BTE Student Stories

Engineering Day

Site Coordinator Destiny De La Rosa shares an update from the BTE Ewing, New Jersey site, which is currently in Year 2 of the BTE program.

Question 1: Highlight one activity from this quarter (Jan-March, 2023). What made this activity stand out?

During two consecutive workshops in February, BTE Ewing students had the opportunity to learn about the field of neuroscience and neurosurgery. In the first workshop, two first-year medical students at Cooper Medical School introduced 30 BTE students to common anatomy, terminology, and tools that are involved in brain surgery. Students were able to apply their knowledge during a scenario-based game in which they simulated being doctors tasked with identifying affected areas of the brain based on patient-reported symptoms. Students were also able to discuss the differences in specimen brains while looking at preserved examples brought in by the medical students. With this background knowledge, BTE students then took a field trip to The College of New Jersey (TCNJ) where they watched a neurosurgery recorded by a surgeon in real time. This activity exposed students to a medical career and gave them the opportunity to learn from those who are going through the educational process to pursue such a career.

Engineering Day

Students work together during Engineers Week

Question 2: What did your site do really well this quarter? Share an example of this practice in action.

BTE Ewing has been providing our students with a range of academically and socially enriching field trips. As our students progress through their junior year of high school, it is important that they begin to envision what their lives will look like following graduation. In addition to hosting the educational neurosurgery screening at TCNJ, BTE students have been able to engage with the college campus in other meaningful ways. On February 21st, BTE students participated in “Discover Engineers Week” with TCNJ’s Engineering department. Undergraduate students led a tour of the Engineering school for BTE students and demonstrated the viscoelastic properties of bones exposed to space radiation. A professor also engaged the students in a hands-on learning activity where students were tasked to design a bus shelter that could withstand weight and protect people.

BTE students also visited Rutgers University, where they toured the campus and visited the Johnson & Johnson museum. There, students heard from a historian and participated in a scavenger hunt to learn more about J&J’s history of creating products that help people.

As another component of BTE Ewing, students must complete at least one community service trip. In January, students collaborated with the SHARE Network Philadelphia to pack 240 boxes of nutritious food to be distributed to individuals over the age of 60.

Lastly, BTE Ewing students also took a trip to a bowling alley to relax and bond with each other after hard work during their finals season!

Service Day

Students pack boxes for community service activity with SHARE Network Philadelphia

Question 3: How do you think this quarter impacted your BTE students? How did they respond to and engage with content and activities?

BTE Ewing students showed lots of enthusiasm and engagement during the program, especially with the J&J volunteers. One of the volunteers shared, “I like inspiring the students to collaborate, giving back to the community, and starting to teach them real world skills that will follow them beyond high school.”

The students and coaches are currently working on a product development simulation project, where they work together in teams to design, market, and pitch a new product of their choosing. Throughout the brainstorming and working sessions, the students have been able to have thought-provoking conversations with each other and with the volunteers. Students have been really motivated and engaged throughout these sessions.


Want to learn more about BTE Ewing? Visit their site page!