Google, Rogers State to Host First AeroGames on Nov. 3

Google has partnered with Rogers State University (RSU) to host the first annual AeroGames Saturday, Nov. 3 at the RSU campus in Claremore.

The AeroGames is a competition for middle and high school students to participate in hands-on events featuring gliders, wind-powered rockets, remote-controlled helicopters, and other wind and aerospace-related objects. In an effort to promote STEM education (science, math, engineering and technology), Google, RSU and the Tulsa Air and Space Museum & Planetarium (TASM) are teaming up to offer a fun, interactive learning experience for Oklahoma students at no cost to schools.

“We hope this event will unite the northeast Oklahoma community to foster an environment of creative and cooperative learning and to inspire students to excel in these subject areas,” said Mike Wooten, operations manager for the Google Oklahoma data center in Mayes County.

The AeroGames will close at 2 p.m. in the Will Rogers Auditorium when keynote speaker Tracy Drain shares highlights of her NASA background with students and guests.

A systems engineer with the Jet Propulsion Lab, Tracy is currently working on the Juno Mission to Jupiter. She will speak of her experiences working on the Kepler Mission, which seeks to explore our Milky Way galaxy looking for habitable, terrestrial planets. Data gathered by Kepler has revealed a virtual smorgasbord of exoplanets in the Milky Way galaxy. She will discuss some of her favorites, and let audience members know how to find even more information about the discoveries.

“RSU is excited for the opportunity to host the AeroGames and increase exposure to science, technology and math for area youth,” said RSU President Dr. Larry Rice. “These games will be fun to watch both for students and spectators, and we’re excited to have someone of Tracy Drain’s caliber speak directly about her experiences with NASA.”

Opening ceremonies will begin at 8:30 a.m. in the Will Rogers Auditorium. The speaking event and all of the competitions and awards ceremonies are open to the public.

Drain also will be speaking at 1:30 p.m., Friday, Nov. 2, also at the Will Rogers Auditorium. Her presentation is entitled, “Good Planets Are Hard to Find … But Getting Easier All the Time.”

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