homepage home
subscribe to Southeast Construction magazine subscribe
newsletters free e-newsletter
advertise
industry jobs industry jobs
Dodge Data & Analytics
Southeast Construction Logo
Order Your RISK FREE Subscription
comment

Florida Engineering Students are World Champions of Robotics

Text size: A A

Two Florida high-school teams won the world championships of robotics engineering at an international competition held April 25-28 in St. Louis, Mo. The competition is sponsored by For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST), an organization founded by Segway inventor Dean Kamen.

Photo courtesy Middleton High School
A team from Middleton High School in Tampa won one of the divisions at the FIRST world championships. Team Masquerade's robot, pictured at rear, was able to consistently lift a higher number of crates.
----- Advertising -----

A team comprised mostly of engineering students from Middleton High School in Tampa, Fla., won the division in which robots were required to collect balls, place them into crates and then elevate them as high as possible. The Hillsborough County engineering magnet school is a certified Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) academy.

The Tampa high school has seen a surge in the number of students applying to enroll in its magnet studies, the largest of which is engineering, says Kathy Freriks, who heads the magnet program. For the upcoming school year, Middleton received approximately 1,600 applications, nearly double the 900 of last year. Of that number, only about 350 will be accepted, she said.

Robotics has "definitely become a draw" for potential students, Freriks said. "STEM is a buzzword across the nation now, and we’re right in the thick of it."

The school’s team, Masquerade, was part of a three-team “alliance” that won the head-to-head competition, mostly by being the most consistent at lifting multiple crates and thereby winning big points, says Brian Neuman, a sophomore member of the team.

"We were not the highest lifter," he said. "The thing we had going for us was consistency. It’s amazing to see that this robot going only half as tall as the others was beating them. It was pretty astonishing."

The Masquerade team is comprised entirely of freshmen and sophomores, and all but two members were rookies. Therefore most, like Neuman, are only starting their engineering studies and haven’t decided on a major or applied to colleges yet.

Another Florida team comprised of students from two different Martin County high schools won a separate division, where robots were required to shoot basketballs into a series of hoops.

In these two FIRST divisions, 500 teams competed at the St. Louis championships, said Cheryl Walsh, a senior director with the New Hampshire-based organization. Overall, FIRST had more than 20,000 teams from 32 different countries competing at all levels this year.

Keywords:

----- Advertising -----
Blogs: SE Staff
Our blog delivers the latest news, insights, and opinions about ENR Southeast.
Reader Photos
Photos from ENR Southeast Photo Showcase
Dodge Lead Center
Search for local construction projects OR CALL 877-234-4246 and get a FREE Lead Now!
Search by Project Type & State





----- Advertising -----
 Reader Comments:

Sign in to Comment

To write a comment about this story, please sign in. If this is your first time commenting on this site, you will be required to fill out a brief registration form. Your public username will be the beginning of the email address that you enter into the form (everything before the @ symbol). Other than that, none of the information that you enter will be publically displayed.

We welcome comments from all points of view. Off-topic or abusive comments, however, will be removed at the editors’ discretion.