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11 Min Read

Starting Off Strong: Provost Challenge

Students Dive Right Into Innovating at UAT

One of our favorite traditions at University of Advancing Technology (UAT) is kicking off each semester with the Provost Challenge. The Provost Challenge, hosted by UAT's Provost Dr. Dave Bolman, is a unique opportunity for new students to dive right into creating, building and innovating the day they step on campus. During CONNECT (UAT's new student orientation), students are separated into groups, allowing them to get to know one another as they familiarize themselves with campus. In just two weeks, the teams conceptualize, design and build out an entire project. Each semester students are given a few elements to incorporate into their builds—this is mostly for fun because who doesn't love a theme? This year's elements included Warhammer 40k, Artemis and memes. 

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Per usual, we were blown away by what these students were able to accomplish during the first 14 days of their college careers. Let that sink in—the very first two weeks of college and they are already building out projects to completion! Impressive to say the least.

Not only does this challenge set the tone for their hands-on technology journeys, it starts building their presentation skills as well. As you can imagine, presenting in front of a packed theater is a bit nerve-wracking, but this bunch did it excellently.

The Projects

Team Link: Project Artemis. Project Artemis is a 3D rendered cyber game built in Unreal that embeds teaching skills that minimize being hacked. With great assets, you play inside a colorful computer, dodging dangerous emails and unwanted pop ups that attack.

Team Princess Peach: Me&meme. Me&meme is a dating simulation game with a choose-your-adventure style design. This well-thought-out script gave the audience a laugh. 

Team Bayonetta: Artemis Defense. They were not only able to complete this build, it is also currently downloadable for Android. With a Galaga style design and cute animals in space suits, Artemis Defense presents a fun experience. 

Team Isabelle: Project Pepe. Team Isabelle built a golden 3D frog in Warhammer style, that is both a puzzle and a safe for hidden thumb drives. A bonus is that it will also serves as a collectable/customizable figurine once they have a final 3D print prototype.

Team Marina: Project Katalyst. Another Galaga style space shooter game whose story involved tamagotchi style robot cats going to the moon. Team Marina designed very polished graphics and opened with a vibrant screen, matching their colorful pitch.

Team Pepper: Minutes 2 Midnight. Minutes 2 Midnight is a simple game level that was built in Unreal. Acknowledging that their skills are still very new, this team went far with what they had. They are a great reminder that you don't have to have it all figured out on day one. Developing your skills at UAT is all part of the journey.

Team Kirby: God's Hunt. Unlike the other teams, Team Kirby created a physical board game that will eventually use cards and playing pieces, incorporating Greek, Aztec, Norse, and Chinese mythos. Along with those assets, the playing cards will cleverly use memes to affect game play.

Team QBBY: Meme Clock. This is a working website that generates a random meme from a database every minutes with a clock. The team was able to build a prototype desktop widget displaying the clock and memes.

Team Yoshi: Max Meme Dispenser. Max Meme Dispenser is a Discord bot created in Dyno bot that generated memes in response to text. Team Yoshi really had the audience laughing with their very specific UAT memes created for the challenge.

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Drum Roll, Please, aaand the Winner is...

🏆 Team Link with Project Artemis came out on top as the Fall 2022 Provost Challenge winners. 🏆

Team Programmer, Nicholas Bonofiglio (Game Design and Game Programming), shares his experience, "The Provost Challenge was an incredible and stressful introduction to the first two weeks of school. Being assigned a team and given parameters to create something based on a theme and then present it to our peers sparked creativity and innovation that I had not seen thus far. This allowed us to really show off our creative sides while dealing with integrating as a team to make something cohesive." 

He continues, "Our team faced many challenges along the way that highlighted our strengths and weaknesses; this gave good insight into where we would have to focus our attention to become experts in our craft. Serving as the Lead Programmer, I experienced the effects of a fast-moving clock like I had not experienced in some time. I sort of took over [as the lead] and was able to use some of my experience leading people to help centralize our focus on achieving our objective, and I'm very proud of the team and what they have accomplished."

"We are actually continuing to work on this project and make it something great for kids to become more aware of their actions and presence in the digital world we live in today. This challenge has formed many great friendships and promoted teamwork in the best way possible, and I look forward to the many challenges that await us in the future."

Congratulations to Team Link and all the students who participated! Welcome to UAT!

Provost Challenge

More About UAT

UAT offers a unique learning environment centered around advancing technology and taking technology education and innovation to the next level with Synchronic™ Learning. Only at UAT will you find such an extraordinary focus on advancing technology curriculum with the resources to empower student innovation centered on advancing technology degrees. The mentor relationships between our students and faculty prepares the students for a successful college career and to overcome challenges after graduation.

 

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