For the past four weeks, on Tuesday afternoons from 4-5pm, you’d find 10 Westar employees at the Downtown Office working with their Littles on a big project and presentation; the culmination of the two year Corporate Bigs curriculum. Each Little in the Westar Corporate Bigs program was gifted a book, “ What Color is my World? The Lost History of African-American Inventors” written by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and with the help of their Big, were asked to read and choose an inventor to research. After researching an inventor from the book or one of their choosing, the Bigs and Littles worked together to develop a research paper and created a power point presentation to present their findings. This isn’t the first time these matches have worked together on a project. The Corporate Bigs program is an initiative between Westar Energy, Kansas Big Brothers Big Sisters serving Shawnee County, and Williams Science and Fine Arts Magnet School and FEATS. Students in the program visit Westar Energy every Tuesday where they have learned basic concepts of STEM. This program, in its second year, was designed to pique the interest of students in the STEM disciplines, collaborate with the educators of the FEATS afterschool program at Williams Science and Fine Arts Magnet Elementary School, introduce students to a corporate environment, and lastly provide the 10 children involved with a oneto-one adult mentor through Kansas Big Brothers Big Sisters.
Cat Riggs, a Match Support Specialist for Kansas Big Brothers Big Sisters shares, “It’s exciting to see the children working so hard with their Big to expand their knowledge of someone influential in our history and the impact it has made on all of us today.”