Turning a New Leaf in Engineering Design – Faith Vanderburg, Dream Designers

Hello, my name is Faith Vanderburg and I am a part of Design Dreamers for this Project Ventura. I never imagined that I would get such an opportunity to be in a challenging school, or even go into an Engineering Pathway. To start off, I come from a school with the majority of the students coming from Mexico or having some type of Hispanic descent. Every day I went to school we said the pledges in English and Spanish – it wasn’t until years later that I knew that I was speaking a different language, let along Spanish, because it was so natural – and then went on to learn with our limited resources, patient teachers and inattentive students. I did very well in school; getting good grades and absorbing knowledge. I loved math right away and still do.

The multiple math operations that I enjoyed doing

You may think that I was instantly attracted to the Engineering Pathway, but it was the last Pathway I wanted to join. I was more interested in the Media Tech Pathway, for the creative freedom and the Biomedical Pathway, for the dissections. Mrs. Lakshamanan, the teacher who teaches the first year of the Engineering Pathway, eventually won in reeling me into Introduction to Engineering and Design, and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed engineering since.

Example of the cubes we used in Introduction to Engineering and Design as models for our Puzzle Cube Project

Being in Principles of Engineering is not about making things look pretty but making gadgets work. This is demonstrated through Project Ventura, because we are going through all the steps to transform an Airstream into a useable teacher space. We have to get information about what the teachers want through surveys, design a floor plan, pick a winning design and then work to push out the final product as a class.
I am very excited about making something for the teachers to use and seeing how often they will use their work space, but I am worried about working as a class to convert the Airstream. I am very glad to work with Gaby Ponce and Julie Tapia on this project, they have good work ethics and I know that they can help me stay on task, plus they are awesome people already.


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