This week, the Baltimore Sun featured 2018 OSI Community Fellow Brittany Young and her project, B-360, which uses Baltimore’s dirt bike culture as a way to introduce young people to educational and career opportunities in STEM fields. Young, who is an elementary school technology instructor and a former chemical engineer, also hopes to change the perceptions of dirt bike riding, which has been illegal in Baltimore since 2000.
“People think that an engineer looks a certain way, and then people think a dirt bike rider is a certain type of person,” Young told the Sun. “I work with kids who want to be both. …How do we change the narrative around who they want to be, and where they want to go?”
Students in the program learn about the engineering design process, mechanics, robotics, coding, riding safety, and skills training. They create and 3D print model-sized dirt bikes and host events to ensure safety. With the OSI Fellowship, Young plans to hire more dirt bike riders as instructors, license her curriculum for sale to others, and hold public events to showcase safe riding and her students’ bike repair process.