UMKC Hosts Regional Robotics Qualifier

Nearly 500 teens will contend for best robot

Kansas City, MO – Students from the Kansas City region and beyond will put their robots to the test during the FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) qualifying tournament on Saturday, Feb. 1 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, 5030 Holmes, Kansas City, Mo.  Opening ceremonies will kick off at 11:15 a.m., with robot match play running from noon until 4:45 p.m. and awards immediately following.

More than thirty-five teams will participate in the FTC Robotics competition, which will allow middle and high school students to apply real-world math and science principles while developing strategic problem-solving, organizational, and team-building skills.

To participate, students build a robot from re-usable, modular materials with the assistance of community mentors and local educators. Teams of seven to twelve students are responsible for designing, building and programming their robot to compete in a 12-by-12 foot arena to complete a task within a time period. The top six teams will advance to the Missouri State Championship, to be held in Rolla on March 1.

“Programs like First Tech Challenge are more than just fun. They give local high school and middle school students a chance to build the types of skills that are necessary for careers in science, technology, engineering and math,” said Kevin Truman, dean of UMKC’s SCE.

The FIRST Tech Challenge is a program with Kansas City FIRST, a division of US FIRST, an organization established to encourage young people toward STEM careers.

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