UMKC Hosts Regional Robotics Competition

KC STEM Alliance expands US FIRST Robotics Program in KC

January 29, 2013
Contact: Kristin Pitts
(816) 235-6678,

Kansas City, MO – Students from the Greater Kansas City region and beyond will put their robots to the test during the FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) regional competition on Sunday, Feb. 3 at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

UMKC’s School of Computing and Engineering will host the competition in partnership with the KC STEM Alliance. The event is free, open to the public, and will be held in UMKC’s Swinney Recreation Center.  Opening ceremonies will kick off at 11:30 a.m., robot match play will run from 12:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., and an awards ceremony will immediately follow.

Qualified teams have been chosen to participate in the FTC Robotics competition, which will allow middle and high school students to apply real-world math and science while developing strategic problem-solving, organizational, and team-building skills.

With the assistance of UMKC SCE mentors and community mentors, students have built a robot from re-usable, modular robotics. Teams of up to 15 students are responsible for designing, building and programming their robot to compete in a 12 by 12 arena to complete a task within a time period. The top 6 teams will advance to the Missouri State Championship.

“It is clear to the faculty, staff and students in our school that we need to rally with the Kansas City community to support K-12 STEM education, including programs like FTC, to ensure that we have the skilled workforce needed in our region,” Kevin Truman, dean of UMKC’s SCE, said.

The KC STEM Alliance will partner with schools and community organizations to expand participation to under-served communities. The FIRST Tech Challenge is being launched by Kansas City FIRST, a division of US FIRST, an organization established to encourage young people toward STEM careers.

About UMKC School of Computing and Engineering
The University of Missouri-Kansas City’s School of Computing and Engineering is Kansas City’s only university with ABET-accredited engineering, computer science and information technology degree programs. SCE’s internationally recognized faculty prepare students for today’s competitive job market by providing a curriculum that includes the latest technology and business trends, as well as a comprehensive education in each field’s theory and fundamental practice. Our classes also build bridges to the professional world by partnering with local companies, organizations and engineers. To learn more about SCE, visit

About KC STEM Alliance
The KC STEM Alliance is a collaborative network of educators, business partners and organizations that inspires interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math careers to generate a robust force of related professionals for our community. The Alliance supports area STEM programs, including Project Lead the Way and FIRST, coordinates related research and program evaluation as well as facilitating school and industry partnerships. The Alliance supports efforts that provide a solid foundation of STEM education for all students, regardless of race, gender or economic status; thereby increasing the quality, quantity and diversity of job-ready candidates for local STEM employers and advancing economic development and progress in our community. To learn more about the KC STEM Alliance, visit

The FIRST – For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology – organization was founded in 1989 by Dean Kamen, an entrepreneur and inventor who holds more than 440 patents and is best known for inventing the Segway Scooter. The organization was established “to inspire young people to be science and technology leaders, by engaging them in exciting mentor-based programs that build science, engineering and technology skills, that inspire innovation, and that foster well-rounded life capabilities including self-confidence, communication, and leadership” with the hope that they will be motivated to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering or mathematics.

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This information is available to people with speech or hearing impairments by calling Relay Missouri at (800) 735-2966 (TT) or (800) 735-2466 (voice).

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