The Digital Bus Program

Given the recent wildfire tragedy, and the many displaced families, the Maui Digital Bus has made changes to its program. While many regular school programs are on hold, the Digital Bus is directing all its efforts to the West Side students. Managed by Maui Economic Development Board (MEDB), the Digital Bus’s science, technology, and culturally-based K-12 program serves as one of MEDB’s educational outreaches to expand the next generation of leaders and scientists capable of developing and supporting critical technologies for the future of our island home. The mobile lab is a proven method of extending learning into a field setting.

The Digital Bus provides students with science-based outdoor experiences from which they can directly learn and observe their own community’s resiliency and ecosystems. More importantly, students gain a deeper understanding of their rich cultural history, which includes the wisdom of ancient Hawaiians as environmental stewards.

Dav Yuan, Digital Bus Program Manager, explained the current circumstances. “I have redirected all of the Digital Bus resources from regular programming to focus on any of the displaced students, any of the keiki who lost their homes, or do not have any school left to attend. I am currently partnering with organizations at community pop-ups located at various West Side beach hubs.”

“The children are missing school. They want to learn. They are excited and happy to have a mobile classroom and the comfort of being in an organized space offering fun and interesting things to learn about. We provide observation tools such as binoculars and microscopes, and the students are able to go out and find items to observe. They are learning how magnification can help with observation, and how Hawaiian cultural components are interwoven into science.” 

Yuan added, “For the near future, the Digital Bus, with its projects and curriculum, plans to allocate almost all of its resources to maintaining a presence at the West Side schools. Therefore, when we are able to transition away from the smaller pop-ups, and the students are back in regular school settings, we will still be available for teachers to schedule Digital Bus sessions for their students.”

The Digital Bus is reaching out to organizations and families who want to schedule pop-up visits. For more information, visit our website at ─ Instagram is @mauidigitalbus. Dav Yuan, Digital Bus Program Manager

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