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Media Advisory 08-003
Robotics Demonstration to Showcase Education and Research Alliance

Event on Monday, Jan. 14, will commemorate birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. with focus on preparing minority students for scientific leadership

January 10, 2008

On Monday, Jan. 14, 2008, the National Science Foundation (NSF) will celebrate the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by hosting the kick-off of the Advancing Robotics Technology for Societal Impact (ARTSI) Alliance at its Arlington, Va. headquarters. The event will feature demonstrations of dancing robots developed by students at Spelman College as well as robots from Carnegie Mellon University, beginning at 11:00 a.m.

The ARTSI Alliance is a collaborative education and research community of predominately African-American robotics and computer science education faculty that explores how robotics can contribute to society and impact healthcare, arts and entrepreneurship. ARTSI is funded by a three-year, $2 million grant from NSF to encourage African-American students at the K-12 level and in college to pursue careers and graduate education in computer science and robotics.

Andrew Williams, director of ARTSI and associate professor of computer science at Spelman College, will also provide remarks at 10:00 a.m. about Martin Luther King, Jr.'s legacy and his inspiration for the alliance and other efforts to increase African-American leadership in computer science and robotics research. Williams and some of the students involved in the ARTSI program will be available for media interviews.

-NSF-

Media Contacts
Dana W. Cruikshank, NSF, (703) 292-7738, dcruiksh@nsf.gov

The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering. In fiscal year (FY) 2014, its budget is $7.2 billion. NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and other institutions. Each year, NSF receives about 50,000 competitive requests for funding, and makes about 11,500 new funding awards. NSF also awards about $593 million in professional and service contracts yearly.

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