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Champions award raises profile of Center for Dynamic Learning

Students at the Center for Dynamic Learning in Providence take a class in the machine shop.
Students at the Center for Dynamic Learning in Providence take a class in the machine shop.
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The Center for Dynamic Learning in Providence is the Champions in Action recipient for the first half of 2014. The nonprofit received a $35,000 grant and promotional support from NBC 10.

Representatives said both have gone a long way toward the group's goal of providing local youth with a unique learning experience.

On a recent visit to the Center for Dynamic Learning in Providence, teenage girls were working to build solar go-carts as part of an eight-week program.

"I'm creative, so this helps me when we create the go-carts and the motorcycles. I want to build things," said Rhamanya Perry, a student at CDL.

"Hands-on aspect to things, where the girls want to be able to build. They want to be able to drive. They want to be able to learn mathematics in their way," Chief Operating Officer Kevin Cunha said.

Cunha said the work they're doing at CDL has been greatly enhanced by their recent Champions in Action award.

Some of the grant money from Citizens Bank went toward equipment that allows students to create their own parts.

"Now we're able to take parts that sometimes we would have to purchase as a secondary item for the cars and we can make them ourselves. We can make our own magnetic brake systems. We can make our own drive systems," Cunha said.

CDL also used the money to buy new lighting for Travelling Theatre productions. It's allowing students to shine, in more ways than one.

"We are able to play around and program lighting now. The kids are able to learn the tech part of it, as well as learn the theatre aspect of it," Cunha said.

Just as important as the financial support, it's the spotlight of the "Champions" designation that is making a big difference.

"Ever since we got the Champions in Action, we've been contacted by so many people looking to really help us," Cunha said.

Such as a donation of laptops from Fidelity and 3D modeling software donated by SolidWorks to go along with it.

All vital tools to help CDL students grow in ways some never thought they would.

"I never thought I would do it, but I've been doing it four years now, so it's good," Perry said.

"Being here at CDL and being able to physically build something has changed my life a lot," student Samuel Cunha said.

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