Delaware State University hosts Lego League Robotics Championship

Courtesy of Delaware State University

Delaware State University was once again the site of the 2023 FIRST Lego League Delaware State Championship on March 18, a robotic competition between 10 teams mostly from Delaware, but also from Maryland and Pennsylvania.

In the robotic competition, the 10 teams of students – from grade 4-8 – competed in presentations that demonstrated core values, robot design, and an innovation project.

“In this year’s game, called ‘SUPERPOWERED’, teams and their robots must accomplish tasks related to power and energy,” said Dr. Matthew Bobrowsky, who was the primary coordinator of the competition. “This is about recognizing and overcoming barriers and then inventing creative solutions.  We look at how well teams work together and accomplish various energy-related tasks in a race against time.”

Dr. Bobrowsky, who is a is a lecturer in the University’s Department of Physics, Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science, is the FIRST Program Delivery Partner for the State of Delaware. On behalf of Delaware State University, he coordinates FIRST Lego League and FIRST Tech Challenge robotic competitions for pre-college students in Delaware. Delaware State University is the official “affiliate partner” for the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Program). University students also assisted in the hosting of the event.

The FIRST Program is an international non-profit program that prepares young people for the future through a suite of inclusive, team-based robotics programs facilitated in schools or in afterschool programs for ages 4-18.

In the 2023 FIRST Lego League state championship – which was held in the parlors of the Martin Luther King Jr. Student Center on campus – the competitors were judged by how their teams demonstrated FIRST’s Core Value of Discovery, Innovation, Impact, Inclusion, Teamwork and Fun.

The 1st Place award went to the Load Robotics team from Chesapeake, Md. The 2nd and 3rd place awards went to the S2STEM team of Garnet Valley, Pa., and The Mind MONCS of the First State Robotics Club in Newark, Del.

As part of the March 18 event, Ian Hayes, a senior computer science major from Dover, gave a special presentation to the participants on “Todays Robotics Meets Tomorrow’s Computer Science.”  Mr. Hayes described some of the exciting research in which he is involved, as well as the applications and future technologies in which robotics will play major roles.  He also explained how the robotics that the students were working on would serve them well in many possible future careers.