Robot competition challenges students

Robot Competition
Posted at 5:46 PM, Feb 03, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-03 17:46:00-05

TALLAHASSEE, FL (WTXL) -- Saturday, Florida A&M's gym was full of robots for the regional VEX competition. Students were in the zone, controlling their robots to complete tasks and score points for their team.

Middle and high school students from 8 schools across the Big Bend participate in the annual VEX Robotics Competition. Amanda Wiman, a Rickards High School Student, says "It's something that you can see that you're doing. It's just so much fun to learn about how to build new things." Many aspire to be architects and engineers, saying they look forward to this event each year.

Each school's team gets a kit with all the materials they can use and VEX creates new tasks each year. Harmony Reddick, a FAMU DRS student, tells us "It gives a lot of experience if your interested in the STEM program or you want to go into engineering or science."

The 15 teams earn points from different games and obstacles. After months of building and rebuilding, students are putting their robots to the test. One task this year involves stacking as many cones possible into your team's end zone.

The competition builds a team spirit and challenges students in a unique way. Many say, this is not the first year they have entered and it won't be the last. Jane McDonald, Coordinator for the VEX Robotics Competition, adds, "It allows them the opportunity to think creatively and develop their creative thinking skills. As well as giving them some hands on experience as opposed to just sitting at a computer."

At the end of the day, the 3 teams with the most points are qualified to go to the state competition next month. It's a friendly competition, but students take great pride in their robots and the skills they gain from the experience.