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Carl Hayden robotics team members attend White House Science Fair

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  • Craig Pletenik/Phoenix Union High School District

Robotics team members Quenan Ruiz, Martin Carranza and Diserae Sanders, and coach Fredi Lajvardi were guests of President Barack Obama and the White House Science Fair, May 27.

The President announced new steps as part of his Educate to Innovate campaign, to get more boys and girls engaged in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math). He is especially interested in getting more girls involved.

“We had to talk about ourselves, and that’s when they asked us, ‘Hey, how can we get girls in STEM,’” Sanders said.

She started in robotics competitions in middle school and continued at Carl Hayden as a freshman. She and her teammates just graduated and plan to study engineering in college.

One of the ways to encourage Hispanic Youth into STEM activities is through the airing of the documentary, Underwater Dreams, which chronicles the success of the Carl Hayden Robotics team, from its unlikely upset of MIT in an underwater robotics competition to its current status as a premiere program nationally.

According to the White House media release, NBC Universal’s Hispanic Enterprises and Content will launch a new nationwide campaign, Aprender es Triunfar, aimed at closing the Latino student achievement gap, especially in STEM education.

In support of reaching many Latino families with this inspirational message, AMC Theatres has committed to hosting 100 community screenings across the U.S. to enable school and non-profit groups to enjoy the film on the big screen this summer and fall.

In addition, this July, MSNBC, Telemundo and mun2 will simultaneously broadcast a 44-minute television version.