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MerseySTEM Robotics Challenge: Wirral Heat – St Mary’s win final place!
On the 24th of November MerseySTEM hosted the Wirral heat of their (now famous) Robotics Challenge. Eight schools from the local area built their bots and battled it out at Wirral Metropolitan College; Mosslands School, Kingsway Academy, Woodchurch, Calday Grange, Ridgeway, St Mary’s Catholic College, West Kirby Grammar and St Anselm’s.
After a day of pulverized processors, ruptured relays, severed struts and mangled motors, it was St Mary’s Catholic College who came out on top and earned their place in the Grand Final. Congratulations to them!
MerseySTEM in conjunction with Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and Vex Robotics have facilitated a series of eight Robotic Challenges, culminating in a grand final at Aintree Racecourse on December 10th 2015. The Wirral heat was sponsored by Urenco.
Each challenge sees teams of students from local schools take part in a full-day event, building their robots in the morning and pitting them against each other in the afternoon in a series of matches. The winning team progresses to the Liverpool City Region Grand Final competing against schools from across the Merseyside region. All teams are supported by MerseySTEM, local professionals and STEM Ambassadors to help build their machine.
MerseySTEM Managing Director Michelle Dow said, “I love our Robot Challenges, it’s great that we don’t see our competitors faces for most of the morning as they are heads down, focused on building the best robot on the day.”
“The robot days give us the opportunity to change perceptions, challenge stereotypes, promote teamwork and provide careers advice to students using real role-models from our city. Robot Wars are nothing new, but whatever you say – robots are cool!”
“It was a fantastic competition today, the students were engaged and the final was electric! St Mary’s couldn’t contain their excitement and neither could we. I think we were all jumping with them! Congratulations to both of our finalists and all of our attending schools.”
The MerseySTEM Robotics Challenges enable students to understand a variety of design, science and engineering principles and develop leadership and problem solving skills. The events aim to inspire and excite students’ interest in robotics & to demonstrate the practical application of mathematics and engineering… they also have a lot of fun!
Simon Reid, Sector Manager for Advanced Manufacturing, Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) said: “As the City Region’s economy continues to improve, more companies are facing a shortage of skilled workers, especially in Advanced Manufacturing. Now more than ever our future depends on a workforce with the necessary talents and training for the jobs of today and tomorrow, and the best way to ensure a steady supply of workers is through education. That is why initiatives such as the Robotics Challenge are so important; they provide an opportunity for our young people to really engage with the possibility of working in this sector and hopefully encourage them that Advanced Manufacturing is an exciting and rewarding career.”
The winning school from each heat receives a ‘VEX Competition Lab Kit’ worth over £750, as well as support from VEX Robotics with the opportunity to enter a further competition that culminates in a Grand Final at Big Bang North West 2016!
Winners also go through to the Liverpool City Region Grand Final to compete against the other heat’s champions later in the Winter term!
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