For the first time in the 10-year history of the Student Teacher Outreach Mentorship Program (STOMP), Hawaiʻi school kids came together on the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa campus for a robotics winter camp.

The students, in grades 2–10, met at the new Innovation Lab, or iLab, for hands-on learning in robotics, programming and mathematics. Mānoa undergraduate students from math, engineering and computer science are leading the four days of fun, educational activities.

Created by Professor of Mathematics Monique Chyba, the STOMP program typically involves college students in local classrooms. With the opening of the iLab in March 2016, a modern, collaborative space was created to give UH students and faculty the opportunity to innovate and commercialize their ideas. To promote STEM outreach, the iLab also gives young students a taste of college life as well as the chance to be a scientist for a few days.

“We’re really excited about the iLab space and the way it brings Mānoa student mentors and school kids together to learn about STEM,” said Chyba. “We are hoping it will lead to a spring break camp and summer outreach programs, as well as after school sessions during the academic year.”

University students interested in mentoring school kids or local school coordinators interested in sending their students can contact Monique Chyba at chyba@hawaii.edu.

Two school students learn about robots from a UH mentor

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