Hello, my name is Franklin Stewart, I am a graduate student at Northern Arizona University, hailing from the Navajo Nation (Kayenta, AZ). While working with 4CSCC for the last year, I have gained professional skills when developing software, leading multiple environmental education and STEM workshops focused on scientific computing. My involvement with 4CSCC has helped me jump start my career by utilizing my areas of study in Technology Management (BBA) and Organizational Leadership (MOL). This opportunity enables me to give back to the Navajo/Dine tribe.
My initial project with 4CSCC was to develop and utilize a weather station that collects wind speed, wind direction, and rainfall data. This project was developed with the help of my fellow colleagues, from the Caporaso at NAU. Data is collected and used on a Raspberry Pi Pico W. The coding developed for my project has been integrated into other 4CSCC student projects (link Alicia and Tracey’s project) focusing on air quality. Our plan is to have a fully functioning weather stations for remote use. My favorite topics throughout the project were using software developer tools and practices with Visual Studio, GitHub, Jekyll, and Docker.
Three things learned in this project include use of ADC on a Raspberry Pi Pico W. Reading and converting analog signals on the Raspberry Pi Pico W to digital using the ADC pins. Our weather station has reed switches, which sends magnetic/analog signal that are converted to digital by using the ADC pins on our Pico W. Second, is use of GitHub, we are given access to the 4CSCC repository to update their website with blogs, lessons, and other schemes. This is a common way teams collaborate and assure projects are being done and handled properly. Lastly, being involved as a lead presenter for the Environmental Education Outreach Program was a highlight. Its challenge of working with multiple age groups at a time was an interesting way to learn how we share our knowledge as leaders. Elementary students seem more involved in experimenting with our data sensors, while high school students were more interested in how the code works. These approaches required immense understanding of how to get students involved. Incorporating these experiences into future academic and professional goals is essential. Emphasis on communication is a major part for every project in an organization. Keeping well informed participants with sensible documentation is one aspect to carry. Keeping a documented checklist or informing each other about desired goals is what helped me achieve these goals. Sharing resources and providing a solid explanation to team members is another experience. Every participant involved with the project must try to adhere to project standards, for instance, setting up our web blogs and web pages required a stylized format. Teachings established in these projects will be carried on in our future goals, such as how we provide outreach lessons, we are preparing ourselves to lead teams.