MERC Engineers Support Local STEM Event

WARNER ROBINS, GEORGIA (August 16, 2014) – MERC engineers volunteered this past weekend to help inspire the next generation of scientist and technology professionals.

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Nearly 100 students in second through fifth grade participated in the Georgia Kids’ Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Day, an annual event held in the Century of Flight Hangar at the Museum of Aviation.

MERC shared Google Cardboard with the students.  These virtual reality goggles made from cardboard combines a split-screen 3D impact from a smart phone, with positional sensor data from the phone, to create a 3D visual environment.

The Museum of Aviation provides a wealth of STEM events for kids, home schooling communities, and teachers throughout the year.  Melissa Spalding, the director of education at the museum, strives to offer programs to get students excited about science, technology, engineering and math as young as possible.

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More than 20 businesses were on hand to show the youngsters what options are available in the STEM career field.

To help the students get excited about 3D modeling and computer programming, MERC employees teamed with members of SparkMacon, a new community innovation space, to introduce kids to tools such as ScriptCraftTinkerCad, PiBot, and 123D Sculpt.

About Mercer Engineering Research Center

Mercer Engineering Research Center (MERC) is the research and applied engineering arm of Mercer University, a private university founded in 1833. For over 175 years the University has served Georgia as a highly-respected educational institution. In 1984, the School of Engineering was established at the Macon, Georgia campus, with the charter class beginning studies in 1985.

Two years later, in 1987, the Mercer Engineering Research Center was established under the School of Engineering to provide locally available engineering and scientific services and critical specialized technical skills. Today, MERC functions as a non-profit operating unit of the University, with the Executive Director, Dr. David Barwick, reporting directly to the University president, Mr. William D. Underwood.

To learn more, please visit MERC's website at www.merc-mercer.org.