While being part of Tinkerall, software engineer Lucia Cheung and I started mentoring at the "Clubhouse Corners” (Rincones Clubhouse, in Spanish), part of Computer Clubhouse Network and a project between the Media Lab, the Museum of Science in Boston, and the Panamanian National Secretariat of Science, Tehcnology, and Innovation (SENACYT). The Clubhouse provides these students an environment of hands-on learning, where they can develop their interests and skills through mentorship and technological resources.

For almost a year, with guest mentors coming back and forth, Lucia and I have been working on several projects and events to increase students’ interests and engagement through art, technology, and collaboration. Our projects have touched several disciplines, such as, Architecture and 3D Modeling, Art, Electronics, Graphic and Web Design, Photography, Programming, and Video Editing.

For the Teen Summit this year, we gathered students to work on an illustrated calendar to help gather funds for our chosen Clubhouse representative, Jairo.

For the RoboCUP 2018, the national robotics competition held by SENACYT every year, we designed and built a Scratch and Arduino-operated pinball machine that was the idea of one of the Clubhouse’s most active members, Ruben.

During this experience, I have learned profoundly from these students’ enthusiasm and imagination. It has been fulfilling to watch them grow in their interests and abilities, and I hope to continue being involved. To see more of our projects, visit our blog: www.clubhousepanama.tech and follow us in Instagram @riconclubhousesp