MYTHBUSTERS and HEAD RUSH host Kari Byron celebrated future innovators at the Ultimate Robotics Competition of the 2010-2011 VEX Robotics Season.
Participants of the 2011 VEX Robotics World Championship were joined this weekend by Kari Byron, host of the Discovery Channel’s hit show MYTHBUSTERS and the Science Channel’s HEAD RUSH, as winning alliances from the Middle School, High School and College competitions triumphed from United States, Canada, China and New Zealand, after outmaneuvering some of the world’s best teams during the intense three-day tournament that took place April 14-16 at Walt Disney World’s ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex near Orlando, Fla.
The event drew more than 10,000 middle school, high school, and university participants representing 16 countries from around the world. Teams created customized robots built with the VEX Robotics Design System to compete against the best of the best playing the 2010-2011 season game Round Up.
“Robotics is a perfect model for workforce development,” said Jason Morrella, president of the REC Foundation, which stands for Robotics Education and Competition Foundation. “It’s critical that we prepare our youth to succeed in today’s rapidly-advancing competitive world, by imbedding programs like VEX Robotics into daytime curriculum, and then enabling them to test their skills as an extracurricular activity in events like this.”
The games kicked off on Thursday and continued Friday. After a series of intense back-to-back matches and elimination rounds, the High School Champion alliance emerged with teams comprised of Massachusetts’ Green Egg Robotics Club, Washington’s W.A.S.A.B.I. 2 and Ontario, Canada’s Simbotics teams.
The Middle School Champion represented an alliance of China teams from Sichuan Chengdu Longjiang Road Primary School and the Shanghai Luwan Teenagers Activity Center.
The College Championship title went to Massey University from New Zealand.
Along with the competition winners, one team from each of the three divisions was presented with an Excellence Award, the highest honor in the VEX Robotics Competition, given to the team with the most well-rounded VEX Robotics Program. Middle School, High School and College Excellence Award winners included, the VEXMEN: NightCrawler team from Downingtown Area Robotics in Downingtown, Pa.; the Cheesy Poofs from Bellarmine College Prep in San Jose, Calif.; and Massey University in New Zealand.
Several other technical and value based awards were presented to teams and individuals in each division for excelling in categories such as: Build, Community, Create, Design, Education, Energy, Future, Innovate, Inspire, Judges, Promote, Sportsmanship, Support, Teamwork, Think, Robot Skills Challenges, Mentor of the Year, Partner of the Year, Teacher of the Year and Volunteer of the Year.
The VEX Robotics World Championship was the concluding event of the 2010-2011 VEX Robotics Competition season, brought together by the non-profit REC Foundation, VEX Robotics, Inc., and their partners: Autodesk, NASA, EMC, Northrop Grumman and Innovation First International. Additional organizations supporting the event included the FUTURE Foundation, Microchip, Intelitek, the Robotics Academy at Carnegie Mellon University, and the CREATE Foundation.
BEST Robotics, a middle and high school national robotics program established in 1993, also hosted its second annual national championship alongside the VEX Robotics World Championship. The Boy Scouts of America were on hand to award some of the first Robotics Merit Badges to more than 25 deserving scouts. Meanwhile, the U.S. Coast Guard Academy AROW hosted its water robotics competition.
The 2011/2012 VEX Robotics Competition game Gateway was unveiled after much anticipation at the tournament. The object of next year’s game is to attain a higher score than your opponent by picking up colored balls and barrels and placing them in circular goalposts of varying heights.
For more information about the VEX Robotics World Championship and this year’s award winners, please visit RobotEvents.com/championship