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UVa-Wise offers innovative technology experiences through summer camps

The University of Virginia’s College at Wise offered two opportunities during summer break for students to sample innovative technology during summer camps.

The camps, both sponsored by the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science, provide access to 3-D printers, robots and other innovative technology in Darden Hall.

The Summer Program in Robotics and Intelligent Technology, held in June, was a weeklong day camp available for grades 6-8 who were interested in science and technology. 

Students acquired hands-on experience with robots including the LEGO Mindstorm robot by learning to design, customize and program robots while providing students with unique learning opportunities.

“Participants get hands-on instruction and access to cutting-edge technology in a modern makers’ space,” said Daniel Ray, a computer science professor and camp director. “Campers have the opportunity to envision an idea, and bring it into physical form.”

The second camp is a free five-week Summer Program in Technology and Creativity that runs throughout July into the first week of August for select incoming college freshmen and high school students.

This free camp offers pre-college degree experience whereby participants may earn three hours of college credit while focusing on technology including 3D printing, laser cutting and physical and wearable computing.

“We sought out and found creative and ambitious people, and based on their impressive academic records we asked them to join us,” said Ray.

Ray hopes the camp will inspire students from all areas of study to see the benefits new technology can offer.

The program was designed for everyone: future lawyers, future doctors, future fashion designers and future engineers alike,” Daniel said. “Future educators can create customizable educational resources. Aspiring fashion designers can create 3D printed clothing and wearable smart technology. Future theater professionals could create electronic theater props and models. Aspiring artists could create unique sculptures, stamps and stencils for paper art.”

For more information on these and other upcoming technology and events, contact Daniel Ray at 276-376-4628.