(April 20, 2012) -- An elementary school student team from Aue Elementary and a middle school student team from a San Antonio-based home school were declared the winners at the 2012 Getting Excited About Robotics (GEAR) Competition Saturday, March 31 at the UTSA Convocation Center. Sponsored by Long John Silver's, Time Warner Cable, Valero Energy Corp., Lewis Energy and BP, the event was hosted by the Interactive Technology Experience Center (iTEC) in the UTSA College of Engineering.
The competition featured third through eighth graders divided into 119 teams, making GEAR one of the largest robotics competitions for children in the nation.
This year's event, "Power Up," challenged children to maintain the energy infrastructure of Energy Inc., a fictitious company created for the competition. Energy Inc. employees (competitors) worked with different sources of energy from traditional fossil fuels to green alternatives such as wind and hydroelectric energy. Students built and programmed robots using LEGO® Mindstorms® NXT robotics kits to complete their specific tasks at Energy Inc.
Two seeding rounds narrowed the field from 119 teams to 16. Then, the 16 semi-finalist teams were whittled down to eight and then to four. The final four in the elementary school division included three teams from Aue Elementary and a team from Roosevelt Elementary.
The final four in the middle school division included a home school team from San Antonio, a home school team from Boerne, TMI and Our Lady of Grace. But in the end, the finalist teams, Gatorbot Orange from Aue Elementary and Teckadon from the San Antonio-based home school team emerged victorious.
"GEAR not only allows students to make practical applications of what they learn in the classroom, but it is also fun," said Mauli Agrawal, dean of the UTSA College of Engineering. "The competitive spirit and talent of these future engineers was evident and we are so thankful for our sponsors who see the importance of getting the next generation excited about STEM."
iTEC's mission is to inspire youth by creating an environment where they can understand how engineering, science, mathematics and technology shape our lives and the future of our world. The center's focus areas include robotics, alternative energy, manufacturing, space science, aeronautics, environmental science, geology and forensics.
Take Back the Night is an international initiative to end violence. The event begins with banner making, followed by a march, presentations and poetry reading.
Sombrilla, Main Campus
Members of the UTSA community have published “Adapt and Overcome: Essays of the Student Veteran Experience,” an important book to help active duty military and veterans successfully transition to college life. The event includes a panel discussion with UTSA alumni student veterans who contributed chapters to the book. Guests can also purchase the book. All proceeds benefit the UTSA Student Veteran Association.
Business Building, University Room (BB 2.06.04), Main Campus
The Graduate School is hosting a panel discussion for all of our current students, alumni and members of the San Antonio community who are interested in learning more about graduate education.
Graduate School and Research Building (GSR 1.204), Main Campus
The annual UTSA Graduate fair gives students an opportunity to meet representatives who can provide the information on admission requirements, fellowship opportunities, and other key information.
University Center, Main Campus
A recruiter will speak to potential candidates for the Archer program. The Archer program has helped students land successful careers in public service.
Durango Building (DB 2.208), Downtown Campus
Canadian scholar Jasmin Hristov will present a lecture on paramilitarism, complex type of politically-motivated violence in different parts of Latin America. This presentation will explain paramilitary violence as a tool of economic globalization.
Buena Vista St. Bldg., Aula Canaria Lecture Hall (BV 1.328), Downtown Campus
The UTSA College of Engineering Technology Symposium showcases innovative student projects and research performed across multiple disciplines including engineering, science and business. The public is invited.
H-E-B UC Ballroom (HUC 1.104), Main Campus
The University of Texas at San Antonio is dedicated to the advancement of knowledge through research and discovery, teaching and learning, community engagement and public service. As an institution of access and excellence, UTSA embraces multicultural traditions and serves as a center for intellectual and creative resources as well as a catalyst for socioeconomic development and the commercialization of intellectual property - for Texas, the nation and the world.
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We encourage an environment of dialogue and discovery, where integrity, excellence, inclusiveness, respect, collaboration and innovation are fostered.