UTSA Robotics Camp Welcomes Science Students from Czech Republic

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One of the LEGO robots built during ITEC's summer camp.

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(July 5, 2010)--On Wednesday, July 7, UTSA's Interactive Technology Experience Center will extend a Texas-sized welcome to five winners of the Czech Republic's national science fair. The stop is part of an eight-day tour across the Alamo City to engage the Czech students in a program of scientific and cultural exchange.

"When we were approached with the possibility of hosting the Czech students at our robotics camp, we didn't think twice," said Can Saygin, director of the UTSA Interactive Technology Experience Center which hosts the robotics camps.

"We knew this was something we couldn't pass up. It was a great opportunity for our own students and for our visitors from the Czech Republic."

Five regional science fair winners will accompany the Czech visitors to UTSA's robotics camp. They hail from John Jay Science and Engineering Academy, James Madison High School's Agriscience Magnet Program and Philosophos Academy home school. Together, the students will develop, build and program robots using the VEX robotics system and Easy C programming software.

The summer exchange is sponsored by AMAVET, a Czech science youth organization supported by the Czech Minister of Education and the Czech Republic's National Academy of Science. It was organized by the Alamo Regional Academy of Science and Engineering (ARASE), a local nonprofit that provides outreach to high school students and teachers in 32 countries.

Housed in UTSA's College of Engineering, the Interactive Technology Experience Center is a four-year project that began in 2007 with funding provided by the AT&T Foundation.

ITEC's mission is to inspire youth by creating an environment where they can understand how engineering, science and technology shape our lives and the future of our world.

The center's areas of thrust include robotics, telecommunications, scanning electron microscope applications and design for manufacturing.