K-12 at University of Alabama at Birmingham

Engineering Boot Camp

The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) launched an Engineering Boot Camp program with 17 local middle and high school students on September 21, 2019.

Program participants are scheduled to attend 10 monthly workshops between September 2019 and May 2020 and a week-long summer program in June 2020. During the program, students will learn about the theoretical aspects and principles of autonomous systems and will be exposed to current and emerging technologies that are shaping the future of transportation.

Examples include Artificial Intelligence (AI), deep learning, smart sensors, image processing, and electrical power drive systems. This new UAB initiative is led by Dr. Abidin Yildirim and is sponsored by STRIDE.

Fall 2019 Girls in Science and Engineering Day

The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) Society of Women Engineers (SWE) hosted the 2019 Girls in Science and Engineering Day (GSED) on October 26, 2019. Eighty 6th to 8th grade girls from 30 different schools in the Birmingham, AL region participated in problem-solving activities, games, and design challenges. Students joined three STEM workshops of their choice out of nine workshops offered that were led by UAB faculty and students. Over 40 UAB undergraduate and graduate students and faculty volunteered for the event and used this as an opportunity to showcase their passion for STEM fields, while at the same time encouraging young girls to consider careers in science and engineering.

The UAB GSED program aims at introducing young female middle school students to the wonderful world of engineering and sciences through hands-on activities and interactions with successful women in STEM. Engineering-related workshops at this year’s event focused on Electrical Engineering, Chemistry, Reptilian Biology, and Computer Science. Other workshops offered during the event included soldering, 3D printing and virtual reality, forensics, binary code bracelets, magnets and MRI. Dr. Kathryn Lanier, STEM Education Outreach Director for Southern Research, provided the keynote address and did a fantastic job breaking down STEM stereotypes and motivating the girls to pursue their dreams.

Students were engaged throughout the day and provided very positive feedback about the event and their experience in the program. The event was co-sponsored by the STRIDE Center, the UAB School of Engineering, and Shipt. Dr. Virginia Sisiopiku served as the event’s director.