In the last weeks the Basque Centre for Applied Mathematics – BCAM has received several school visits in line with its commitment to bring mathematics closer to society and to promote scientific vocations among young students.
The first of these visits was from students at Barrutialde BHI who won the “Incubator of Surveys and Experiments” contest in its last edition. This competition, The Department of Applied Mathematics and Statistics and Operational Research of the Faculty of Science and Technology (ZTF-FCT) of the University of the Basque Country UPV/EHU, with the collaboration of BCAM and the Basque Institute of Statistics (EUSTAT), aims to promote the teaching and learning of Statistics, Probability, and Operations Research at non-university educational levels.
With the aim of showing them the work done at the center and its different lines of research, Dae-Jin Lee, leader of the Applied Statistics group of BCAM, organized and dynamized for the students a talk entitled “What are mathematics?”. To answer this question, he had the help of several researchers and students of the center such as Joaquín Martínez, Lore Zumeta, Martín Parga and Tomás Sanz-Perela, who explained their research works in a didactic and informative way to the visitors. After their interventions, the students were able to ask them questions related to their work. In addition, in recognition of their work in the competition, they were able to enjoy a guided tour of the center’s facilities.
On the other hand, on December 4th and 5th, 71 students from Kontxa Eskola, San Pedro Apostol, IES Cruces BHI and a family group visited the center to learn about the relationship between mathematics, machine learning and artificial intelligence. With the help of BCAM students Onintze Zaballa and Ander Carreño the visitors learned the basic principles of these disciplines and how to apply artificial intelligence in their projects.
The visit was part of the First Lego League Euskadi, an international educational program with a sports tournament format that seeks to awaken interest in science and technology among children between 6 and 16 years old by proposing a challenge that they must face as a team. This competition, which in the Basque Country is promoted by Innobasque, will hold its final phase in February in a series of meetings that will bring together more than 2,000 schoolchildren in Deusto, Donostia and Mondragón.
Under the “City Shaper” challenge, the participating teams will have to come up with an innovative solution that will enable them to build an environment in cities where they can live and work that will last over time, using today’s tools and technology. In order to face the challenge, the students have the support of different companies and institutions that participate in the training program of the FLL Euskadi, including BCAM, and that provide them with a series of talks so that they can learn more about innovation projects and get in touch with professionals that can guide them during the challenge.