[TL;DR: Your booze bucks are going to a good cause. Drink more, create the next generation of scientists and engineers. Whee!]
So it may surprise our five or six readers out there that beneath the reprobate, ne’er-do-well, drunken exterior of the BarBot website lies the tender, beating heart of a federally registered, 501c3 educational non profit.
I know, it shocks us sometimes too.
BarBot falls under the aegis of The Robotics Society of America, a non profit that has been churning along since 1977 (the year Star Wars came out, natch). The Robotics Society has gone through many permutations and leadership throughout the years, until it landed in the capable hands of David Calkins, El Commandante and Presidente Por La Vida (mostly because we can’t find anyone else who wants to do it).
The reason we do BarBot and all our other ridiculous public events is not just to teach drunk folks that robots are cool (though they totally are and we totally do), but to enable us to do real, live educational outreach whenever we can.
So we just want to give a shoutout for The Expanding Your Horizons Conference, a one-day event held by Lawrence Livermore Labs to introduce young women in grades 6-12 to a vast array of career options available to them, and to encourage interest in the Science, Technology, Engineering and Math fields.
You can even Like Them On Facebook.
The Robotics Society, in for the form of Simone Davalos, is going out to Stockton at horrible-o’clock tomorrow morning to teach shiny eager minds how solar cars work, and also that robotics is just the bee’s knees.
Grades 6-12 are really key times in a young girl’s life when it comes to the sciences. Interest in “hard” subjects drops off sharply for girls right here, and it’s super important to show them there are women in fields they might think of as traditionally male.
We at the Robotics Society really love encouraging young women to go for careers in science and tech, and we love being women doing science and engineering at events like this. These events historically have tiny, tiny, tiny budgets, so we help out where we can.
So keep buying your Barbot tickets! You can feel good that there’s a reason to go other than the imminent destruction of you liver.