Our team was honored today by a visit from an international group of women in STEM. The Global Ties Alabama Hidden No More project brought women from Argentina, Australia, Bangladesh, Cook Islands, Italy, North Macedonia, & the United Kingdom to Huntsville for three days of celebrating Women in STEM.
The students started by describing themselves and what they want to do after high school. The international visitors asked questions and gave insight into their worlds. For instance, students in Italy start school days around 8:30 AM just like we do, but they dismiss around 2:30 or 3 PM, much earlier than we do. They don't have the variety of after school programs like us.
After talking about themselves for a bit the team members talked about the projects we have been working on (metal storage stand, battery cart, recruitment efforts) and our robots. They gave a driving demonstration and even let some of the women try their hand at the joystick. The team members explained the control system of the robot, and what they plan on doing with pneumatics.
After spending about an hour with the visitors, they left the robotics lab to go visit the Advanced Manufacturing section of the school.
The CyberJagzz again participated with the Gigawatts, team 7428, at the Huntsville STEAMfest. This is the second year of the event, held in the East Hall of the Von Braun Center in downtown Huntsville. In addition to our two FIRST Robotics Competition teams there were two FIRST Tech Challenge teams and a FIRST LEGO League team. In the photo above you can see the FIRST booth, which extends farther right out of the picture.
The crowd was larger than last year, and the organizers promise an event next year about twice the size. https://www.huntsvillescience.org/
This year we opted to only bring our wooden "learning bot" that we're using to teach systems to the new team members. Right now that robot only drives around on a mecanum chassis and has part of a pneumatics system on it. But that didn't stop festival attendees to line up to drive it.
Today we were part of the Jemison College Academy at the Huntsville City Schools STEM Magnet Fair. We brought a robot and photo boards showing the team activities over the years. We were on the third floor of the Science building at Calhoun Community College. We let students drive the robot while the team members talked about how the robot works and what the team does.
This is Homecoming week, and today the Pep Rally was actually more like a carnival, with different groups having stations around the track by the football field. There was face painting, music, food trucks, and other activities. Our station was robot driving. We brought out our mecanum drive "just for fun" bot and let students try driving it for a prize or candy.
The weather was perfect, with it being in the mid 70's and sunny. Lots of students showed interest in the robot, and we may have gotten a few more recruits for the team.