Multiple, tiny spheres with blinking lights darted across the floor Tuesday morning in the Instructional Technology Center of Eastern New Mexico University-Roswell, controlled by about two dozen area middle school students.
The students, working in teams or by themselves, used laptop computers to program the spheres to move in patterns such as a square or a star, then used data collected by the robot to analyze such factors as its acceleration or speed.
The robotics class was part of a summer camp this week conducted by Trio Educational Talent Search, a federally funded program through ENMU-R that helps students in sixth through 12th grades from disadvantaged backgrounds. The goal of the program is to help students from low-income families or who are potential first-generation college students do well in school and get into a college program after they graduate, Director Daniel Herrera said.
Throughout the school year, ETS provides tutoring services, academic counseling and career exploration.
“When they get to be seniors, we assist them in doing whatever paperwork is necessary for them to go to college, which includes admission, financial aid, scholarship assistance and ACT registration to the school or college of their choice,” he said.