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For Immediate Release
July 31, 2013

MVC Students Head to UC Santa Barbara Nano-tech Labs


Moreno Valley College's Upward Bound Math and Science (UBMS) summer program sent 24 students to attend the weekend Nanotech Chip Camp, which is held each summer at UC Santa Barbara. Only 40 California students are accepted each year; Moreno Valley College students account for 60 percent of this class.

The UBMS program is designed to strengthen students' math and science skills and help them pursue careers in related fields.

Moreno Valley College's UBMS program, which is the only math and science combination program in Riverside County, is funded through a U.S. Department of Education grant in cooperation with Moreno Valley Unified School District. This is the first year for the summer program, which accommodated 60 Vista del Lago High School students. The group of 24 students on the weekend trip includes freshmen through seniors.

"Many of the students in UBMS are potentially first-generation college graduates," UBMS Director Micki Clowney said. "Thanks to the grant there is no cost to students to participate."

UBMS students work closely with MVC faculty, industry professionals, and community partners to learn about common core principles in math, science, and literature while also attending student development workshops. They also participate in field experiences such as an onboard lab experience on the research boat, The Explorer, at the Ocean Institute in Dana Point.

In Santa Barbara, the students will work in the university's state-of-the-art clean rooms.

"Our UBMS scholars will learn the basics of top-down nanofabrication processes and design their own experiment and test it," Clowney said.

In nanotechnology research and development, scientists work with the molecules and atoms that make up our world. While humans typically measure things in meters and centimeters, nano-scientists work in nanometers--a billionth of a meter. They seek to control these nanotechnologies to make new products or processes, from mobile phones to sunscreens, and airplanes to medicines.

The UCSB Nanotechnology Facility is part of the National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network (NNIN). The NNIN is an integrated partnership of 14 facilities dedicated to providing high-precision processing equipment.

"The combination of facilities, equipment, and expertise provided by the members of the network is unsurpassed in any single research laboratory," Clooney said. "By promoting matches between enabling fabrication technology with research goals across a broad range of disciplines, the network hopes to open possibilities for new research breakthroughs."