E-Power Bike Workshop – April 3-7, 2023
During the spring break for Carson City School District, three teams from Carson Middle School and Eagle Valley Middle School participated in the E-Power Workshop. Girls, nonbinary and genderqueer students became Energy Bike Ambassadors by building energy-generating bikes from scratch while learning about the various components, wiring methods and all the tools involved. Envirolution held this STEAM workshop at Eagle Valley Middle School with the help of Enel, Tesla and AAUW. Participants worked in groups alongside staff and local career professionals while they learned about the engineering design process, understanding of basic circuitry / electronics, working in a team, problem-solving skills and leadership.
By first showing what the energy bike is capable of and how it relates to real-world electrical grids, students began to develop an awareness of energy conservation, energy transformation, and the advantages of energy efficiency through a tactile experience. Days one through three of the workshop consisted of building the E-Bike and expanding upon the knowledge of the following topics: Simple Circuits, E-Bike Components, Wiring and the engineering design process. Day three was also an offsite workshop where participants engaged with real-world engineers at Tesla Motors, got a behind-the-scenes tour, and participated in building a simple electric motor. Day four consisted of the final E-Bike build and presentation preparation. Day five incorporated troubleshooting, best practices, and final presentation preparation. The afternoon of day five was the E-Power Workshop Celebration for family and sponsors, where the students led presentations of the Energy Bike that they had prepared. Throughout the week, the participants engaged in confidence, wellness, team building, and professional development activities while working together to build their own fully functioning Energy Bike that they can use to generate 300 watts of electricity!
“The workshop gave me an idea that I can work in any field like men…
I can have a career in mechanical engineering!”
⏤ Yocelynn, E-Power Workshop Participant – 2023
By engaging with women industry professionals, we helped to solidify the very real possibility for the students that they, too, can pursue a career in the energy and engineering fields. Enel’s Limited Edition of Everyday Superheroes: Women in renewable energy careers book by Erin Twamley and Joshua Sneidman was used throughout the week to highlight career opportunities while Enel employees joined the students, providing opportunities for engagement and mentorship.
Each participant is now an E-Power Ambassador and will be able to teach engaging energy lessons at their schools and within their communities. Two energy bikes are now the property of Carson Valley Middle School and Eagle Valley Middle School. They are free for them to utilize for lessons and activities throughout the school year and Envirolution will provide ongoing support. Students experienced a 30% increase in content knowledge and had some really great things to say:
“I loved working on the bike and hearing the guest speakers’ life stories.
I also loved working in a team and meeting new people and new friends!”
⏤ Atheena, E-Power Workshop Participant – 2023
“I want to be an Engineer or I want to be in NASA so
I think this helped me a lot trying to get to those dreams.”
⏤ Chloe, E-Power Workshop Participant – 2023