Summer Study '07: What Do the Phase II Scholars Do?

Picture of Tony at a desk with a pipette.
'06 Scholar Tony engages in biotechnology during Summer Study.

Phase II Scholars return to the University of Washington campus for their second Summer Study. They meet the Phase I Scholars, learn about college life and career preparation, and participate in a one-week workshop with postsecondary instructors.










Curb Cuts in Cyberspace

Brandon, Jenny, Jesus, and Ryan; Phase II Scholars

In our Phase II workshop, Curb Cuts in Cyberspace, we learned about Web 2.0 and web accessibility for people with disabilities. We also learned how people can connect with each other via the Internet. We looked at, a social networking site that is very popular but was a first for some of us. Wendy Chisholm, who used to work for the Web Accessibility Initiative at the World Wide Web Consortium and who now works for DO-IT, lead the workshop.

We learned that lots of websites are not accessible to individuals with disabilities. Accessibility barriers include websites that use text that cannot be increased in size, sites that can only be navigated with a mouse, and those incompatible with screen-reading software (typically used by people who are blind). We also learned that it is important for web authors to limit the use of Flash (a type of web design software), include headings, and associate labels and form elements.

We learned how to evaluate websites for accessibility using the AIS Web Accessibility Toolbar. Finally, we had a lot of fun making our own video about web accessibility.

What Do You NOAA?

Cassie, Jesse, and Kayla, Interns; and Daniel, KJ, Taylor, and Zach, Phase II Scholars

The National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) workshop, coordinated by DO-IT Ambassador and NOAA Intern Annemarie, addressed environmental issues and policies.

We learned about Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs). GMOs are plants and animals that have had their genetic makeup altered. This alteration can improve a plant's resistance to chemicals. Crops that can be sprayed with more chemical substances increase chemical waste pollution in our environment. We also learned that a threat to environmental health is mass-produced, subsidized agriculture, which grows food faster, but in less environmentally friendly ways.

During the workshop, we learned about the types of salmon, their life cycles, and how human actions disrupt those life cycles. Littering and chemical waste dumping, which unfortunately occur frequently, negatively impact salmon habitats and spawning areas, causing a sharp reduction in salmon population. Additionally, dredging and damming make salmon easy targets for predators like birds. Dredging involves pulling up large masses of mud from the water to allow larger boats to pass through the area. The mud piles up into small islands where birds that prey on salmon nest. Since the salmon that pass by this island are young, they are no match for these predators. One of the largest threats to salmon is copper poisoning, which results from the copper fallout from motorized vehicles. Copper damages salmon's senses, causing them to be more vulnerable to predators.

Besides learning more about current environmental concerns, we also had a history lesson. It was the story of the people who lived on Easter Island. The inhabitants of the island cut down all of the trees. This deforestation wiped out all of the native animals, leaving the landscape barren and desolate.

Overall, the workshop was interesting and informative. It served well to educate us about what we must do to protect the environment.

Hit the Note! Right in Tune

Alex, Gabe, Katie, Sam, and Tony; Phase II Scholars

For our Phase II workshop, we went to Egan's Jam House in Ballard, a neighborhood in Seattle. We worked for five days on a music video. In our Hit the Note! class we learned how to use Windows Movie Maker, Google Earth, and 3-D ME, an animation program. We used these tools in the production of our video. Using Google Earth, we found places and saved them using a "push pin" feature. In 3-D ME, we rendered our portraits into 3-D models and added dialogue to our characters (or avatars). To finish our project we applied our recordings, dialogue, and 3-D rendering into one piece and applied a Bossa Nova sound track. Our workshop was fun, interesting, and a great creative experience for all of us.

Karaoke Night '07

Andrew, '05 Scholar

Today as we rejoice in each other's company,
Laughing and singing on this magical occasion,
Eating ice cream and enjoying the moment,
While ever improving our communal relation.

With our strength, we have great power,
The power to inspire and lead the way,
Giving ourselves to a common cause,
For others who might need us someday.

We are strong, powerful, united,
One people stemming from the individual,
Bound by a mutually shared love,
Standing tall, together, enduring, residual.

Providing trust, tolerance, and truth,
Finding ourselves through one another,
Recalling similarities of our diverse pasts,
Seeing ourselves through the eyes of each other.

These are the days we will remember,
For the rest of our lives,
A community growing together, intertwined,
As its new threads arrive.

New scholars of DO-IT,
You have found your way into our hearts,
You will stay with us forever,
Well after Summer Study departs.

You are now the newest ingredient,
Of the DO-IT recipe for success,
Adding to a colorful menu of voices,
All of which you can easily access.

We're here for you whenever you're in need,
We're here to help, here to stay,
Ready for you during life's surprises,
Ready to clear the runway.

Flying, together, past the darkness of dusk,
Finding our way through the heavy clouds of life's unknown,
Rising ever higher through the foggy mist of dawn,
For a tomorrow, bright and beautiful, never again alone.

And as we do at DO-IT,
Let's have some fun,
Sharing our time,
Together as one.

Singing songs by M. J., Marvin Gaye, and Beyonce,
Carrying on, until the night is gone,
And continue soaring, on into the morning,
For is it not Karaoke night, c'mon guys, let's get this party started right.