University Hosts Razorback Regional FIRST Robotics Competition

Arkansas teens will compete for national recognition.

 More than 40 Arkansas and regional high schools will bring students, teachers, mentors, sponsors and family members to the University of Arkansas to participate in Arkansas’ inaugural FIRST Robotics Competition. The competition will be held in Barnhill Arena on April 4, 5 and 6. This high-tech sporting event, which is free and open to the public, will produce excitement and energy for participants and spectators alike, as teams demonstrate their engineering skills, teamwork and sportsmanship.

The FIRST Robotics Competition challenges high school students – working with professional mentors – to design and build a robot to contend in competitions that measure the effectiveness of each robot, the power of collaboration and the determination of students. Teams in the FIRST Robotics Razorback Regional Competition will vie for regional awards and a spot at the FIRST Championship to be held later that month in St. Louis, Mo.

Chase Rainwater, assistant professor of industrial engineering, and Bryan Hill, assistant dean for recruitment in the College of Engineering, are co-chairs of the Razorback Regional FIRST Robotics planning committee.

"It is very exciting to finally have an FIRST Robotics Competition event in the state of Arkansas,” said Rainwater.“The hands-on experience students gain through their partnership with engineering mentors and educators is immeasurable. Ultimately, programs such as this lead to stronger students and an increased pool of talented scientists and engineers."

FIRST, an acronym for For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology is a not-for-profit organization, founded by inventor Dean Kamen and dedicated to inspire an appreciation of science and technology in young people.

Release date: 9/20/2012