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90 Kiwibots head to US for Robotics World Championships

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Ninety robotics students between the ages of 11 and 18, and their support teams, have headed to Louisville, Kentucky, this week for the VEX Robotics World Championships, the biggest and fastest growing youth robotics competition in the world.

After 9 World Championship successes in 10 years, the Kiwis are hopeful of bringing back some more silverware. Twelve teams from 10 New Zealand schools and robotics clubs are competing with the finals taking place on 27th April, US EDT.

The World Championships is based on the VEX robotics system, the largest producer and distributor of robotics kits in the world.

VEX selects the best teams from national championships from around the world to compete. The 12 teams from New Zealand are being joined by 11 teams from Australia.

The New Zealand teams this year come from Feilding, Palmerston North, Auckland, Tauranga and Taranaki.

Their journey to the US is being supported by the Royal Society, an independent, statutory not-for-profit body in New Zealand providing funding and policy advice in the fields of sciences and the humanities.

Chris Hamling, from Kiwibots says the calibre of Kiwi teams is down to two things - the creativity and innovation of each member and their ability to work as a team in a highly competitive environment:

"We’ve been incredibly successful over a decade and have shown New Zealand to be the best competitive robotics nation in the world at this level. We out-innovative and play the best from any country."

Kiwibots produces and promotes robotics education and competitive events, with an aim to inspire young New Zealanders to be innovators and creative thinkers. It’s programme teaches STEM skills (science, technology, engineering and maths) and helps prepare young people for the future of work.

It operates as a trust and supports seven regional robotics organisations, involving around 2,500 students and manages two national robotics competitions.

It is supported by New Zealand sponsors including: Fisher and Paykel Healthcare, Glidepath, SMC Corporation and Smales Farm.

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