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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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Area middle and high school students learn about "Making Computers Work for You"

Area middle and high school students with disabilities are on the campus of New Mexico State University through June 30 to participate in the Making Computers Work for You program. Participants learn how to design and build projects using computers and computer-aided equipment.

From left to right, Nick Mendoza, Las Cruces High School; Chris Simpson, Onate High School; Aaron Rodiguez, Vista Middle School; Jeffrey Evans, Las Cruces High School; and Kimberly Nelson, an NMSU engineering technology student.

The program, sponsored by NMSU's engineering technology department, the Regional Alliance of Science, Engineering and Mathematics for Students with Disabilities, Mayfield High School and Sierra Middle School, is designed to steer the students toward careers in mathematics, science and engineering.

Anthony Hyde, an associate professor of engineering technology and director of the program, said the greatest benefit to the students is the exposure to science and technology and the confidence it builds at an early age.

"The program is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for kids to be immersed in a total science and engineering program," Hyde said. "The projects are designed to be fun and challenging, and at the same time will give the students enough confidence to want to pursue careers in science and technology."

Students take part in activities such as building a programmable robot that can sense obstacles and light and designing and building dragsters powered by carbon dioxide cartridges.