STEM NEWS

Local robotics league starts competitive season Saturday
Jacksonville Business Journal. Will Robinson. September 01, 2017.

Renaissance Jax and Northeast Florida STEM2 Hub are kicking off the competitive robotics season with an event Saturday, Sept. 2, from 10 a.m. till 2 p.m at Jacksonville University's Larry Strom Amphitheater. It is free and open to the public.
 
Renaissance Jax, an affiliate of international robotics nonprofit FIRST Lego League, invites students ages six to 16 and their parents to come hear from coaches, teachers and event organizers about this year's annual competition.
 
Renaissance Jax and STEM2, an education-focused organization backed by 15 local companies, hope that competitive robotics will help local students get passionate about science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).
 
“We have spent the entire off-season preparing to give the kids an experience that will ignite their passion for learning, and we cannot wait to get started,” said Mark McCombs, executive director of Renaissance Jax.
 
Each year's competition focuses on a real-world problem. This year's will focus on Hydrodynamics and Aqua Adventure themes, which will force students to invent ways to find, transport, use or dispose of water resources. More than 300,000 students will participate across nearly 90 countries.
 
“Working as a team to explore a global issue, these students sharpen their innovative problem-solving skills, and apply concepts they’re learning during the school day," said Donald Bossi, FIRST president. "The timely topic of the human water cycle will task kids with the important duty of understanding what happens to our water and how we can improve the ways in which we use it.”
 
Robert Copeland, executive director of STEM2, believes the partnerships between Renaissance Jax, STEM2, FIRST and JU will help prepare Jacksonville students for STEM education and later STEM career fields.
 
“There’s no substitute for programs like FIRST Lego League to open students’ eyes to new possibilities for their future, and we are so pleased to partner with Renaissance Jax for another year of rewarding, exciting STEM learning.”

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