Electrical engineering students receive $500 incentive

Google will provide incoming freshman in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science with new Android tablets this fall.

According to an Information and Telecommunication Technology Center press release, Google donated $50,000 to provide students with tablets to use in course work throughout the next two years.

Incoming freshmen in the Electrical Engineering and Computer Science will be provided with Android tablets, courtesy of Google.

Incoming freshmen in the Electrical Engineering and Computer Science will be provided with Android tablets, courtesy of Google. -

“Google’s generous donation gives our students in-depth, hands-on experience in mobile computing, an invaluable skill in today’s marketplace,” Glenn Prescott, EECS chair, said in the release.

Brian McClendon, vice president of Google Maps and Earth, and his wife, Beth Ellyn, donated $50,000 to provide EECS freshmen with Motorola Xoom tablets in September of last year. McClendon graduated from the University in 1986 for electrical engineering.

Jason Jones, junior from Overland Park, received an Android tablet at the beginning of this semester, after passing an introductory engineering class. Jones said he thought the tablets were a good way to get students involved in classes. “It’s like giving students a $500 incentive to pass the classes,” he said.

Jones said he has to pass two more classes before he can permanently keep the tablet. According the press release, students must pass EECS classes with at least a C to keep the tablet.

EECS Assistant Professor Brian Potetz said in the press release that students can lose sight of the possibilities of what they can do with programming in the midst of learning numerous technical concepts. The school has developed simplified exercises to capture students’ interest. Potetz and Assistant Professor Bo Luo use the tablets to teach interactive programming lessons.

“It’s good to see what we’ll be programming on,” Jones said.

Jones said he has used the tablet for class and personal work and has already started doing basic programming with it.

Amanda Parks, a freshman from Kansas City, Kan., in the EECS program, said in the press release that she had not owned a tablet before receiving one last fall from McClendon in her Programming I class.

“This opportunity has left me thrilled and excited to be a part of such a great program where the possibilities are limitless,” Park said.

Edited by Nadia Imafidon

  • Updated Feb. 23, 2012 at 1:58 am