UT Austin Robotics and Automation Society (RAS)
In February RAS attended Martin Middle School and presented their organization’s current robotics projects. One of which was a collaboration between the club and a local Austin artist to create a robot that paints murals on the sides of large buildings. Afterwards, the middle schoolers played with robots from past competitions. They also learned about the components used in each design.
TSU Summer Outreach
TSU supports summer Outreach Programs designed to strengthen the mathematical preparedness of potential physics majors (pre-College). They include a Calculus program for 9th – 11th grade students given by Dr. Serhiy Bobrovnyk (Houston Community College) and a summer program in Health/Nuclear physics for students intending to concentrate in these disciplines offered by Dr. Mark Harvey (TSU Physics Department).
The “Calculus for 9th Graders outreach program was offered in the summer (2015). TSU hosted a group of approximately 15 students with great success. Stipends were provided for these students, who range in grades up to eleven. The emphasis of the summer program is to demonstrate to students that calculus is straightforward to learn and is a vital stepping stone to meaningful STEM careers. In addition to Dr. Bobronyk, high school students were recruited to help with the program. TSU believes that it is important for their students (both undergrad majors and pre-college students) to be exposed to high achieving high school students from the Houston area. TSU has formed a partnership with Dulles H.S. to bring aboard some of their best STEM majors during the summer. These students also assist in research.
Dr. Mark Harvey conducted a special workshop in June for physics majors interested in Health Physics. This course was primarily intended for younger students who might pursue a track in Medical Health Physics.
UT Austin Summer Outreach
Dr. Pryor (UT Austin Nuclear and Applied Robotics Lab) attended a college fair at East Austin College Prep. Students drove a robot on a small mobile platform around the gym. They also saw a Geiger counter demonstration in order to better understand why robots are necessary in hazardous environments. In May Dr. Pryor went to T.A. Brown Elementary. He spoke to 4 different groups of 5th and 6th graders about robotics and their use in hazardous environments. Students drove around on a small mobile platform.
Two undergraduate UT student robotic associations groups will give demonstrations to middle schoolers in Austin in the near future.