Loading
Search
NEWS STORIES

Milwaukee Public Schools reps visit Northwoods fab labsSubmitted: 02/02/2017
Lane Kimble
Lane Kimble
News Director
lkimble@wjfw.com

Milwaukee Public Schools reps visit Northwoods fab labs
EAGLE RIVER - Sparks flew in front of Valencia Carthen's eyes, sparking inspiration to take back home.

"The first thing you learn as a brand new teacher is steal, steal, steal the best ideas," Carthen said.

The Milwaukee Washington High School principal was getting ready to unpack her school district's first fab lab equipment Friday. Thursday, she and 12 other Milwaukee Public Schools members checked out several Northwoods labs with 3D printers, laser engravers, and routers.

"I had a small idea, which I thought was a big idea, but just going on this tour... The sky's the limit for these kids," Carthen said.


The tour through Northland Pines, Three Lakes, and Florence happened after a conversation between State Representative Mary Felzkowski (R-Irma) and MPS Superintendent Dr. Darienne Driver. The two agreed small and big districts need to work together.

"A lot of times people think the rural schools just won't have access to different resources, but they've shown us what they can do with what they have," Dr. Driver said. "So, now my folks are going back and we're all thinking like, OK, we can do this."

State Representatives Rob Swearingen (R-Rhinelander), Jeff Mursau (R-Crivitz), and Felzkowski made a point of visiting Three Lakes. In 2014, it became the first K-12 district in the state to get a fab lab.

"This is where future education is heading," Three Lakes senior Jack Connelly said.

Connelly and his team showed off their creation to lawmakers and school representatives. They also explained their goal of forming a business.

"I have no doubt in my mind that any student is capable of replicating what we've done here," Connelly said. "The reason I know that is because I didn't think I could do this six months ago."

Since Three Lakes' successful launch two and a half years ago, about 150 school districts statewide have built or signed on to build fab labs. 

"We're can-do people," Felzkowski said of the Northwoods' leadership in starting fab labs.  "And maybe that's because we've had to be. We don't have everything at our fingertips. The challenge was put out there and we've risen to the challenge."

It's thanks largely to a 2015 law that offered districts $25,000 matching grants through the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation to buy equipment.

"It's not only going to help northern Wisconsin, but it's going to move education forward as a state," Rep. Felzkowski said. "So that a kid in Northland Pines, a kid in downtown Milwaukee, a kid in Brookfield all have the same opportunities and the same ability to learn and have that successful life."

Learning from the labs takes a strong curriculum, which is something Northland Pines is just working out in its first year with a lab.

"If we can come up with some good ideas from Milwaukee Public Schools, if they can come up with good ideas from us, it's definitely a success story," Pines Administrator Dr. Mike Richie said.

Valencia Carthen knows her district will face the same challenge, but one Milwaukee is ready to face thanks to some new ideas shared from the Northwoods.

"Sometimes the best ideas are in the rural areas, sometimes the best ideas are in the urban areas, but you have to learn how to share," Carthen said.

State Representatives Dale Kooyenga (R-Brookfield) and Michael Schraa (R-Oshkosh) also joined the tour.


Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS

Play Video

MOSINEE - Rib Mountain's Russell Vanskike is an American Red Cross volunteer who flew out of Mosinee Thursday morning to assist Hurricane Michael relief efforts.

"We start people up on the road back to trying to get a normal life again," said Vanskike.

Vanskike has helped eight disaster areas recover within the last three years.

"Last year, I went to Hurricane Harvey," said Vanskike. "The year before I was in the Carolinas with hurricane Matthew."

Vanskike will be serving meals to people who are just returning home after the Category 4 hurricane. 

+ Read More

Play Video

FLORENCE - The Florence Bobcats had a disappointing 2017 season.

"We had three games cancelled last year. We didn't want to go through that again," said Head Coach Kent Walstrom. 

But in the 2018 season, the Bobcats have a near perfect record and clinched a playoff spot.
 
"It was amazing, best feeling ever. Especially after last year, having to forfeit half our season, it was pretty cool," said junior Tobiahas Wheeler.

+ Read More

HURLEY - An Arbor Vitae man will face 14 extra felony charges related to the Iron County murder of Wayne Valliere, Jr. last winter.

Evan Oungst, 28, is one of five men charged with homicide in the killing.

The state Department of Justice filed nine additional counts of harboring or aiding a felon and five counts of giving out illegal drugs.

Oungst also faces a count of harboring or aiding a felon in Vilas County.

The information attached to the new Iron County charges matches previous information in the case. Assistant Attorneys General Richard Dufour and Chad Verbeten are handling the case and decided on the additional charges.

+ Read More

Play Video

NORTHWOODS - Another winter approaches without a wolf hunt in Wisconsin. 

Last month Congressman Sean Duffy proposed removing wolves from the federal endangered species list. That legislation got support from both parties. 

Duffy grew up in northern Wisconsin. He wants to give the management of endangered species to the states instead of the federal government.

+ Read More

Play Video

TOWN OF ENTERPRISE - A simple contraption made from wood and holding batteries and cameras ended up in Jason Manders' hands Thursday morning after a long flight.

"I've never held anything that's been in space, so this is pretty cool," Manders said.

Getting that contraption back from high above the earth was much more complicated.

"I didn't really know what I was going to get into," Manders admitted.

+ Read More

Play Video

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Most of the veterans on the 34th Never Forgotten Honor Flight served in Vietnam. But one veteran joined the service decades before they did.

"I wanted to do this before I became 100 years old," said Chester Lynn, who lives in Phelps. 

Lynn got his wish and joined the Honor Flight at 95 years old.

"It means a lot," said Lynn. "It shows that the people do care." 

Lynn was the only WWII veteran on the trip.

"I was 18 years old when I joined the service," said Lynn. "That was back in 1942." 
 
He served in one of the Army's Cavalry units.

"Very fortunately we did not have the horses," said Lynn. "They mechanized us, and it was quite an experience." 

Lynn got to share some of that experience with younger veterans on the trip.

"The same way as when I teach younger kids about Vietnam, I'm learning from him," said Larry Akerberg, who served in the Army during Vietnam. 
 
Akerberg felt lucky to share a guardian with Lynn.

"Made me feel proud to be with somebody like him," said Akerberg.

Lynn was just glad to see Vietnam veterans getting the recognition they didn't have when their service ended. 

"This trip showed me that they are honored," said Lynn. 

The program also gave him a chance to see the monument that recognizes his service.

"I've seen pictures of it, but this is quite something," said Lynn. 

Quite something, to memorialize one of the greatest journeys in Lynn's long life. 

"Now, I'm just kind of taking it easy," said Lynn.

+ Read More

Play Video

MERRILL - Sixteen Wisconsin counties will ask voters in November whether they support legalizing marijuana.

Democratic Attorney General candidate Josh Kaul visited one of those counties, Lincoln County, on Thursday.

In Merrill, he said he supports allowing doctors to prescribe marijuana in the state.

"There are people who deal with chronic pain, who can benefit from having medical marijuana, and I think they should have that option," Kaul said. "If there are doctors who could prescribe either medical marijuana to people or opioids to address pain, I'd rather see doctors prescribing medical marijuana."

+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: 





Click Here