SAN ANTONIO – More than 100 middle school-age girls from three San Antonio school districts are spending the first part of their summer break building and competing with robots.
Students from Judson, San Antonio and Northside Independent school districts are attending a summer camp at the University of the Incarnate Word called MiniGEMS 2017.
The free camp is a student-run program led by undergraduate and graduate students with a focus on STEAM – science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics.
The goal is to introduce female students to the field of engineering through robotics programs, computer programming, graphic design and guest speakers.
"I feel like it's giving us an opportunity because it gives us girls a chance to be what we want to be and do what we want to do," participant Alongra Gonzales said.
"I like it because engineering is not just for boys. It's for boys and girls," participant Hailey Alvarez said.
On Tuesday, campers had the opportunity to build and compete using the SeaPerch underwater robot at the UIW Natatorium.
SeaPerch is an underwater robotics program that gives students an opportunity to learn basic engineering concepts with a special focus on marine robotics. The name comes from the USS Perch, a World War II U.S. submarine.
Four MiniGEMS camps are scheduled at UIW this summer.