Students from North Texas will represent the United States in a global robotics competition this month.
The FIRST Global Challenge is “an olympics-style, international robotics competition that takes place in a different country each year.”
“Teams work together to complete tasks in a game themed around one of the greatest challenges facing our planet…in an effort to foster understanding and cooperation among the youth of the world as they use their abilities to solve the world’s problems,” according to FIRST.
The main topic of this year’s challenge will be carbon capture and storage.
The Technicbots were formed in 2009 with only six members, and have participated in programs run by FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) since its inception.
“We all knew each other when we were little kids, and that’s how basically our generation on this team started,” said Max Fan, a senior at Lebanon Trail High School in Frisco and builder on the Technicbots.
Now, the Technicbots are composed of 15 students, have participated in global competitions, and have broken world records in robotics challenges.
“We have people from Plano, some people from Frisco, some people from Dallas and Coppell. It’s just sort of everywhere in North Texas, that we just come to meet and help solve world issues together,” said Jessica Boll, a student at Dallas’ Hockaday School and marketing and outreach member for the Technicbots.
The group also served as “Team USA” in last year’s FIRST Global Challenge, which was held virtually, and allowed the Technicbots to ally with Team Zimbabwe.
This year, the team will travel to Geneva to compete in-person with over 180 other teams.
“This year I’m just really looking forward to seeing all the other teams and their robots in person and learning more from what they’ve done, and seeing how their designs stack up against ours, and just learning all the different innovations that I can see,” said Fan.
Austin Liu, Technicbots youth mentor and rising senior at the Texas Academy of Math and Science, said, “I think the first time we were doing it, one thing we learned was interacting with other teams was very important, and it’s important to build those relationships.”
Competing as part of this year’s Team USA are the following students: