HONOLULU, Hawai‘i – Waialua High, McKinley High, and Kealakehe High School robotics teams won this year’s FIRST in Hawai‘i Regional Robotics Competition, qualifying them to move on to the 2011 FIRST Robotics Championship at the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis, Missouri, April 27-30. In all, six teams from Hawai‘i schools have secured spots in the international championship, ensuring the Aloha State will be well represented in the prestigious competition dubbed the “Super Bowl of Smarts.”
After an exciting weekend of competition, including 55 qualifying matches and a high-energy finals bracket match-up of the top 24 teams, six Hawai‘i teams battled for the championship title including a three-team alliance of Baldwin, Waiakea, and Lahainaluna High Schools and an opposing alliance of Waialua, McKinley, and Kealakehe High Schools. In a best two-of-three match, the Waialua, McKinley, and Kealakehe alliance won in the third match.
In addition to the tournament competition winners, the following recognitions were awarded to the teams of student competitors:
Regional Chairman’s Award: Greater Sydney High Schools, Sydney, Australia*
Engineering Inspiration Award: Waiakea High School*
Rookie All-Star Award: Waianae High School*
Dean’s List Students: Adria Fung, Sacred Hearts Academy; Eric Teshima, Kalani High School
Regional Finalists: Baldwin High, Lahainaluna High, Waiakea High
Gracious Professionalism Award Sponsored by Johnson & Johnson: Punahou School
Highest Rookie Seed: Waianae High School
Industrial Safety Award Sponsored by Underwriters Laboratories: Sacred Hearts Academy
Quality Award Sponsored by Motorola: Waialua High School
Coopertition Award (TM): Punahou School
Team Spirit Award Sponsored by Chrysler: The Kauaibots, including students from Island School, Kapa‘a High, Waimea High, and Kauai High
Industrial Design Award: Kealakehe High School
Judge’s Award: Kapolei High School
*Indicates award recipient qualifies for the international championship.
The following Hawai‘i schools advanced to the international championship:
– Kealakehe High School
– McKinley High School
– Sacred Hearts Academy (previously qualified at Worcester Polytechnic Institute Regional Competition)
– Waiakea High School
– Waialua High School (also previously qualified at New York City Regional Competition)
– Waianae High School
More than 1,000 students representing 32 public, private, and charter schools from across the state, as well as Australia, participated in the third annual Hawai‘i regional robotics competition, which took place this weekend at the Stan Sheriff Center at the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa.
In this year’s challenge, named “LOGO MOTION”, two alliances of three teams compete on a 27-by-54-foot field with poles, and earn points by hanging as many triangle, circle, and square logo pieces as possible. Bonus points are earned for each robot that can hang and assemble logo pieces to form the FIRST logo. Robots can also deploy Mini-Bots to climb vertical poles for a chance to earn additional points.
The FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Competition challenges teams of young people and their mentors to solve a common engineering problem in a six-week timeframe using a standard “kit of parts” and a common set of rules. The competition allows students to apply academic knowledge and innovation, while developing teamwork, problem-solving, and critical thinking skills that will better prepare them to continue their education and enter the workforce.
The 2012 FIRST in Hawaii Regional Robotics Competition, the fifth annual event, is scheduled for the same weekend next March.