Just because kids will soon be home from school for the summer, that doesn’t mean the gears stop turning. For students like Katie Ochoa, who spoke at a recent press conference held at South Providence Library, summer holds opportunities to learn everything from coding to sailing, thanks to FabNewport.
The event, led by youth ambassador emcee Mearah “MiMi” Smith, celebrated the after-school education organization’s 10-year anniversary, along with announcing the launch of their exciting next chapter here in Providence: FABx. Combining the forces of FabNewport with PVD Young Makers, FABx serves more than 700 middle and high school learners through a range of programming both in and outside of the classroom, emphasizing a learner-centered education.
“Using 3D printers, laser cutters, robotics, and other hands-on learning tools, our participants were not just making things,” said FABx co-founder and executive director Steve Heath at the press conference. “They were also making their lives. All we did was supply the opportunities to awaken the limitless possibilities that everyone should have. Yet ‘limitless’ is hard to fathom when there is inequity at every turn.”
Through PVD Young Makers programming happening this summer at the Community Libraries of Providence and the Providence Public Library, students turn their ideas into creations learning coding, design, and fabrication skills, along with growing their confidence. To further show the value of after-school and summer learning, FABx is hitting the road with their Positive Future Visions campaign, traveling the state collecting ideas on what defines successful and fulfilling futures for different people, and how access to the right resources and opportunities can turn those visions into reality.
“What we know is out-of-school time programs offer important learning opportunities for youth,” Heath continued. “Every Rhode Island young person deserves to participate in after school and summer learning.” FABx is free to families thanks to partnerships and community support. To learn more about programming, submit a Positive Future Vision, or donate, visit GoFABx.org
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