In August 2013, Warsaw Community School Corporation first announced plans to create the new WCS S.T.E.M. Bus that would offer a state-of-the-art mobile lab to impact teacher professional learning and student learning and would provide a visual commitment to both the community and school system toward S.T.E.M. education (see related).
Today, just over a year later, the bus, now being called the W.I.L.L. (Warsaw Inquiry Learning Laboratory), was officially unveiled to the public with a ribbon cutting ceremony. Tours of the bus and detailed information on STEM curriculum were presented to the public after the ribbon cutting ceremony took place.
The lab, which began construction in January, was funded in part through a donation by OrthoWorx, which committed a total of $300,000 toward the school corporation’s “Moving STEM Forward” plan, and through the school corporation, which provided approximately $182,000 of its own funds toward the plan.
Warsaw Community School Corporation Superintendent Dr. David Hoffert took a moment during the ceremony to thank those who played a part in the creation of the bus and its curriculum including John Ryan and Sheryl Cook of the WCS Transportation Department; WCS board members for their support of the project; Nicki Baird, WCS instructional coach; Network Solutions of Granger for their work on the wiring of the bus; Esco of Fort Wayne for the installation of technology; Ethos Science Center in Elkhart for design and development of the bus; Turtle Top of New Paris for the structural work on the bus; and OrthoWorx for funding of the project.
Those in attendance at today’s ribbon cutting included representatives from OrthoWorx, ESCO Communications, Turtle Top, Network Solutions, INC., WCHS graphic design students, educators, administrators and faculty members of the WCS STEM design team and transportation team, in addition to students from each WCS elementary school.