Can you imagine powering a car with just a click?Some students from Kansas City not only imagined that…they made it real!
MindDrive’s mission is to inspire students to learn, expand their vision of the future, and to have a positive impact on urban workforce development. The program is funded through the national sponsorships of Bridgestone, Hertz Corporation, SONIC, America’s Drive-In, American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), VML, and KCP&L as well as through local foundations and individual contributors.
MindDrive serves 30 students from the urban core of Kansas City, currently working with 5 area schools; there are 21 students participating in Automotive Design Studio and 9 in Contemporary Communications. The students choose their course and also are given the freedom to align with the particular aspect of the project that gets them the most jazzed. Mentors play a huge role in finding what that spark is for each student, then figuring out a way to inspire them in that direction.
To raise awareness for experiential education programs, MindDrive students built an electric car that converts social media into social fuel for a road trip from Kansas City, Mo. to Washington D.C., where they hope to drive change in education. Any mention, comment or share will add 1.5 watts. Watching, for example, explanatory videos on YouTube, the user will indirectly generates 3 watts. These will feed the car through a system that “translates” online activity into force. Watch, like and share this video to help fuel their journey.
Moreover, MindDrive conducts an internet campaign asking Obama’s government to support similar initiatives. For each signature collected, 10 watts will be added. Until now, the project has collected nearly 220,000 “socially watts”, of which 42,500 had been consumed.
The next goal is to build a prototype based on the Ghia, which has a range of 48 km and a maximum speed of 72 km/hr. Despite the fact that commercial production will not start until October, the organization claims that it has already received pre-orders.