Curtis Jones, a local fifth grader at Fogarty Elementary, just returned home from the University of Texas Dallas where he joined outstanding elementary school students from across multiple states taking part in a unique academic and career oriented development experience, the National Youth Leadership Forum (NYLF): Pathways to STEM.
On the first day of camp, the attendees were given a case to solve involving a missing ancient artifact over the course of the five days. Curtis participated in CSI, engineering and medicine related activities such as building and programming robots, fingerprint and blood analysis and how to diagnose and treat a collapsed lung using various engineering methods.
Curtis aspires to be a robotics engineer when he grows up and his mother, Betsy Jones, said that he’s been interested in it from a very young age.
“When Curtis was little, he didn’t play with toys the same way as other kids,” Jones said. “He would take them apart and figure out how they worked.”
With a natural propensity for science, Curtis was nominated to attend NYLF by his Fogarty Elementary school principal Marsha Todd and fourth grade teacher Kim Hinkle. Curtis said that his favorite part of both the camp and robotics in general is building things and using his hands.
Curtis likes to spend his free time coding and has attended Robotics Championships with his fellow team members from techJOYnT. He’s also a baseball player and said that when he grows up, he’d like to “help build the future.”