Robotics tourney coming to N. Texas, volunteers needed
Volunteers needed to support middle- and high-school competitions
Teen-agers around the world are proving how cool robotics can be in the VEX Robotics Competition.
In North Texas, volunteers are needed to judge and support regional and state competitions this spring.
The VEX Robotics Competition, presented by Tech Titans member Robotics Education & Competition (REC) Foundation, presents an engineering challenge in the form of a game. Classroom STEM concepts are put to the test and, in addition to learning valuable engineering skills, students gain critical ‘soft’ skills such as teamwork, perseverance, communication, collaboration, project management, and critical thinking.
The competition is the largest and fastest growing middle school and high school robotics program globally with more than 30,000 teams from 72 countries playing in more than 2,000 competitions worldwide.
Tournaments are held year-round at the regional, state, and national levels and culminate at the VEX Robotics World Championship in April.
Volunteers and mentors from tech companies are necessary to run the show. Volunteer roles include being judges for competitions, resetting fields between challenges, inspecting competition robots for compliance before competition begins, and being scorekeepers. These roles do not require engineering skills and training is provided.
Volunteering is a great staff team building activity. The impact of volunteers is important as they model critical soft skills needed in the workplace, such as communication, conflict management, and diplomacy to students. These soft skills will ultimately give them the tools to perform efficiently in their academic environment as well as in their future workplace.
School robotics programs make a difference. This year, the US will have an estimated 779,000 job openings requiring STEM degrees but there will only be an estimated 555,200 degree holders, creating a shortfall of 223,800 workers. At the current rate, the STEM workforce shortage is expected to cost the US $95 trillion dollars over several decades. The REC Foundation’s Robotics Competition prepares students to become future innovators and enter the STEM workforce with 95% of participants reporting an increased interest in STEM subject areas and pursuing STEM-related careers.
In addition to operating and supporting competitions for some of the world’s leading robotics platforms and organizations, including VEX, TSA, and BEST Robotics, the REC Foundation also provides program support and workshops focused on technology and professional development for educators. The REC Foundation is a US-registered 501(c)(3) non-profit educational organization.
Please visit https://www.roboticseducation.org/volunteer for more details on how to sign up as an individual or a team at the Texas State Robotics Championship. For additional information, please contact Development@roboticseducation.org.