High school students compete in Kansas City robotics competition - KCTV5

High school students compete in Kansas City robotics competition

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After six weeks of designing and building an original robot from scratch, students make last minute changes. (Abigael Jaymes/KCTV) After six weeks of designing and building an original robot from scratch, students make last minute changes. (Abigael Jaymes/KCTV)
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

In full competition style, the rigors of science meet the excitement of sport during the Greater Kansas City Regional FIRST (“For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology”) Robotics Competition.

Over a thousand high school students who came as far as Texas filled the gymnasium at the Metropolitan Community College, Business and Technology campus on Thursday.

“The reason they do it is so they can see the relevance of math and science,” said the Executive Director of KC STEM Alliance, Martha McCabe.

After six weeks of designing and building an original robot from scratch, students sounded their power tools to make last minute changes to their robots before facing off for the challenge. 

“The way we designed our robot is we tried to make it as compact and effective as possible,” said student competitor, Ben Kutz.

Students work in teams to design their own robot. According to McCabe, the students benefit in more ways than one.

“What really makes FIRST Robotics unique is the development of core values. So gracious professionalism and teamwork and how to communicate your solution,” McCabe said.  

McCabe said teams are required to fundraise and market their own brand.

“They get to work right alongside real-life professional engineers who serve as mentors and coaches for their teams,” McCabe said.

The competition features a different robot game, played out in alliances of three teams.

In the end, it’s about scoring as many points as possible.

“They need to do these tasks and we need to get the airships to basically fly up,” Kutz said.

The alliance with the highest score at the end of the match is the “best prepared for the race” and wins.

All teams are vying for a series of awards including a spot at the FIRST International Robotics Championship in St. Louis this April.

If you’d like to see the regional competition in Kansas City this weekend, the public is invited to attend for free.

For details and competition times, click here.

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