We in the MEITE program were very excited to begin the fall semester with a hi-flex orientation at the Carolina Center for Educational Excellence, which allowed students to join in-person and virtually. At the orientation, MEITE students learned about the program, the curriculum, and met other students in the cohort. We enjoyed a break outside in the Carolina sun while upholding UNC’s community standards. It was a great way to begin the MEITE semester.
Throughout the semester, students worked on innovative ideas and products. For example, MEITE student Ebenezer Lancerio has been developing a program called the “Wake Up! Student Empowerment” Club, or Wake Up! for short. Operating in the greater Charlotte area, Wake Up! develops relationships between high school students in diverse schools through a student-led summit to raise awareness of issues connected to social justice. With this idea, Ebenezer pitched Wake Up! to two organizations: Launch Chapel Hill and Cadwalader law firm. So far, Wake Up! has been accepted by Cadwalader to help establish a 501(c)3 for the program, and Ebenezer is still awaiting news from Launch Chapel Hill.
In addition, this year’s Khayrallah Fellows are Savannah Windham, Marvin Espinoza, Erika Murray, and Devon Young. Together, they are continuing to develop a centralized website that consolidates digital resources to support teachers when implementing technology standards in their classroom. When complete, this website will feature curricular resources, classroom tools, and best practices for integrating technology standards into classroom instruction. Like Wake Up!, this idea was pitched to the 1789 Lab for funding, and the students are awaiting a final decision. Congratulations to both Ebenezer and the Khayrallah Fellows for their success!
In November, we also hosted our second networking night in MEITE’s history. In this event, current MEITE students, alumni, faculty, staff, and industry professionals gathered to connect with one another and learn about their experiences. The event was held over Zoom, and the students rotated between breakout rooms to interact with the guests. For the interactions, the MEITE students described an area of interest in order to receive feedback and ideate about their thinking. In all, each student had the opportunity to interact with four guests, and we received very positive feedback from our students and guests. Thank you to all who participated!
To close, we would like to highlight the internships our students are completing this year! Over the summer, the MEITE director and advisor worked to identify top internship sites for our students, and it has paid off. We currently have students interning in the following businesses and organizations: Research Triangle Institute, MetaMetrics, Research Triangle Literacy Council, Vital Voices, Emotionary, North Carolina Association of Public Charter Schools, Code the Dream, Carolina Union, Teach for America – Charlotte-Piedmont, UNC Wilmington, Centervention, Young Founders Institute, Center for Racial Equity in Education, NC IDEA, and Colors of Yoga. High-quality internship opportunities help prepare MEITE students for successful careers in educational innovation, and we are extremely appreciative of all our partners and internship supervisors.