BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - The CEO MIND Foundation is a community-based organization that provides educational and empowerment opportunities in underserved communities.
Launched in 2017, they operate youth centers and an initiative to teach people how to grow community gardens (GROW Baton Rouge).
Now the organization is unveiling its latest tech project: the “Transformer” Mobile Innovation Lab.
“We call it the Transformer because the truck itself is a tractor trailer that we built the structure on,” said Executive Director Jasiri Basel. “It looks like Optimus Prime but a newer version of it. So the mobile innovation lab connects back to the Youth Empowerment Zone. Science, Technology, Engineering, Agriculture, Math. The whole nine is what we brought in the mobile innovation unit to the community.”
The lab features walls filled with TVs, tablets, computers, robotics and games.
“We’ve designed it and tuned it in a way where you can have five minute, 15 minute, 30 minute or 45 minute sessions for elementary school, middle school or high school students based on what their demographic is and they can just get something out of the lab itself,” explained Basel.
The most convenient factor about the Transformer is its mobility. The truck is able to get to any neighborhood or school to provide access to education for students who might otherwise not have the opportunity.
“If you want to come on, you want to game, you want to learn something about science, you want to learn something about programming, you want to do some video, we’re bringing these things directly to the community in a capacity like never before,” he said.