MINDDRIVE FACT SHEET
MINDDRIVE is a non-profit, after school program for at-risk high school students that utilizes experiential learning methods administered by instructors and mentors. Current classes include Automotive Design Studio and Contemporary Communications.
To inspire students to learn, expand their vision of the future and have a positive influence on urban, workforce development.
LONG RANGE GOAL
The long-range goal is to expand this program to other urban cities reaching more and more at-risk high-school students.
TEACHERS/MENTORS AND METHODS
The classes are taught by two teachers, 14 mentors and one social scientist that provides daily interface with parents, schools and students works with them on immediate social or academic issues.
Our students engage in current, environmentally critical projects. They apply practical science, math, and state-of-the-art technology to design and fabricate important solutions, such as the construction of an electric car. Our goal is to keep a one-mentor-per-student ratio. Our mentors provide the students with a direct association to real world and their practical skills. Mentors serve to expand the student’s vision of their future by acting as role models as well as by teaching and helping them grasp scientific concepts.
There are two semesters per year and classes meet on Saturday mornings and Wednesday evenings to allow for the critical student/mentor involvement.
WHO IS SERVED
MINDDRIVE serves primarily at-risk high school students from the urban core of Kansas City. The current student population of MINDRIVE is 63% African American, 31% Hispanic and 6% Caucasian. These students come to MINDDRIVE from DeLaSalle Charter School, The University Academy Charter School, Alta Vista Charter School, Lincoln Prep Academy and Kearny High School.
The Automotive Design Studio class produced an ultra-efficient, light-weight, transparent, electric vehicle that achieved 300 MPGe at 45 miles per hour and 450 MPGe at 25 miles per hour, which was so astonishing that the press release about it swept the world, engaging in over 300 web links in 3 days after the news was released.
The Contemporary Communications class documents the work of the automotive class and has helped develop the website, post blogs, engage in social media and assists in research for our general press related stories.
Our graduates have all experienced elevated visions of their futures and the four graduates from the most immediate past class have all gone on to continued education and training or full-time employment in their dream field.
The automotive class is currently designing an electric vehicle that is intended to accomplish 600 MPGe at a steady 60 miles per hour and will be driven from San Diego, CA to Jacksonville, FL in March 2012, a trip of 2,400 miles. (Or we could end in Washington D.C. as our Missouri Congressman has suggested). This trip is slated to begin and end in March of 2012; a non-stop run, proving with our diligent analytics that with the utilization of quick-charge technology, supported by the national grid the electric car can become viewed as more than just an urban vehicle.
The communication class has several culminating projects including the development of a book with photographs, interviews, student and mentor bios, facts about the history of the Indy car chassis, and the progress of the design and fabrication of the 2011/2012 electric vehicle. Also, these students will work with a documentary production team to film the entire cross-country trip, including press stops, mobile classrooms, successes and possible failures that occur along the way.
The story will be “live” on our blog and through social media interaction. We will aspire to many stops along the way allowing for our students to interact with students of other high schools and universities, telling their story and allowing for collaboration and sponsored events.
The cars are recycled 2000-vintage Lola and Reynard Champ Cars whose tub and suspensions were adapted to support a full body and electrical propulsion system. The electrical components are lithium-ion batteries that total 72 and 96 volts. The first car had a 9” DC motor driving through a chain and sprocket system. The second car has a hub-drive that will increase the MPGE from 450 to 600. The cars each weigh approximately 1,000 pounds.
Corporate sponsorships, private donors and foundations fund the MINDDRIVE organization’s programs.
Steve Rees, 816-377-0176 – Automotive Design Instructor, retired architect and racecar driver email@example.com
Linda Buchner 816-916-4111 – Contemporary Communications Mentor, marketing and PR, firstname.lastname@example.org
Tom Strongman, 816-520-8212 – Contemporary Communications Mentor, automotive journalist and photographer, email@example.com