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May 20
1946 - Cher, great-granddaughter of Placerita Canyon homesteader Frank Walker and onetime Placerita property owner, born in El Centro, Calif. [story]
Cher and grandma


The community robotics team “Heat It Up and Keep It Cool” won the “FIRST” Place Inspire Award at the Asia Pacific FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Tech Challenge (FTC) Invitational Championship Tournament. The competition was held at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia July 15 to 17.

Members of the team include Olivia Smalley of Academy of the Canyons, Haena Lee of West Ranch High School, and Taylor Anne Brown ofSanta Clarita Valley International (SCVi) Charter School.

The Santa Clarita Valley-based team, which also serves as a nonprofit organization focused on the development of high school-aged girls, was the top-scoring individual team and all-around top-scored team. This involved an interview by judges, the judging of the engineering notebook, robot performance, and robot design.

“We are so proud of them,” said Teresa Smalley, the robotics team coach. “They made many friends with teams from the U.S., China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. After the award ceremony they were mobbed by other teams wanting to take pictures with them.”

Ranked No. 2 in the Los Angeles region, the team was one of 50 from around the world competing in events aimed at developing problem-solving, organizational and team-building skills, all while designing and building robots. The international tournament helps participants apply real-world mathematics and science concepts.

The team was also nominated for the Motivate Award for its outreach, the PTC Design Award for robot design, and the Think Award for the engineering notebook.

College of the Canyons was the team’s platinum sponsor, providing $5,000 to help with entry fees, materials, and equipment needed to participate in several competitions.

The donation was part of the overarching mission of the college’s 2013 “Doing What Matters for Jobs and the Economy” sector navigator grant designed to help reorganize the state’s Workforce and Economic Development program.

“We are pleased to have supported this robotic team’s many successes this year,” said Michael Bastine, director of the Center for Applied Competitive Technologies (CACT) at College of the Canyons. “We are looking forward to continuing our support of ‘Heat It Up and Keep It Cool’ in future events.”

After the competition, the team snorkeled the Great Barrier Reef, toured Brisbane by boat, explored the rainforest in Karunda, and visited an aboriginal cultural center in Cairns. The girls also visited museums in Sydney and saw a play at the city’s iconic opera house.

“It was a great educational experience on so many levels,” said Smalley.

Dennis Smalley, Garret Smalley and Darrel Robbins served as the team’s technical mentors.

 

For more information about the “Heat It Up and Keep It Cool” robotics team, visit www.heatitupandkeepitcool.org.

 

 

 

 

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HIGHER EDUCATION LINKS
LOCAL COLLEGE HEADLINES
Thursday, May 16, 2024
Entertainment trade publication Variety recently released its 2024 ranking of the top film schools in North America, with California Institute of the Arts named a “Film School Titan." The "Titan" designation places CalArts among the top five film schools on the continent.
Thursday, May 16, 2024
The sunny spring day of Friday, May 10 saw a burst of sculptural flora sprouting on the stage of Graduation Courtyard at California Institute of the Arts. Designed around a botanical theme, the 2024 CalArts graduation heralded a celebration of growth and new beginnings for this year’s graduating class, many of whom began their CalArts journey during the pandemic.
Wednesday, May 15, 2024
Members of the graduating class of 2024 found a home at California State University, Northridge. It was a place that empowered them and gave them the tools to break cultural and generational barriers, and to fulfill dreams first imagined decades earlier.
Tuesday, May 14, 2024
The College of the Canyons Athletic Department has announced its intention to hire longtime Ventura College top assistant Robin Hester, as the next head coach of the Cougars’ women’s basketball program. Hester is expected to begin his new role in summer 2024.
Monday, May 13, 2024
California State University, Northridge students took center stage at a National Institutes of Health conference and presented the results of their own research studies to an audience of medical professionals and prospective medical students.
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