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Special Interest Groups

Special Interest Groups

Aerial Robotics Club

The Aerial Robotics Club is a group of people who are interested in developing fully autonomous flying robots. This year, their primary challenge is to outfit a model helicopter with the equipment and intelligence to locate and assist victims of a disaster, while surviving the associated dangers. The helicopter will navigate entirely without the benefit of human input, in an area with various solid obstacles (telephone poles, buildings, and so on) in addition to more exotic dangers, such as fire blasts and water sprays. The club will enter this project in an international competition, taking place in June.

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The MIT Electrical and Mechanical Exploration Group

The MIT Electrical and Mechanical Exploration Group (MITEMEG) extends the functionality or improves the aesthetic character of existing objects to create such moving couches, networked soda machines, and more.

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MIT FIRST teams up with a local high school to compete in the FIRST robotics competition. The team constructs a large robot which competes in a national competition. The building and design phase of the robot takes place during IAP and 2-3 weeks during spring term. Competitions (Regionals in New Hampshire and Nationals at EPCOT Center in Florida) happen in the months of March and April. The MIT FIRST team is looking for individuals who love to build and have a great deal of enthusiasm.

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MIT Model UN Society

MIT's Model United Nations Society offers a unique opportunity for students to see the world with a more global perspective, not only through discussion and thought, but also through traveling the world and sharing these revelations with others. The society's goal is not to point out the dichotomy between state and science, but rather the opposite. To understand better how to unify these two great institutions, we dive into the other side of science and technology - that which has to do with politics, peace, and humanity.

MIT MUN aims to foster knowledge of the world, and the peoples of the world -- to understand the many different values that each person in our world village may hold and why. With this understanding, members of MUN seek out solutions to the dilemmas and problems that plague the world today. As idealistic as this goal sounds, this problem-solving is also the goal of the actual United Nations. Perhaps by tackling those same problems with the optimism of youth, the analytical skills expert to those from MIT, as well as having the resources of the world's greatest technological institution at our disposal, we can see things that others do not.

The group meets bi-monthly in order to discuss real-world issues in open discussion and mock sessions of the general assembly in order to share the thoughts of the members with their peers. The topics they tackle range from family planning in the third world to self determination, or any other issue which might be of interest to the members.

These meetings also help in preparing for national and international conferences where the mock general assembly can become the size of the actual United Nations. Their most recent performance in Cambridge, England at the World MUN conference put MIT MUN on the map, surprising many by showing that the "techies" do know about cooperation, negotiation, and politics - enough to bring back two awards.

The group hopes to follow their 1998-1999 season with another successful and exciting year. Not only will they be organizing debates at MIT, but possibly also with neighboring universities. They will be sending delegates to national conferences in Boston and Philadelphia as well as to next spring's world conference in Athens, Greece.

No prior MUN experience is necessary to join. The only requirements are enthusiasm, energy, an open mind, and an eagerness to know more about the world.

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New Horizons

The New Horizons Club, founded in January 1999, provides opportunities for students to pursue their interests in areas not typically addressed in course curricula. Equally important is to provide a vehicle to strengthen student and faculty relations outside the classroom. The club is composed of approximately 20 students and 10 faculty members who are involved with the bi-weekly meetings.

Prior to each meeting, members review a selection of articles that set the stage for a lively and thought-provoking evening of discussion. The group often addresses topics that are closely related to issues within your department. Past topics of conversation include Military Defense Spending, the Crisis in Kosovo, Cloning and Biotechnology, Social Security, Conflicts in the Middle East, and US-China Relations. The members are delighted with the success of their club during the past term, and are confident that members will show as much dedication and commitment during the upcoming year.

The goal of the group, in the coming year, is to enhance their activity by hosting open forums and workshops with guest speakers to educate the MIT community at large. They have already begun organizing for a conference on November 6, which will focus on the Development and Management of Biotechnology and Pharmaceuticals. The conference will host speakers from academia and industry, that provide business perspectives and research background within the field of biotechnology.

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