Engineering in the community
We're excited about computer science and engineering, and we want to share that enthusiasm through our outreach programs. Outreach programs like Engineers Without Borders and Science Venture promote science, engineering and technology to youth across Vancouver Island. They offer high-quality, hands-on workshops, summer camp programs, in-school workshops and community events for youth from 5 to 18 years of age.
Middle and high school students can get an insider's look at Engineering and Computer Science at UVic by joining us for tours during the November and February reading breaks every year. Students and teachers can tour the labs, talk to professors and current students, and learn what it means to be an engineer or computer scientist.
UVic members of Engineers Without Borders (EWB) are visiting high schools with a hands-on presentation to raise awareness about the world's access to water.
One of EWB's outreach projects, Water for the World, begins with a discussion and slide show about local and global water issues, as well as the role of youth in addressing these challenges.
Students are then divided into teams. Each team represents a country (USA, Canada, Ghana, Cameroon, Uganda and Ethiopia) and is provided with:
- a basic filter container and two cups
- a brief description of the country's status in education, GDP and general health
- instructions on how to make a filter
- play money to buy materials for filter
- dirty water
- Read the whole story...
The basic supplies are the same for each country but the differences lie in the readability of instructions and money supplied. In some cases the instructions are incomplete or partial or complete gibberish. The intent is to model literacy levels within the country and in some cases from the donor country.
Some countries receive more than enough money to buy all of the supplies required and complete the filter project. Others receive next to no money, making it impossible to buy all of the filter supplies required. How resourceful will the "have not" countries be? Will they share resources, ask for donations from richer countries or make do with what they have?
There is a limited amount of supplies and not enough for each country. Extra items that are available at the supply store are clean water and candy. The intent is to see if the "have" countries will just buy their clean water and if they would rather spend money on luxury items instead of providing aid to other countries.
A follow-up discussion, led by the EWB presenters, focuses on reviewing the activity and how it relates to reality. Some discussion will be around the literacy level of each country and how difficult it might be in real-life situations for people to clearly understand instructions. The amount of money each country will be explored and how the "have" countries did or not share with "have not" countries, and how each group felt about this. The students will be engaged on innovative ideas they might have used to compensate for not having all of the supplies and not being able to read all of the instructions.
In the presentation wrap-up the the class is encouraged to come up with ideas to help conserve water locally and to get involved with organizations that can help developing countries.
For more information, or to arrange a visit to your middle or high school, contact Engineers Without Borders.
About Engineers Without Borders
Engineers Without Borders promotes human development through access to technology. One of Canada's most respected development organizations, EWB is comprised of 27 university chapters across Canada. In the past five years Engineers Without Borders have sent over 160 young Canadian engineers to work on projects all over the world. In the last 3 years EWB UVic have sent 4 engineers to Zambia, Ghana and Malawi, and are sending one to Southern Africa soon.
- Experience UVic - UVic's annual open house for prospective students and their families to visit campus and experience a taste of life at UVic. Students can choose to focus on Engineering and Computer Science as part of the day. Contact Margaret Gwyn, recruitment officer, for details.
- Middle and high school tours - Students in grades 10-12, counsellors, teachers, and parents are invited to join us for a guided tour. You'll tour our facilities, see presentations of our exciting research projects and participate in interactive demonstrations. Meet students, staff and faculty and learn more about our programs in Computer Science and Computer, Electrical, Mechanical and Software Engineering. Contact Erin Sebastian at 250-472-5287 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- LEGO Mindstorm weekend workshops - Students work in small teams to build a LEGO robot and program it in this fun workshop.
- LEGO Mindstorm school workshops - This hands-on LEGO robotics workshop exposes students from K-12 to the basic concepts found in computer science and engineering.
- Science Venture Explorers Club - A fun co-ed science club that investigates science, engineering and technology.
- Science Venture Girls Unlimited Science Club - Grade 4-6 girls explore science and technology together.
- Science Venture summer camps - There's something for every age in these Science and Engineering summer camps.
- SPARCS after school club - Students as young as grade 3 learn programming and design their own computer games.
- Engineering and Computer Science Design Challenge - The Design Engineering office organizes design engineering challenge events.
- ACCESS - Computer workshops for aboriginal youth.
- STEM Aboriginal Outreach - Science program for Aboriginal youth including workshops and field trips.
- LEGO Mindstorm school visits - This fun LEGO robotics workshop exposes students from K-12 to the basic concepts found in Computer Science and Engineering.
- Engineering and Computer Science recruitment visits - Our recruitment officer will visit your school. Contact Margaret Gwyn for more details.
- Science Venture classroom workshops - Science Venture presents Girl Guide and Scout workshops, library presentations and other community events.
- Engineers Without Borders school visits - Classroom presentations on Water for the World.
- EcoCAR 2 program - Providing volunteer and co-op opportunities for engineering students to work on cutting-edge automotive technology.
- Engineering and Computer Science presentations - Presentations to community groups about engineering or computer science. Contact Margaret Gwyn, recruitment officer, for more details.
Learn more about engineering and computer science in our live, interactive presentation. In this monthly webinar our recruitment officer will talk about what engineers and computer scientists do, describe the program at UVic, and explain how to apply.
You'll be able to see the online presentation and hear the recruitment officer talking. You'll have a chance to ask questions by typing them in and have them answered in real time.
For more information, or to reserve your spot in the next webinar, email our recruiter at email@example.com.
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