Sea Grant Program, offered Underwater Robotics as one of its six courses for the first time this year. The other courses were Architecture, Electronics, Aeronautics and Astronautics, Engineering Design, and Fluid Mechanics. In each course, students learned problem-solving methods in engineering and completed an assignment with a design-related task, practicing turning ideas into completed projects. Outside of coursework, students interacted with admissions and financial aid officers, visited labs, and conversed with MIT faculty and students. 

The Underwater Robotics students faced a challenging assignment inspired by a real-world challenge: to create a prototype ROV for British Petroleum. The ROV had to be capable of inspecting the pipes that deliver materials from the seafloor and containing and cleaning oil spills. The group was divided into three teams, each assigned one of three specific tasks: pipe inspection and monitoring, oil containment, and clean up and monitoring.

Start-up co-founder shares experiences in entrepreneurship with MOSTEC students

Via live webinar, David Young explains to MOSTEC students how his start-up, Bounce Imaging, will produce low-cost, complex imaging technology for soldiers and first responders.

Around 90 students in the MIT Online Science, Technology and Engineering Community (MOSTEC) participated in an interactive webinar with David Young, co-founder and chief commercial officer of Bounce Imaging, on Wednesday, July 17. In the hour-long session, Young shared his experiences developing a product named as one of the best inventions of 2012 by Time Magazine and the challenges and rewards involved in launching a start-up.

The webinar was part of a weekly series hosted by MOSTEC, an online education and enrichment program for top high school seniors from across the country. From July to August, the students complete online coursework and projects in science, engineering and technical writing, which culminates in a five-day conference on MIT campus. From September to January, the students interact with MIT faculty and staff and receive online mentorship from industry professionals.

During the webinar, Young said the idea behind Bounce Imaging was born in the wake of the earthquake that hit Haiti in 2010. Francisco Aguilar, the company's other co-founder, observed that local search and rescue teams faced difficulties without access to the kind of complex imaging technologies possessed by better-funded international groups.

Researchers from Dana-Farber Cancer Institute connect math lessons from CORE program with cancer research

Students and staff of the 2013 CORE program gather in front of MIT. 
On Tuesday, August 13, researchers from the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute spoke to 19 middle and high school students of the Confronting Obstacles and Realizing Excellence (CORE) program about the deep connections between classroom math concepts and modern cancer research methodologies. During the hour-long talk, titled "How Math Can Inform Cancer Research," Philipp Altrock and Jessica Daniels of Dana-Farber's Department of Biostatistics and Computational Biology challenged students to reflect on the application of math in a number of real-world settings.

The CORE program, launched in 2008, is a two-week program for rising eighth, ninth and tenth graders who attend public school in Boston and Cambridge. The goal of the program is to boost students' quantitative reasoning skills before they return to school in the fall. After assigning students to algebra or geometry classes based on a diagnostic exam, the CORE program staff instruct students through a combination of Khan Academy - an educational website that allows instructors to set individual goals and quantify progress and needs for each student - and interactive lectures.

The researchers began the event by emphasizing the importance of math concepts that students might find arbitrary today. "When I was your age," Daniels said, "I didn't really think of math as important. Now, looking back, I'd probably pay a lot more attention."