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Area students have first glimpse of robotics competition at UTSA Main Campus

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(Feb. 17, 2011)--Third through eighth graders from the San Antonio area and as far away as Odessa flocked to the UTSA Main Campus on Feb. 12 to get their first glimpse of the 2011 Getting Excited About Robotics (G.E.A.R.) competition game. Jointly presented by the Interactive Technology Experience Center (iTEC) in the UTSA College of Engineering and the AT&T Foundation, G.E.A.R. is the largest regional U.S.-only robotics competition in the United States for elementary and middle school students.

For the next six weeks, G.E.A.R. competitors will prepare for TransFarmers: Rise of the FarmBots. Using LEGO Mindstorms NXT robotics kits, teams will build and program a robot that can complete simple tasks on the Cyber Acres Farm. Teams will earn points for:

  • successfully harvesting "corn" and "carrots" (small square and round wooden pieces topped with hooks)
  • delivering "corn," "carrots" and "cotton bales" ("cotton-filled bags") to the market (a Stanley three-inch bin)
  • removing "manure" (2.5 inch carpet base cups) from a barn
  • delivering "fresh hay bales" (three-inch paint rollers) to the barn
  • delivering "corn" and "manure" to the alternative fuels plant (a Stanley two-inch bin) and
  • planting seeds (half-inch hex nuts) to create new crops

Last year, more than 1,500 people attended G.E.A.R. including nearly 600 competitors on 125 teams. See competition photos.

G.E.A.R. is an annual robotics competition that motivates kids to pursue careers in engineering by demonstrating advanced technologies and engaging them in interactive, hands-on activities that build technical skills and foster critical thinking, self confidence, communication and leadership. It is organized by iTEC, which was established in 2007 by a four-year, $1.5 million grant from the AT&T Foundation, the philanthropic arm of AT&T.

iTEC's mission is to inspire youth by creating an environment in which they can understand how engineering, science and technology shape lives and the future of the world. Its focus areas include robotics, telecommunications, scanning electron microscope applications and design for manufacturing.

The AT&T Foundation supports programs that build communities and improve access to information technologies, technology training and professional skills development. AT&T Inc. is one of the world's largest telecommunications holding companies and is the largest in the United States.

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About AT&T

AT&T Inc. is a premier communications holding company. Its subsidiaries and affiliates are the providers of AT&T services in the United States and around the world. With a powerful array of network resources that includes the nation's fastest 3G network, AT&T is a leading provider of wireless, Wi-Fi, high speed Internet and voice services. AT&T offers wireless coverage worldwide and the most wireless phones that work in the most countries. In 2009, AT&T again ranked No. 1 in the telecommunications industry on FORTUNE magazine's list of the World's Most Admired Companies.

 

 

Events

Wednesday, May 4, 5 p.m.

School Psychology Symposium and Reception

Student posters will present case studies based on practicum experiences, literature reviews on topics relevant to educational psychology, and other research experiences this year. The event is free and open to the public.
Southwest Room (DB 1.124), Downtown Campus

Thursday, May 5, 5 p.m.

String Project Spring Concert

This end-of-semester concert will feature the 3rd through 8th grade students who have participated in the UTSA String Project this year. The event is free and open to the public.
Buena Vista Theater, Downtown Campus

Friday, May 6, 8 p.m.

First Friday Stargazing

The UTSA Department of Physics and Astronomy, Curtis Vaughan Observatory invites everyone to join them for their monthly stargazing event on top of the Flawn Science Building.
Curtis Vaughan Observatory, Main Campus

Sunday, May 8, 1 p.m.

Accordions Across Culture

May’s Free Second Sunday at the UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures features "Accordions Across Cultures," with performances of Mexican, German and Czech accordion music, a documentary screening and crafts for the kids.
UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures

Monday, May 9, 8 a.m.

The Honeynet Project Workshop

This three-day event will focus on the tools, tactics and motives involved in computer and network attacks. Attendees from around the world will take part in world-class hands-on trainings and technical discussions.
H-E-B University Center Ballroom, Main Campus

Thursday, May 12, 4 p.m.

Master of Public Administration Open House

Visit with faculty, alumni and students to discuss the benefits of and requirements for a Master Degree in Public Administration and/or the Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Administration & Leadership.
Meeting Assembly Room (BVB 1.338), Downtown Campus

Saturday, May 14, 10 a.m.

UTSA Spring Commencement: Ceremony One

UTSA Spring Commencement ceremony for the College of Architecture, Construction and Planning, the College of Education and Human Development and the College of Sciences.
Alamodome

Saturday, May 14, 4 p.m.

UTSA Spring Commencement: Ceremony Two

UTSA Spring Commencement ceremony for the College of Business, the College of Public Policy and University College.
Alamodome

Sunday, May 15, 2 p.m.

UTSA Spring Commencement: Ceremony Three

UTSA Spring Commencement ceremony for the College of Engineering and the College of Liberal and Fine Arts.
Alamodome

Wednesday, May 18, 3 p.m.

The Great Staff Appreciation Event

The UTSA community is invited to honor the roughly 2,600 UTSA staff members who contribute to the success of the university and its students.
H-E-B University Center Ballroom, Main Campus

Thursday, May 19, 6 p.m.

Superintendent Certification Program Information Session

Join UTSA faculty and staff, current students, and area central office administrators/program alumni to learn about this exciting accelerated and web-enhanced program leading to Texas Superintendent Certification. The event is free and open to the public.
BVB 1.322, Downtown Campus


Other Calendars
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