High school students engineer their way through summer - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

High school students engineer their way through summer

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JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

He's a fully programmable moving contraption, made up of countless wires and Lego pieces.  

"This is Wally," said Piney Woods high school senior Rosalyn Anderson.

Wally and his fellow robots were built by the hands of high school students like Anderson

"We built it from scratch," said Anderson.

Anderson is one of more than a dozen Mississippi high school students getting a four week crash course in engineering and robotic technology.  

"We come in and we build and we really find out what's behind engineering," said Anderson.

It's a summer program called UNITE, at Jackson State University where Dr. Francis Tuluri says the design is to get the wheels turning in young minds.  

"These are the ways to create interest by opening new technologies and teach them as a platform for learning so that we can spark interest," said Tuluri.

That spark is creating a fire of intrigue to Murrah High School senior DesTenee Green. From lectures on how to build circuits to hands on science, it's all putting a new spin on future ambitions.  

"I want to go into the field of bio-engineering but with the mechanical engineering working with the computer science it's like opening my eyes a little bit," said Green.

By targeting high school students, Tuluri says some who've never considered college are now considering engineering degrees and it all starts with a desire to learn and little fun.  

"He has a light sensor," said Anderson and she picks up Wally again.

UNITE is a program of the Army's Youth Science Cooperative Outreach Agreement for groups historically underrepresented and undeserved in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

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