Science & Tech Expo at CSN Inspired Young Students

Kids interacting with peers and faculty.

By Justin Guzman

Thousands of young adults gathered at the College of Southern Nevada’s Cheyenne campus for the 10th annual Science and Technology Expo on April 19.

The event is designed to expose young minds to the future of science and technology through direct interaction with experienced professionals and community educators.

“I certainly feel a sense of pride…particularly on the Expo’s 10th anniversary,” said Dr. Warren Hioki, CSN’s executive director of technical programs and originator of the event.

CSN degree programs such as biology, photography and engineering displayed interactive demonstrations at the Expo and the robotics department hand built Battle Bot robots. Those exhibits gathered large crowds of students and spectators.

The Science and Technology Expo at CSN is based on a similar event held at Hioki’s alma mater Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo.

“We didn’t have events like this when I was growing up,” CSN graduate and 97.5 radio host Jackie Liu said. The station was the official music provider for the event. “It’s good for students to start thinking about their careers and what they want to be.”

The Air Conditioning Technology Program, known as HVAC, displayed the NextAire natural-gas heat-pump air conditioner. It is the new energy efficient HVAC technology and CSN has partnered with the Department Of Energy to offer degree programs in this.

“The courses are an excellent way for students who are interested in the HVAC field, to learn and specialize in emerging technology,” said Eric Riccardi, CSN HVAC program instructor and maker of the NextAire GHP. “They’re seeing the future of air-conditioning.”

The Air Conditioning Heating and Refrigeration Institute has recognized CSN as the only institution in the nation offering training on this type of equipment.

According to Hioki, the Science and Technology Expo is meant to reach prospective students and community members and also to play a role in strengthening CSN’s ties to the community.

“The idea in the original proposal was for our own Expo to become a community tradition,” Hioki said. Parents at the event appeared to agree.

“She loved it,” said Alice Rodriguez, parent of a third grader attending the event. “For everyone to see all the future jobs there … is really exciting.”

“We have an older son who is 19, who is still trying to figure out what he wants to do,” said Rodriguez, referencing CSN’s HVAC program. “My husband was also interested in learning about this program, so now I have information for both of them.”

The inspiration for the Expo at CSN was gained from The Poly Royal, a campus and community tradition that showcases new technology that has been ongoing since May 1904 and draws thousands of attendees from all over the United States every year.

CSN’s Science and Technology Expo appeared to be a successful showcase of the school’s newest technologies and best degree programs. It clearly affects entire families in the community and is quickly becoming a Las Vegas tradition.

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