research news of note ROBOTS RETURN For the second year is a row, Eastern Washington University, with the assistance of Greater Spokane Incorporated, welcomed the electrifying FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) to EWU’s Reese Court Pavilion. The competition, which took place on April 4-6, is part of EWU’s ongoing effort to promote programs in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). FRC combines the excitement of sport with the rigors of science and technology. It features a real-world challenge to be solved by research, critical thinking, construction, teamwork and imagination. After the rousing success of last year’s Rebound Rumble, 38 high school teams came to Cheney for this year’s game, Ultimate Ascent. Operating under strict rules and time limits, robots built and programmed by each team shot Frisbee’s into goals at the far end of a court to score. At the end of the match, the robots climbed “jungle gym”-like pyramids to earn bonus points. “EWU was honored to welcome these outstanding students to campus,” said EWU President Rodolfo Arévalo. “As we saw last year, the energy, enthusiasm and innovation surrounding this competition will only encourage more students to take an interest in studying science and technology at Eastern and in our region’s public schools.” “The regional competition is an incredible event and we were excited to be able to partner with EWU and FRC again this year,” said Rich Hadley, CEO of Greater Spokane Incorporated. “Investing in STEM initiatives for our youth will help to provide a technically skilled workforce for our business community. FRC is a great way to inspire our students to be innovative problem solvers and to enter science, math and technical fields.”
NEW FACE OF ENGINEERING Eastern Washington University student Paul Brockmann, who earned a BS in mechanical engineering this past June, was named the next New Face of Engineering: College Edition for 2013 by a national building technology society. The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) selected Brockmann for the honor and $1,000 scholarship. The award is part of a national recognition program led by the National Engineers Week Foundation that recognizes the best and brightest junior and senior engineering students by highlighting their academic success and contributions to the industry and participating engineering society. In honoring Brockmann, the society noted he spreads the word of heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) by hosting presentations about new and upcoming HVAC technology, such as dedicated outdoor air systems and building automation systems controls. He also organized a tour of Eastern’s utility plant for other students to see the boilers and chillers. Eligible students must be enrolled in a bachelor of science in engineering program from an ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology) accredited school.
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