Teaching / Coursework

Teaching:

1) Design and Manufacturing I (2.007), Student Instructor, Spring ‘13 & ’14

I helped students develop good design skills and thought processes. I answered design questions, instructed how to use the machine shop, and guided them as they developed from a bucket of materials to a (semi-) functioning robot that can compete among others’ robots.

2) Product Engineering Processes (2.009), Team Mentor, Fall ‘14

Advised my team on design choices, presentation techniques, and general “how-to-work-in-a-team” tips. It was interesting to see that many of the issues they encountered my team had also encountered when I was a student in the class during the fall of 2013.


Favorite Classes:

GRADUATE WORK

1) Sustainability Oriented Innovation

This class introduced me to the notion of Sustainability could be a profitable venture. Growing up in the largely hippie region of Central Coast California, I had an erroneous assumption that “sustainability” was just a buzz word for overpriced green juice. This class taught me about how modern business ventures are changing the world for the better through environmentally, socially, and economically sustainable practices.

2) Energy, Technology, and Policy

Taught by Professor John Deutch, this class explored the various ways the Energy sector impacts America. From fallout from “cleaner energy policies” to the actual effect of hybrid vehicles, I learned just how intricately involved seemingly simple policies can become and how important it is to consider all three, energy, technology, and policy, if we want to build the best future for America possible.

3) Science, Politics, and Environmental Policy

Professor Susan Solomon probed the class to explore several policies and their environmental impact. We explored everything from why some people still deny Climate Change to how the EPA has grown and changed over the years to what the “Silent Spring” was and how the suburban-mom found herself involved in a fight for environmental protection.

4) Design Studio

My first year of my masters program involved an extensive (40+ hours in lab weekly, in addition to other coursework) design studio where we learned the fundamentals of user-centered design. I greatly enjoyed working with my hands and achieving a new level of proficiency with machine shop tools but even more so, I enjoyed learning how to truly capture a problem to develop a useful solution. I plan to use this philosophy in the realm of policy-making.

UNDERGRADUATE WORK

1) Design and Manufacturing I (2.007)

This class is a great introduction to learning to create something from just some basic materials. I loved how it helped shape the way I now think about a design problem. By the end of the course, I felt very comfortable working in a machine shop.

2) Product Engineering Processes (2.009)

Definitely the most time consuming class of my MIT undergraduate career, and well worth it. In this class I learned what is involved in bringing a product from ideation through initial prototype and ready for being launched into the market.

3) Furniture Design

This was the first class I took that worked with wood nearly exclusively. I learned about various aspects of wood such as types of cuts, joints, grains, as well as the different wood-working machines (table saw, planers, etc.). My final product was a jewelry box of bent wood with walnut drawers that swiveled out!

4) Measurement and Instrumentation (2.671)

This was definitely a time-intensive class, but well worth it. I learned to design my own experiment; what it means to look up literature on a subject; determine what sensors/devices were needed to conduct my experiment; and just how filled with painful, glorious, and everything-in-between moments data collection and analysis is. 

5) D-Lab Development

An extremely insightful class, I learned about what it means to design products for developing countries. A great stress on understanding your market as well as building things within a budget and locally sustainable is placed in every case study presented as well as the products we design in class. From interesting in-class challenges like how to design a means of suspending dried ears of corn at least six inches off the table with just two pieces of paper (spoiler: you create two cylinders and stack the corn– we managed to suspend 8 ears!) to things such as performing stakeholders analyses, the class definitely challenged the way I think.

6) Chinese I-IV

These were also classes I greatly enjoyed. Not only did I learn how to converse in another language, but I learned a lot about a culture with which over one seventh of the world identifies.


To request a resume, please email me at: chacha@chachadurazo.com

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