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‘Bot Diggity: r-one Robots For All

Bot Diggity robotsThey clean floors, deliver drinks, fetch like puppies, even tell jokes. But can personal robots improve engineering education?

James McLurkin, an assistant professor of computer science at Rice University, certainly thinks so. And no wonder. The pioneer of swarming robotics has seen his bagel-size ’bot transform an introductory engineering course into an unabashedly fun way to convey circuits, mechanics, and other core concepts.

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National Robotics Week 2015

National Robotics Week 2015 logoA Robot Block Party on the campus of Brown University in Providence, R.I., FIRST Robotics and LEGO League contests, and Botball regionals in New Mexico are just some of the 250-plus events taking place around the country during National Robotics Week.

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NASA to Teens: Game On!

DUST game imageWorking with students from the University of Maryland and Brigham Young University, NASA engineers have created a free, alternative-reality game called DUST designed to get teens – particularly young women and minorities – interested in STEM. The challenge: Figure out how to save their parents after meteorites drop a mysterious dust that knocks out adults worldwide.

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NACME Student Scholarships

NACME Student ScholarshipThe NACME Pre-Engineering Student Scholarship Program recognizes the nation’s highest achieving African American, Latino, and American Indian high school seniors who have demonstrated academic excellence, leadership skills, and a commitment to science and engineering as a career goal. Each winner receives a $2,500 scholarship. Apply by March 15, 2015.

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National Engineers Week 2015

Engineers Week 2015 logoNominate a great middle or high school STEM teacher for a $2,000 award, introduce a girl to engineering, or coach a Future City team. National Engineers Week is Feb. 22 – 28, 2015 and there are plenty of local events and hands-on activities to raise awareness of what engineers do and how their work makes the world a healthier, safer place.

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Girls Who Code Summer Program

Girls Who Code logoApply by February 12, 2015 to attend the Girls Who Code Summer Immersion Program, a free, seven-week course of intensive instruction for high school sophomores and juniors in robotics, Web design, and mobile app development. The program also includes mentoring, demos, field trips, and workshops led by the computer industry’s top female entrepreneurs and engineers.

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Dupont STEM Essay Contest 2015

DuPont Challenge 2015 logoThe DuPont Challenge is one of the country’s oldest and most prestigious essay competitions for students 13 and older in grades 6-12. It focuses on scientific and technological developments that create solutions to such pressing global challenges as food, energy, and protecting the environment.
New deadline is February 9, 2015.

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National Youth Science Camp 2015

National Youth Science CampThe National Youth Science Camp (NYSC), one of the country’s premier science education programs, offers graduating high school seniors a month of outdoor adventure and hands-on projects in the beautiful woods near Bartow, W.V., all travel costs and camp fees paid.

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Blue LED Beams Nobel Fame

Blue LED sculpture Makoto TajikiLight-emitting diodes illuminate everything from traffic signals to shimmering sculptures like this one by Makoto Tojiki. But the researchers whose early 1990s breakthrough – a blue-light LED – made today’s energy-saving white lamps possible toiled mostly in the shadows… until they won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 2014.

No longer. In September, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences awarded the Nobel Prize in physics to Isamu Akasaki of Meijo University in Nagoya, Japan, Hiroshi Amano of Nagoya University, and Shuji Nakamura, a professor of materials and co-director of the Solid State Lighting and Energy Electronics Center at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

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