Spare Parts: Four Undocumented Teenagers, One Ugly Robot, and the Battle for the American Dream, a nonfiction book by Joshua Davis, is the 2016-17 North Lake College Common Book. The book tells the true story of four Mexican-American high school students who, in 2004, assembled an underwater robot out of salvaged parts and won a national robotics competition.
Praised by the Washington Post as “a delightful book” and “a great American story,” Spare Parts follows the four students through the contest and their lives afterward, and explores the challenges of American immigration laws. The book was later made into a movie starring George Lopez as the students’ science teacher.
Author Joshua Davis will visit North Lake College to discuss Spare Parts.
Calendar of Events
- September 22: Immigration discussion panel, hosted by Dr. Roy Vu (NLC faculty, history) and Monica Lira Bravo (DCCCD Trustee). The panel will discuss historical and current social issues around immigration, talk about the book Spare Parts, and celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month. Snacks and refreshments will be served. 1 p.m., Student Life Center
- October 11: Chalk It Up chalk art contest, with Spare Parts-linked theme. 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., lakeside patio
- October 24-25: Visit by author Joshua Davis. Specific event descriptions TBD
- April 2017: Trash Robots competition for Earth Day
- November, March, April: screenings of the feature films Spare Parts and Underwater Dreams
More details will be available soon. In addition, North Lake’s NASA Aerospace Scholars students and alumni will talk about their experiences, the NLC Gallery will host an “Immigrants” photography exhibit, and more.
This is the second NLC Common Book after 2014-15’s It Happened on the Way to War by Rye Barcott.