SPS Observer

UCA Google Hangout Seminar Series Featured in SPS Observer

The summer edition of the SPS Observer includes an article on the UCA Google Hangout Seminar Series. This series of seminars has been organized and championed by Dr. William Slaton. Over the last two years more than 20 speakers, from as far away as Australia, have given live presentations of their research to UCA students and faculty. The topics of these presentations range from the physics of bacteria to cosmic background radiation. Each of the presentations is available on YouTube and you can receive updates by following the twitter hashtag #GHOSeminar.

The schedule for future seminars is at http://faculty.uca.edu/wvslaton/GHOSeminar.html.

To read the article go to the summer edition of the SPS Observer.


Computer Coding 2015 @ UCA

2015 Coding

Computer Coding 2015 @ UCA for middle and high school students is a summer program sponsored by the Department ofMathematics, Department of Computer Science, and STEM Institute at UCA.

The goal of this program is to provide kids with an early opportunity to learn computer programming. The students will be taught basic programming concepts, various simple computing techniques and problem solving skills with some hands-on project work.  “Scratch” and/or on-line resources will be introduced so students can practice and work on their projects.  Students will learn important basic mathematical and computer concepts that improve their creative thinking, logical reasoning, problem solving, and team collaboration skills.

The program will be conducted by Mr. Sudheer Kavi, a Senior Solutions Developer at Acxiom and an adjunct professor of Computer Science at UCA.

When: June 9-July 3, 2015

Where: Math and Computer Science Building, UCA Campus

Cost: $75 per student

To Register or for more information go to: http://tinyurl.com/coding2015



Geography in the News

Cadron-Settlement-ParkKudos to Steve O’Connell and the Environmental Science and Geography students that have been working on the Conway Parks and Recreation Master Plan for the past year.  There was a very positive article (for our College and UCA) on the front page of the April 15, 2015 Log Cabin Democrat.   It mentioned two faculty and two groups of students from the CNSM being involved in the Parks Project.

This project is a good example of what geographers do at the cultural/economic end of our discipline.  As Geography is the “new kid on the block” in our College, our discipline is sometimes still misunderstood, as it is with the general public.  Once past grade school, we do not memorize capitals or locate countries on maps.   We gather spatial data; in this case park location, size and type, sidewalk and bike access, demographic proximity and related factors.  Then we analyze current and past use trends, but most importantly predict future use trends and options that might impact these trends.

To read the article go to: http://thecabin.net/news/2015-04-15/uca-students-help-develop-parks-plan#.VT-KZKY4Lbk

Prep for Pre-Algebra, Algebra I, & Algebra II Summer Program

Algebra CampTrack 1 – Pre-Algebra Prep Class (June 8 – July 2, 2015)
Meets Monday – Friday from 8:30 a.m. – 9:20 a.m.
Designed for rising 7th and 8th graders who will be taking Pre-Algebra or an equivalent class in the
upcoming academic year.

Track 2 – Algebra I Prep Class (June 8 – July 2, 2015)
Meets Monday – Friday from 9:30 a.m. – 10:20 a.m.
Designed for rising 8th and 9th graders who will be taking Algebra I or an equivalent class in the
upcoming academic year.

Track 3 – Algebra II Prep Class (June 8 – July 2, 2015)
Meets Monday – Friday from 10:30 a.m. – 11:20 a.m.
Designed for high school students who will be taking Algebra II or an equivalent class in the
upcoming academic year.

Workshop Location: UCA-Math & Computer Science Building, Rm. 212
Instructor: Dr. Clarence Burg, Associate Professor-UCA

Each class limited to 18 students

Cost of workshop: $80 per track

For more information or to register, please visit uca.edu/outreach/algebra

Master Project Presentation

The Department of Computer Science invites you to a Master Project Presentation:

Speaker: Mani Krishna Mudiganti
Title: Image Stitching & Binarization
Date: Thursday, April 30th 2015
Time: 1:00 PM
Place: MCST 339

Image processing is any form of signal processing for which the input is an image, such as a
photograph or video frame. Our goal is to stitch various partial photos and make it look like a
single image without any overlapping. The project is primarily constitutes of three parts
including 2D image stitching, 3D image stitching and the image binarization techniques in order
to get good results from the degraded image.

Our primary goal is to build a 2D image of various buildings in the UCA campus. I actually
used a drone in order to capture these pictures for image stitching. A 2D image can be stitched
with ease because, there are various commercial and online software tools available to perform
the image stitching. However 3D image stitching is completely different from 2D image
stitching, because it needs various steps to be followed in order to create a 3D image. The
software’s provide the different editing options to edit the images after the stitching process is
done. But the image after it is stitched may contain some issues like the ghosting, parallax error
and overlapping. Once the image is stitched we can crop the portion of image which we require
for use. We were successful in building the various 2D images in the UCA campus as well as
the 3D images.

The last part of goal is to build an image that is crystal clear, because after the image is stitched
there may be some overlapping between the images. In order to overcome from some of these
issues we use a Image Binarization technique I was successful in building a clear image for the
degraded images which have text in it. All the concepts related to image processing research are
clearly explained in our documentation.


Biology Capstone Poster Session

The Department of Biology invites you to come by the Lewis Science Center foyer and the Biology II lab, LSC 127, on Thursday, April 30th, from 1-2 pm where students in the capstone courses will be presenting their final projects as posters. Posters will cover Animal Behavior (David Dussourd), Microbiology (Zaida Gomez-Kramer), Environmental Practicum (Ginny Adams and Matt Connolly) and Restoration Ecology (Sally Entrekin). The students have worked very hard on these projects and they are excited to get a chance to communicate their results to a larger audience.

Classified Employee of the Year

Christy PeelChristy Peel, Administrative Specialist III for the Department of Chemistry in the College of Natural Science and Mathematics, won the 2015 Classified Employee of the Year Award.

The Employee Of the Year is a UCA full-time staff member that has shown extraordinary performance to the University community over the past year. This person is a well-rounded employee that goes above and beyond and truly cares about students, colleagues, and UCA.

Dr. Patrick Desrochers, Chair of the Department of Chemistry, writes:

Christy anticipates needs before they are manifest.  Evidence of this is her proactive approach to researching and troubleshooting departmental needs while they are only in the discussion stage.  This establishes her as a valuable contributing member of the department’s administration.  She often makes inquiries (by phone or email), based on planning discussion, and on her own initiative that provide useful data on which a final departmental decision can be made.  This greatly increases the efficiency of departmental operations and increases the volume of work accomplished.

Christy’s knowledge of hiring, budgetary, and purchasing procedures at UCA is a real plus for the department.  This knowledge translates into timely purchasing and good stewardship of departmental budget allocations.

Christy is consistently courteous to faculty and students coming to the department seeking help with classes, etc.  This contributes to a positive work environment and to a positive perception from the students about chemistry and UCA.

The department is stronger at better able to meet its obligations with Christy in the office.

The award was presented at the 2015 Employee Service Awards held on Thursday, April 16th, in the Student Center Ballroom.

UCA-STEM Power for Girls

Hosted by the UCA STEM Institute

Friday, May 22, 2015

Participants will attend breakout sessions on different STEM careers such as mechanical engineering, fisheries pathology, computer science, and biology education.

Event InformationUCA-STEM-Power-for-Girls

Open to: Female students in High School (10th, 11th, and 12th grades) and female college students (Freshman and Sophomores).
Time: 8:30am—3:30pm
Location: University of Central Arkansas
Breakfast and Lunch will be provided

Registration Link: http://tinyurl.com/girlsconference

For more information contact UCA STEM Institute, (501)450-3426

Engineering is Elementary

Engineering is Elementary (EiE) is a curriculum program that integrates engineering with elementary science topics. Connections with literacy, social studies and mathematics can also be made.

The Attraction is Obvious: Designing Meglev Systems
Designing Meglev SystemsInnovative “meglev” or magnetic levitation trains move by using magnets instead of wheels.

During this workshop participants will explore the concepts behind these concepts. The explorations are a vehicle for technological innovations behind these trains to come alive for students in this transportation-engineering unit. The participants will have access to all materials that are needed to implement this unit in their classroom.

Two sessions available:

  • February 17th & 24th 4:30pm to 8:00pm (must attend both dates)
  • March 4th – 9:00am – 3:30pm

EiE handout
For more information go to http://uca.edu/steminstitute/engineering-is-elementary-eie/

Free Robotics Camp


UCA Computer Science & STEM Institute Robotics Camp

Saturday, April 4th – 8:30am-12:30pm

Have you ever wanted to build and program your own robot?
Sponsored by a NASA EPSCoR grant, the UCA Computer Science
Department and STEM Institute are offering a free half day camp
on using the Lego EV3 Mindstorms and EZ robots (Six, Roli, or
JD). In this camp, you will learn the basics of robotics and will
work hands on with one of our robots. Our instructors will work
with you step by step in constructing, programming, and operating
the robot of your choice. This is open to 6th – 8th grade students
who are interested. No prior experience needed!

Robotics Day Camp
For more information go to http://uca.edu/steminstitute/robotics-spring-2015/
To register go to www.tinyurl.com/ucarobotics