With a model of a roller coaster in tow, a team of Disney engineers have some magic in store this summer for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Florida Walt Disney World Clubhouse.
On a mission to make learning fun, mechanical engineer Lee Wilson has spent five years designing “cool experiments” that teach kids about real-life applications for science, math and technology. Wilson, with his colleagues, visits local schools and camps year-around to share knowledge and inspire students to become the innovators of tomorrow. Their lessons always include props that resemble rides and attractions from Disney Parks. Crowd pleasers include working replicas of an animatronic Tiki Bird, roller coaster and a hovercraft.
“It’s electric to see them getting excited about math and science,” says Wilson, who takes great delight in working with his team to win over young audiences.
Boys & Girls Club service director Jose Bastias believes the Walt Disney World engineers made an impression on the approximately 120 kids who participated in their presentation.
“It was an amazing sight,” said Bastias. “They all had their hands up because they had a million questions.”
For many children in the audience, it was also a glimpse at a world beyond what they know.
“A program like this opens their eyes to see different things,” said Bastias, who points out this introduction to engineering may inspire the kids to consider careers in math, science or technology.