STEM Guitar Program Strikes a Sweet Note

We first told you about the EM Garrett Junior High School STEM Guitar Program HERE. The program was originally a college level course, originated by the late Mike Aikens, an engineering professor at Butler County Community College in Pennsylvania. Mr. Aikens discovered through his teaching, that “math and music are truly universal languages that span gender, age, socio-economics and race.” He developed a curriculum that could be adapted to senior and junior high schools. A former Boulder City High School teacher, Mr. Joshua Fisher, was the first instructor to teach the STEM Guitar class here locally. Along the way, the program has received community support from the members of the Boulder City Rotary Club to purchase materials. Mr. Larry Archuleta, a Rotary Club member and local businessman who owns Dam Computer Medic was an essential advisor to the program as well.

This year, the class was nearly derailed in its entirety. Long time instructor, Mr. Ben Franke, tragically passed away early in the school year, leaving the future of the program in doubt. Not to be deterred, Mr. Archuleta reached out, and with the assistance of Mrs. Linda Scott of the Boulder Community Club, they were able to support the students and keep the program moving forward.

Recently, several of the students from the class assembled at the The Tap to show off their nearly completed guitars to members of both Rotary Clubs here in Boulder City and other guests. Mr. Archuleta spent a few moments discussing the program and then happily presented each of the students with their own amplifiers, courtesy of the Community Club. The amplifiers were amazingly small, but packed a punch, as Mr. Archuleta demonstrated when he hooked one up to a guitar he built for the school. Additionally, Mr. Archuleta built a second guitar as part as a fundraising effort for the STEM Guitar project, which garnered a generous donation of $1000.

The students happily received their gifts and then had some famous Tap pizza that they enjoyed together. To help support this program going forward, you can contact the Rotary Club of Boulder City HERE. The current club president is Amy Vandermark.

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