Career Development / STEM Education

Next generation of manufacturers will be entrepreneurs, innovators

By Milwaukee Neighborhood News Service

Mar 14, 2017

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As early as third grade, when he built a traffic light with his grandfather for a science fair, Qaiyim El-Amin has been “a tinkerer.” As a child, he would disassemble and reassemble radios, video game systems and other electronics — a practice that infuriated his parents and grandparents.

In 2015, El-Amin, 30, who grew up on the city’s northwest side, built his first drone with the help of fellow innovators. Though that initial model literally crashed and burned, he viewed the failure as a learning experience and worked to perfect the design. Eventually, after many attempts the group created a drone that could collect water samples, complete with a waterproof shell and a specialized pump.

“I’m not scared to try things and fail,” said El-Amin, a co-founder of Young Enterprising Society, an organization that helps expose students, many of whom hail from the central city, to new technologies. “I just always feel like, if somebody else can do it, I can do it too. So, I want to figure out how they did it.”

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