ROCHESTER, N.Y. -- Many students on summer break are enjoying the sun.
Students at University Preparatory Charter School for Young Men in Rochester are too, but it’s for a different reason: the Solar Car Project.
“It’s a STEM-based project where students can apply the actual math and science to something physical," said Solar Car Project director Gregory Rice. "So now we get to do math and then we can drive the math.”
In just two weeks students learned about solar power and constructed cars the size of go-karts that run on it.
For one student, it’s a dream come true.
“All my mom got me for my birthday was cars, toy cars," said Davyeone Whitcomb of Rochester. "And I used to drive them around and stuff, and then now, I’m 12-years-old, and I get to build one.”
The program director says he hopes the current generation of students will help bring a seemingly abstract idea into the mainstream.
“I really want to make this sustainable so that you can drive a solar car, I can drive a solar car, because I truly believe we can do this now," Rice said. "Because all the components on this car right now, bought them off the shelf. So almost anybody can do this if they’ve got the drive to do it.”
At least one student says he has the drive to pursue this as a career one day.
“When I get older, I can take the cars from today, and then put all of this stuff inside it, and so it will be different," Whitcomb said.
And the program director has some advice in pursuing that career.
“Start your own car company, become a multi-millionaire, that’s my goal, and the only thing you have to do is give me a car after you build them," Rice said.
It’s proof that perhaps even more powerful than the sun is the human brain, especially if you let it shine.