BOSS: Beating Odds Studying Stem
What Is BOSS?
BOSS is a technology program designed for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Delaware. In today’s world, the number of jobs in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) fields is growing quickly. We lack an appropriately skilled workforce to fill these positions. In response to the opportunities created by the technology industry, and the barriers that have prevented youth from lower socioeconomic backgrounds from entering STEM fields, the MCLF created the BOSS program.There are two exciting components of the program. The first component introduces children to various types of technology, including robotics, programming, digital animation and 3D printing. The second component is the “Entrepreneurs in Training” sessions that allow kids to enlist critical thinking skills to identify solutions to real world problems. BOSS program participants receive coaching in key skills, such as giving and receiving feedback, presenting, public speaking and mindfulness. Kids utilize their understanding of these introduced concepts to illustrate their own business ideas, develop products and present them to a panel of experts in the STEM field. The panel gives feedback to the youth about their presentations and helps them further develop their ideas.
Who Teaches the BOSS Program?
All BOSS sessions are taught by volunteers with education or careers in STEM or business fields. These volunteers include local entrepreneurs, technology experts and college students from the University of Delaware and Delaware State University. These volunteers are all committed to helping each child in the BOSS program learn new technologies and entrepreneurial concepts.
The “Digital Divide”
The “Digital Divide” refers to the growing number of people in our society who lack access to technology. For children, this lack of access means they cannot develop the basic computer literacy skills necessary to be competitive in today’s job market. The MCLF is committed to bridging the “Digital Divide” by providing kids with access to state-of-the-art technology. Whether they are learning to download an app to an iPad, or researching a report using the internet, the MCLF believes that giving our community’s youth access to technology is important.By providing access to technology, the MCLF hopes to help youth build the computer literacy skills necessary to succeed in school and life.