Over the past several years our UMKC IEEE Robotics team and the UMKC IEEE student chapter has substantially increased the number of SCE students, both currently enrolled and alumni, involved in STEM outreach activities. Sharing their passion for programming, gizmos, gadgets and robots, IEEE student organization and team activities were featured in the UMKC Today article “Big Army, Little Bot”. This year’s UMKC IEEE student members involved in outreach are Eddie Pogosov, Ariel Muthyala, Victoria Wu, Matt Mohler, Andrew Blackton, Victor Skulavik III, Sarah Withee, Chris Wolfe, Mladen Kojic, Eric Gonzalez, RT Leryoskajai, W. Oliver Craig, Cody Kaspzyk, Scott McElfresh and Darren Cogan. The UMKC IEEE faculty advisor is Dr. Reza Derakhshani and Debby Dilks is the UMKC IEEEE robotics team staff advisor.
Fourteen student members and three advisors from the UMKC IEEE Robotics Team travelled to Tulsa, Oklahoma on April 19th for the annual Region 5 IEEE Robotics Competition. Two robots were entered the competition from UMKC’s School of Computing and Engineering, but only one robot was checked-in to compete because of a motor malfunction. Due to a miscommunication, the second robot was placed by a judge instead of a team member (as has been the rule for the past seven years) on the track in a different location than anticipated causing the robot to miss the first targeted energy source. Clement Lumanyika and Andrew Gatrost entered the Circuit Design Competition and came in fourth place. Two Robot Team alumni came to the competition to show their support and various others were watching on UTube. Unfortunately team members Mell Carter and Blake Huntington were not able to attend the competition.
Congratulations to the UMKC IEEE Robotics Team members Scot Banes, Andrew Blackton, Mell Carter, Lisa Chen, Oliver Craig, Tim Gitau, Blake Huntington, Aaron Hurst, Clement Lumanyika, Matt Mohler, Ariel Muthyala, Eddie Pogosov, Victor Skulavik, Jordie Smith, Sarah Withee, Vicky Wu and the IEEE Robotics Team advisors Eddie Burris, Reza Derakhshani and Debby Dilks.
Eta Kappa Nu and IEEE Robotics Team members travelled to Osage Trails Middle School in Independence, MO to teach Electricity and Circuits to over 400 seventh graders! They taught across all seven periods of school on Friday, January 14, 2011. Six circuit kits were set up at tables which allowed the students to build circuits and see if they worked or not. At the end of the presentation, IEEE Robotics team staff advisor, Debby Dilks, gave each of the teachers a kit to use when teaching this subject. Osage M.S. teachers reported that their students left the presentation all excited and saying it was fun. This has become an annual service event for these UMKC student organizations. The teaches thought it was the best presentation to date! Students from UMKC participating as teachers were: Ian Wolstenholme (Eta Kappa Nu, President); Victor Skulavik (Robotics Team Asst Project Manager & Eta Kappa Nu member); Josh Burdick (Eta Kappa Nu member); Andrew Gatrost (Robotics Team member) and Jordie Smith (Robotics Team member).