TAF volunteers are acknowledged for the important work that they do for the organization. We depend on our dedicated team of volunteers to help us provide quality programming and experiences for students and friends of TAF. “Whether they’re on their own or part of a group, our volunteers make an immeasurable difference.”
Horus is a great example of the ideal TAF volunteer. He volunteers every week with our STEMbyTAF Lab students, attends TAF fundraisers, serve as a TAF Academy judge and was one of the first to become a TAF Catalyst. We recently caught up with him and asked him a few questions about his experience with TAF.
“I enjoy seeing the excitement in kids when they solve a problem they’ve been struggling with and when they’re working together to achieve a goal. One of my favorite moments is when a child who is initially quiet and hesitant gains the confidence to ask inquisitive questions or openly share the solutions they’ve found. To me, this is the essence of being an engineer.”
How did you hear about TAF and start volunteering? It’s actually a mystery how I found out about TAF. A few years ago, somehow I came upon a TAF postcard that briefly described the organization. For whatever reason, it wasn’t the right time at that point so a couple years ago, that card resurfaced as I was doing some organizing and the moment I saw it again, I felt compelled to check it out.
As a practicing software engineer here in Seattle, what drove me to pursue what volunteering at TAF had to offer was an overwhelming passion to help young kids have the same opportunities I did. My goal is to assist where I can given them the tools and encouragement to use technology for the benefit of others.
I began volunteering in the fall of 2013 and have enjoyed so much of the experience whether working directly with kids or as an overall helping hand work where needed.
What have you done at TAF?
My primary role is as an teacher’s assistant in the TAF Lab Robotics class. In addition, I’ve worked as a TAF Expo volunteer, science fair judge, assistant during First Lego League team competitions, or simply blowing up balloons at one of our BBQ outings.
Do you have any TAF stories you’d like to share?
A recent example of when all the hours volunteering really felt amazing was seeing one of our young students come into her own in class. In the first few weeks of the session, she was really reserved in comparison to the other kids even though she worked well on the early robotics projects. As the weeks went by, I could see her growth in assertiveness in class and using her voice in assisting the other kids working through technical issues. The bottom line for me is that these kids have the confidence in problem solving that is at the core science, technology, engineering, and math– I’m happy whether they choose it as a career or not.
How do you spend your free time?
When I have free time I’m most excited about practicing yoga, hiking, collecting all forms of music, and spending quiet time in scenic nature spots.