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The Story Behind "Issa the Engineer', an exciting and exploratory Children's STEM Book

Young engineer, STEM, Children's Book, Issa the Engineer, African-American, Hispanic
Issa the Engineer

After nearly a decade in engineering, I've always carried the weight and pride of being the 'only one,' a phrase too familiar for many people of color. Reflecting on my childhood in Detroit, there's a poignant memory of loneliness that fueled an incredible shift into an exploratory phase in technology.


Gone were the days when dolls held my interest. Instead, I found myself with my bedroom window open, sharing cinematic classics like James and the Giant Peach and Shazzam with my neighbors – first-generation immigrants from Iran. These movies, recorded onto a VCR tape by my father, opened a portal to a world of joy and wonder.


One vivid recollection stands out: the day the VCR unexpectedly stopped working. A little ten-year-old me, armed with a screwdriver, decided to dismantle it. After a few minutes of tinkering, I closed it back up, rewound my tape, and dared to try it again. To my amazement, it worked! That summer, I spent my days fixing old VCRs, CD players, and speakers – an unexpected start to what some might call my first real job.


Now, I'm not suggesting you encourage your kids to disassemble household appliances; what I did was unsafe. Yet, it was undeniably safer than the alternative of spending my days on the streets of Detroit. My parents, recognizing the difference in their baby girl, were unwaveringly supportive. They never made me feel different; instead, they encouraged my endeavors as I explored and discovered my passion.


That brings us to 'Issa the Engineer' an exciting and exploratory Children's STEM book. It transcends mere STEM promotion; it's a testament to embracing curiosity, navigating uncertainty, and overcoming fears—especially crucial for our black and brown children. These qualities are the bedrock of budding innovators, fostering a spirit eager to learn and explore. Join me on this inspiring journey of self-discovery and empowerment!


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