ABOUT SPOKES 2020
Spokes is an MIT-based, non-profit, student-run initiative as part of an effort to rethink STEM education.
This summer, Spokes America is sending a team of 8 MIT students on a cross-country bike ride starting on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. and ending at the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco. Over the course of 80 days, our team will bike over 3,500 miles and host Learning Festivals in small towns along the route.
WHO WE ARE
We are a team of 7 students comprised of one freshmen, two sophomores, two juniors, and two seniors from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, MA. We all came to MIT to pursue our passions in math, science, and humanities, but more importantly, we believe in sharing our knowledge with others to inspire future generations. Check out our biographies below to learn more about each one of us!
WHAT WE DO
We create curriculums that complement each school's curriculum inspired by MIT's hands-on approach to education. We teach these workshops to schools, libraries, and summer camps all across the United States. We establish strong connections with communities, students, and host families along the way. We document our experiences. We sweat (a lot). We become a family.
Oh yeah...and we bike the whole 3,500 miles.
We want to show that yes, engineers and scientists can be athletic too. We're breaking stereotypes. We're also stepping out of our comfort zones, physically and mentally. And...how many people can say they've biked across the United States of America?
WE NEED YOUR HELP.
We'd love to do what we do for free, but with a trip this big, we need the support of dedicated individuals like yourself. We're looking to crowdsource $15,000 to make this trip happen, on top of large corporate sponsorships. If you are a cycling advocate or enthusiast, please consider supporting our journey. If you connect with our mission and want to help us reach out to kids across America, please consider supporting us.
MEET THE TEAM
MIT ‘20 | Materials Science and Engineering with Business
I’m Anthony Cheng, a senior at MIT. I'm originally from the Salt Lake City metropolitan area. I’m passionate about the environment and sustainability, particularly in electric power systems and energy storage (double minoring in Energy Studies and Computer Science). Two things I’m proud of doing at MIT are my involvement in StartLabs and MacGregor House, both of which I was president of at some point. I also enjoy biking (surprise!), arranging and performing a cappella music, reading, cooking, and teaching 3.091, one of MIT’s introductory chemistry classes. So excited to go on this journey with my awesome teammates!
MIT ‘23 | Physics or Nuclear Science
Hi! My name is Charlotte and I’m a freshman planning on studying Physics or Nuclear Science and Engineering. I’ve lived all over the US, but most recently I went to high school in Las Vegas, Nevada. At MIT, I play flute in the MIT Wind Ensemble and Symphony Orchestra and I’m working on a really cool research project simulating thermal neutron scattering in the Nuclear Science and Engineering Department. In my free time, I enjoy listening to music, reading, knitting, crocheting, hiking, and of course biking. Biking 3,500 miles and teaching STEM at the same time is an absolute dream come true and I can’t wait!
MIT '20 | Computer Science, Economics and Data Science
Hey y’all! I’m Cindy Si, a senior at MIT majoring in Computer Science, Economics and Data Science (6-14) and minoring in Anthropology (21A). I grew up in toasty San Antonio, TX and I miss the breakfast tacos almost as much as I miss the readily available Vitamin D! I’m incredibly passionate about applying data science and technology to societal issues and the social impact sector. My life at MIT has revolved around two extracurriculars (that are near and dear to my heart): counselor for the FPOP, FLP and member of the MIT Women’s Basketball team. So during pre-orientation you can find me FLPing out in the woods and all other times you can find me on the courts. Instead of psetting, I love jamming to too loud music, reading too many books, cooking way too much food (and eating all of that food), and wandering around Boston. I can not wait to start the 3500 mile adventure of sharing our STEM knowledge and inspiring future generations!
MIT ‘22 | Computer Science and Brain and Cognitive Sciences
Hello! I’m Jack, and I’m a sophomore at MIT studying computer science and neuroscience. I grew up in New York City, and I’ve always loved building things. At MIT, I’m the director of HackMIT, where we help 1000 students build something every year during our weekend-long hackathon. I also work on natural language processing part-time at The New York Times. When I'm not at my computer, I'm probably reading a book, biking(!), or playing badminton. I’m super excited to work with everyone this summer and bike 3,500 miles across the U.S.!
MIT ’21 | Brain and Cognitive Sciences
Hey! My name is Joa. I’m a junior studying cognitive science with a minor in computer science. I’m from Nashville, TN. I love learning and trying new things. At MIT, I’ve helped run an fMRI experiment in a social cognition lab. I’ve been on the track team for the past three years competing in multis (heptathlon and decathlon). I also performed in the Musical Theatre Guild’s production of A Chorus Line in the Fall and am excited to do more shows. I also enjoy reading, juggling, climbing, and playing board games. I can’t wait to be teaching and biking across America!
MIT ’21 | Civil Engineering
Howdy folks! I’m Rayna Higuchi, a senior at MIT majoring in Civil Engineering (1C) with a passion for sustainability within structural engineering and cementitious materials. I’m originally from far-away San Diego and in perpetual mourning for the sunlight I’ve lost, but I enjoy my time here in Boston! I spend my days playing lacrosse and my nights shouting at board games with friends. Sometimes I even go to school.
I’m so excited to share the incredible fun of hands-on learning with young people, because everyone deserves to know how amazing STEM is! You know what they say—I would bike 1,750 miles and I would bike 1,750 more just to be the one who biked 3,500 miles to deliver a STEM kit to your door.
MIT ‘22 | Materials Science and Engineering
Hello! I’m Sophia and I come from sunny San Diego (not the city exactly, but the mountainous and desert-y part of San Diego). Basically, I couldn't contain my excitement when I heard about MIT Spokes, and I'm so glad I did! I love adventure and can't wait to spend this summer out in the open air and experiencing the full width of America that I’ve covered multiple times via airplane. At MIT, I love taking pottery classes, talking about material science, going hiking, and being involved in MIT’s Tech Catholic Community. I've always loved hands-on learning and can’t wait to share the joy of hands-on learning in STEM workshops this summer!