Benjamin Bloom (1964) presented work on the development of educational capacity. He stated that by four age (4), the individual develops 50% of his mature intelligence; from ages 4-8 he develops another 30%, and from ages 8-17, the remaining 20%. This information alone supports our claim that in order to positively guide children toward careers in science, engineering, computer science, and mathematics; we must provide quality learning experiences prior to completion of high school tenures. Hence, we propose to replicate the SSI program and make it applicable to rising 9th, 10th, and 11th grade students.
The URP, SBI, SSI, and SSI-M programs are fulfilling their mission of recruiting, producing, and guiding first-rate engineers, physicists, and chemists to pursue Ph.D's in their respective fields. However, by implementing a program designed to bridge the gap which exists between the SSI-M and the SSI program, we can substantially increase the number of individuals who pursue degrees in these fields. The program, Challenge 2000, is so named because we intend to prepare our participants to overcome the challenges of the 21st century and thus continue their academic pursuits in their respective fields.
The initial exposure to the EPC-Timbuktu Academy will be through the SSI-M for high achieving middle school students. The next exposure will be through the Challenge 2000 program for rising 9th, 10th, and 11th grade students. The third exposure will be through the SSI program and the final exposure will be through the SBI and URP programs.