University Students inspire a younger generation to get curious about technology, science, and engineering.
Eureka means a cry of joy or satisfaction when one finds or discovers something. For too many years, the sciences have been the uncool subjects in school and are generally dominated by males. Eureka is a student run non-profit that has been working hard for 20 years to change these stereotypes and share the ‘eureka’ moment with kids. Education is the bedrock of a flourishing community and this program introduces the magic of technology, science and engineering back into the lives of our communities’ most curious.
“It was really cool having one of the campers have the same enthusiasm as I did when I wrote the curriculum. It was pretty rewarding.”
Eureka works hard at broadening our kids’ educational outlook towards science by making it fun and accessible to them, not just a subject they have to learn in school. It started nearly 20 years ago, in the summer of 1995 and has been run out of Thompson River University ever since. Eureka started with a bare bones staff of six and only four weeks of camp for 90 participants. Last summer, the camp ran for eight weeks, with 15 staff members and 864 camp participants. Also last year, Eureka delivered 253 workshops in Kamloops and the surrounding area’s elementary schools. The program has reached nearly 6,000 kids and over the last few years they have conducted travel camps to reach the harder to get to communities.
Eureka accommodates as many students as they can, but they realize that even though their programming is reasonably priced, not everybody can afford to go to camp. They wanted to make it accessible to everyone, so our Thompson Okanagan Community Board donated $5,000 toward their bursary and outreach program – allowing the program to grant 68 bursaries to kids who couldn’t otherwise afford the camp and giving Eureka the ability to reach smaller communities. We believe all children should have access to this educational and inspiring program, regardless of means or location.
“We built mouse robots, we took little laser computer mice and took them apart and used the circuit board to make motors and we just let our mice run around on the ground like real mice. We’ve done dissections – something they all enjoy.”
Emma Garson the Program Coordinator at Eureka, who attended the classes when she was a child, shared a story about an autistic boy who joined the technology camp last year. She was impressed by how he blossomed in the first week of camp and how by the last week he wasn’t dependent on an instructor.
By making education fun, accessible and interesting, our children take on the knowledge they need to succeed. We are proud supporters of this wonderful initiative. Eurekais connecting theory with exciting activities and changing the way our kids interact with science. The future of technology, science and engineering looks bright in the hands of Eureka.