IBM sponsors holiday camps for next-gen tech leaders

EX.I.T.E.%20group196X150.gifOTTAWA — More than 60 grade school students are taking time from summer to be engineers for a week. From August 17-21, girls aged 11-13 are participating in innovative activities to help them better understand environmental preservation and how technology can help. Camp activities include: geocaching, an outdoor activity using GPS receivers to hide and seek containers; learning software programming concepts through Scratch, a new visual programming language that makes it easy to create interactive stories, animations, games, music, and art; creating and delivering effective presentations; and a visit to Carleton U. They are participants in an IBM-sponsored EX.I.T.E. (EXploring Interests in Technology and Engineering) Technology Camp, one of 30 IBM programs taking place across Canada, the U.S., Africa, Asia, Europe and Latin America this summer.
In July, another group of Ottawa boys and girls aged 11-13 learned how to help stop global warming; how to make their own ice cream; about computer programming; and got a better understanding of the intersection between Jazz music and technology development. At the camp they built "world clouds” using wordle.net; carefully extracted the DNA from strawberries; and learned more about the intricacies of human DNA from DNA11 co-founder Nazim Ahmed. The students also built robots out of Lego and showcased their activities for parents and IBM employees.
IBM Technology Camps encourage middle school kids to develop a keen interest in science, technology, math and engineering and provide info about career and mentoring opportunities in these fields. Local camp participants are nominated by counselors and teachers at regional elementary schools. Beginning with the first EX.I.T.E. Camp in 1999, more than 10,000 young people have taken part.
Technology is now being embedded into cars, appliances, roadways, and electrical grids to make them smarter. This infusion of intelligence is changing the way the world works and creating unprecedented opportunity to improve almost every system, from food transportation, to healthcare to traffic control to retail. The opportunity can only be realized if there are talented people who can think and act in ways to build these smarter systems. The number of jobs requiring math is exploding. By 2010, there will be a billion transistors per human. By 2011, an estimated two billion people will be connected to the internet. Technology will infuse everything. Click here for additional information about the camps.

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