The BlueBox is a small digital library containing preloaded educational material to facilitate education in the most remote areas of the world. Even without Internet, the material on the BlueBox is free and accessible to any device that connects to the BlueBox hotspot. Using either a wireless or a wired connection, communities, teachers, and students can connect to the BlueBox and view the materials in any installed web browser on their device. A solar version of the BlueBox can also be deployed in areas without electricity. The BlueBox is a Raspberry Pi-based system that contains educational resources including open-source textbooks, Khan Academy videos (tutorial videos in math, science, and many other subjects), Wikipedia for Education, Project Gutenburg (thousands of books), OER2Go materials from World Possible (educational games, reading, music, and much more), the learning management system Moodle (locally designed online courses and training), and more.
Vision, Mission, and Values
To create educational opportunity for all with the assistance of local partnerships through innovative technology.
To assist local partners in education through delivering innovative educational technology in a creative, sustainable, and affordable manner.
To teach others, share gifts, pursue justice, and show concern for the poor and marginalized in the world through the dissemination of affordable educational resources.
In 2015, Charles Braymen, associate professor of Economics and Finance at Creighton University, sought to fulfill a need for both greater access to educational materials and mobile device charging in parts of developing countries. After finding open-source educational resources from World Possible, Braymen worked to find ways to deliver these effectively and sustainably to different parts of the world.
The original educational resources were stored on an image that had to be installed onto a computer. As this required electricity, it was not a sustainable or reliable option. Therefore, Braymen initially conceived a solution to this problem with the idea of storing educational resources on a Raspberry Pi. He then developed the first BlueBox prototype in partnership with Creighton University’s RaDLab. This solar-powered box has been installed in various countries throughout the world.
Since inception, the BlueBox project has partnered with numerous organizations around the world to add and modify content according to the needs of surrounding communities. Such partnerships have led to placing BlueBoxes in refugee camps around the world with a future goal of implementing a structured language learning course.
Furthermore, a service-learning course was developed and is now offered at Creighton University. This multi-disciplinary service-learning course enables students and professors to collaborate and design the latest BlueBox technology. The course includes the deployment of BlueBoxes to various schools and churches in the Dominican Republic and training of teachers and students.
With constantly changing technology, the future of the BlueBox is unforeseeable and its opportunity and outreach is vast. The success of the BlueBox would not be possible without the many partnerships and talents of those involved.
With a strong leadership team dedicated to furthering the vision, mission, and values of the The BlueBox Project, this project is expected to flourish and bring educational materials to students and communities around the world.
Charles BraymenPh.D., CFA Economics and Finance
Charles Braymen has been a professor with Creighton University since 2011 in the department of Economics and Finance at the Heider College of Business. He currently teaches classes in international economics, international financial management, and courses in the graduate of finance programs. Charles Braymen’s idea to develop a practicum for undergraduate students stemmed from his desire to embrace the diverse skills of Creighton students and create a lasting impact on the world. He emphasizes the importance of working with local partners to compliment current needs and learn how to adapt the technology of the BlueBox to its environment.
Dustin OrmondPh.D. Business Intelligence and Analytics
Dustin Ormond has been a professor with Creighton University since 2014 in the department of Business Intelligence and Analytics at the Heider College of Business. He currently teaches undergraduate and graduate classes in the areas of database and cybersecurity. Dustin Ormond’s passion for learning and developing technology has led him to join The BlueBox Project where he immediately saw how a small contribution could enable people to receive the education they need to empower themselves and improve their society.
Demand for the BlueBox has dramatically increased due to its impact on the world. We strive to educate the world and experience joy in hearing how people are impacted.
Have additional ideas?Let Us Know
The BlueBox Project continues to expand with more offerings of free educational resources from a variety of sources. We are constantly seeking additional content for the Bluebox.
Want to contribute?Reach Out
We are always looking for more partnerships. We have partnered with schools, communities, churches, and non-governmental organizations around the world.
Interested in a partnership?Contact Us
The practicum course challenges students to enhance The BlueBox Project by proposing ideas and then self-selecting into groups to tackle these ideas. Past ideas include building a BlueBox app, creating the BlueBox website, seeking additional partnerships, adding new materials or enhancing existing materials, and creating a Moodle course.
Students in the practicum course learn to support partners operating around the globe. This includes communicating with school and community leaders, training people how to use the BlueBox, examining cultural and economic conditions, and gathering and incorporating feedback, dialogue, and surveys from site visits.
One major underlying aspect of the practicum course is that it has a major service-learning component. Students are expected to incorporate their knowledge to serve communities throughout the world.
The practicum course involves many stakeholders from developers to end-users. Students learn to collaborate with peers, faculty, community leaders, school administrators, and partners across the globe.
The practicum course integrates students across multiple disciplines including business, art, and science. Students enhance their own discipline-specific knowledge through engagement with interdisciplinary teams, technology, language training, and project and environment analysis.
The nature of the practicum course requires students to connect with their peers beyond what is expected in a typical course. Through shared experiences, students develop long-lasting friendships by proposing and working on exciting ideas, traveling abroad, and playing together.
Fall 2020 practicum applications are open:
Fall 2018 Practicum Class
The Practicum in International Development gave me an incredible outlet to leverage my skills with technology, and apply them to my interests in international business and development. It was easily one of the most impactful experiences at Creighton - from the skills I learned, to the people I became friends with along the way.
Fall 2018 Practicum Class
Communicating and translating in the Dominican Republic challenged me to apply the Spanish skills I have been learning for many years. I discovered I am more capable of being courageous and vulnerable in making mistakes and learning from them. This course provided many opportunities for me to grow personally and intellectually.
Fall 2018 Practicum Class
This practicum allowed me to apply research skills learned throughout my academic career in the real world and develop my skills further. Being a part of the process in creating an IRB form to conduct research was very unique and overall, the class was one of the most incredible experiences I have had here at Creighton.
Day 1: Saturday
- Travel from Omaha to Santiago
Day 2: Sunday
- Mass (optional)
- Tour of ILAC and Santiago
- Equipment Preparation
Day 3: Monday
- Site visit to a school
- Equipment Preparation
- Dinner in Santiago
Day 4: Tuesday
- Site visit to two schools
- Lunch in comunidad
- Pack for Dajabon
Day 5: Wednesday
- Site visit to Batey Liberdad (Haitian community)
- Site visit to Batay Dos (Haitian community)
- Afternoon at the beach
- Travel to Dajabon
Day 6: Thursday
- Visit with Jesuit Refugee Service in Dajabon
- Tour of Dajabon
- Site visit to Casa de Cristo (Haitian shelter for children)
Day 7: Friday
- Dajabon Market Day
- Tour of Codevi (factory on Haiti and Dominican Republic border)
- Return to Santiago
- Final reflection
Day 8: Saturday
- Travel from Santiago to Omaha
The BlueBox Project has received international recognition. Below are a few mentions of the project in the news.